Social media isn’t about getting as many fans and likes as you possibly can. If it was as easy as depositing your fans into your bank account then we would all be very rich very quickly. If your social media strategy is about sales, then the trick is to translate ‘likes’ into sales. If you are not doing that then you aren’t doing business – you’re just playing a game of who’s got the biggest following. Remember, it is about the quality of ‘likes,’ not the quantity.
I can imagine a CEO or manager sitting down with their accountant and seeing a budget shortfall looming on the horizon. “How can we possibly be short on sales? We’ve got hundreds of thousands of fans on Facebook?” While this may seem like a silly conversation, there are a lot of problems that could arise from this type of thought process. Just as with any type of marketing, there are three steps involved with your Facebook page. Attracting an audience, keeping their interest, and turning that interest into a sale or referral.
For comparison’s sake, think about sending out a mail out to potential customers. The mail out has to be crafted in a way that will get their attention within a few seconds, or it will wind up in the trash with the rest of the junk mail. That’s the ‘attracting an audience’ piece of the puzzle. On Facebook (or any other social site), this is making sure that your page is attractive, easily readable and understandable, and make someone want to know just a little more.
If someone then comes into your establishment or calls on the phone regarding the mail out they’ve received, that doesn’t mean it’s a sale. It only means that you’ve successfully passed stage one.
Stage two is keeping their attention and leading them from being interested to wanting your product or service. That person that came through the door would likely turn around and leave if the salesperson immediately jumped to the cash register to try and ring them up. Instead, a good salesperson will pique their interest and show them value in what they offer, moving slowly but surely towards the sale.
The same is true on your page. Even if they haven’t left a comment or asked a question, if they are viewing the page they have some interest in what you are showing and telling them. If you let up, they’ll go elsewhere. This means that you should be posting something every single day that is interesting enough to keep them coming back. These posts should also be related to your business somehow, even if indirectly. People’s attention spans are short, and talking about A and then trying to get them to buy or do B will lead to confusion and the loss of the sale.
This is the critical part, the part that defines your ROI on social media. If someone is coming back to your page repeatedly, you must turn that into a sale somehow. This is where the 20% promotional part of your posts comes in. You must establish which of your posts are the most effective and draw the biggest crowds, and then capitalize on this knowledge by offering your product or service in relation to it.
This is easier said than done, as any longtime salesperson will tell you. It’s way too easy for someone to simply click over to another page if they are turned off. To do this well and effectively, it needs to be a collaboration of efforts between your sales management team and your social media manager. The sales team knows what products will work and how to price them effectively, and the social media management team knows how to get that across to the customer in a social setting.
Finally, don’t ever forget that one of the most important rules of sales is to always get a referral. This can exponentially grow your business, and social media lends itself to word-of-mouth advertising better than any other platform in history. If one sale doesn’t turn into three or four, you’re not doing something right.