Some companies have been able to grow their business massively because of how they have cleverly used this marketing tool.
But how can you do it? Simple. You need to:
- engage your customers
- listen to your customers
- build your business network
- find your cheerleaders
- do it all over and over again
Engage your customers
You may be wondering just what I mean by this, but it is simple. Get your customers interested in what you have to offer. What problem do they need fixing, what need do they want to fulfil, what desires do they have that are not being met? This is your change to engage them with a solution, a solution just for them.
Listen to your customers
By talking and listening to your customers and prospects, you will get a feel for what it is they really want from your product or service. Now you are not likely to sit and call each and every one to do so, but by using the social media sites where they hang out, you have an easy set of tools at your disposal to be able to listen effectively.
Build your business network
Building your business network of connections will gibe you tentacles in all sorts of different industries and places: you may never know how and when you will use them, but they are there for you. By building a large connection base, you can call on select people to point you in the right direction, or reach out to them for help with a quirky need. I am only two degrees away from the President of the United States on LinkedIn, so I i am ever in Washington, maybe I will look him up… But seriously, a connection recently reached out for help with a quirky position he had, and I passed his request on to one of my connections, and guess what, it was a fit. It doesn’t always work out quite that easily, but I know that without a great connection base, I wouldn’t have the same resources to make use of from time to time.
Find your cheerleaders
You will have customers and clients who absolutely love what it is you do – they couldn’t be happier with your product or service. So how are you currently leveraging from them and rewarding them? Do you even know who they are?
If someone has been a cheerleader of yours without you realising it, do something special for them. Make them cheer some more, and maybe they will shout about you and your brand more than they already do, including online where they hang out.
Do it all over and over again
‘Giapo’ is an ice-cream parlour on Auckland’s Queen Street near the Civic Theatre. Set up in January 2009 at a time when business was definitely getting tougher, Gianpalo Grazioli took the plunge and it seems he hasn’t looked back. Not only is the shop set up in a very funky and modern way, but he has also made a huge splash and gained large numbers of followers and fans with the way he used social media sites such as Twitter, Facebook and YouTube. There is always something going on in his shop, whether it be karaoke, ice-cream tasting or even organised runs around the CBD. The message is relayed back and fourth through the online social media space for massive exposure. You can even short a quick video while still in his store and upload it to YouTube for your mates to see. Talk about getting others to promote your brand for you and become cheerleaders! he also encourages customers to bring in fruit from their gardens that have not been sprayed with any nasty chemicals, and he will pay you in ‘Giapo dollars’or ice cream. It’s a great way to engage your customers both on- and offline, and a real example of how a small operator can create a buzz around they brand.
Ref: Marketing with Social Media: 10 Easy Steps to Success for Business, Lina Coles (2015)
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