We all know that social media has become a huge part of the way we promote and communicate with customers, but what can you actually expect to gain from using social media as a business? It's a valuable tool, that's for sure, but it does come with some limitations and it sometimes doesn't provide certain things you might want or need. Let's look at some things to consider when it comes to social media expectations:
If you plan a party but don’t send any invitations, you can expect that you probably won’t have any guests show up, right? The same goes for followers and your social media pages. If you don’t tell people that you’re on social media, then they don’t know to follow your pages. You can’t gain traction or followers if no one knows the page exists. Sharing your page within your business will help promote your profiles and can help you gain a bigger following. From posters to flyers to business cards, a QR code sign by the register, or even adding them to the enclosure cards are all great ways to promote that your business is social!
You do not have to be everywhere all at once. Social media is not a “go big or go home” type of game. It’s much more efficient—and profitable— to pick one or two social media platforms that work well for your industry or business and focus on building your audience. Facebook and Instagram are generally great for all industries and hit a variety of demographics, but they are especially perfect for florists—especially Instagram as a photo/video sharing platform. But again, you don’t have to be on both. It’s better to do one platform excellently than have six profiles on six platforms that you hardly post on because it’s too time consuming. As Bruce Lee said, “I do not fear the man who has practiced 10,000 kicks once, but I fear the man who has practiced one kick 10,000 times.”
Like most things, social media requires a certain amount of effort to be truly successful. Posting consistently, interacting with your customers, answering questions— all of these things go a long way in elevating the potential success your social media can have. You also have to make sure that you’re showcasing your products in the best way possible, which means you need good quality photos. Make sure they’re in good lighting and the pictures aren’t blurry. And remember to look at the pictures you take with a customer’s eye and ask yourself, “Would I like this photo if I saw it on my Facebook/Instagram feed?”
This might seem like a given, but you can’t just throw some words together and expect them to relate to your audience. Do simple posts that are cohesive and make sense. Ensure your captions have good grammar, are not too wordy, and relate to your audience and business. Have fun with it and don’t be afraid to use emojis and humor!
While you can and should promote your products and services, sales aren’t something that should be expected from social media, but are a nice bonus when they occasionally happen. At its core, social media is mainly for building brand awareness and strengthening your credibility as a business. It shows potential customers the beautiful arrangements you create, the services you provide, and tells them that you are open, operating, and care about your business and customers. You can use your social media platforms to direct traffic to where you want it to go by adding a link in the caption of the post, but the goal of your posts should just be to get your business in front of customers and remind them that you’re there for all their needs.
Just because you have social media, doesn’t mean you shouldn’t be marketing in other ways or other places. Actually, social media is a great supplemental tool and can help you strengthen your other marketing efforts. For example, if you are doing a marketing campaign in the local newspaper, utilize social media to promote the same campaign to a broader audience.
Social media is a great tool to have for your business, but it will not always provide immediate results. Think of it more as a marathon than a sprint. It’s something that will help your business immensely, but it will take time. Just keep at it, post consistently, and you’ll start seeing results soon.
Understanding what you can expect from social media goes a long way in ensuring you gain the most success possible from the platforms you use. Not savvy with social media? No worries! We created our Social Media Services just for you!
Dani James is a Marketing Specialist and writer for Atwill Media. She has a bachelor's degree in Strategic Communications from Arkansas State University with focuses in Public Relations, Advertising, and Social Media Management. When not working, she enjoys spending time with her family, reading a good book, and watching The Office.