In the digital age, social media has become an integral part of our lives, influencing the way we interact, shop, and discover brands. As a business owner or marketer, harnessing the power of social media to drive retail sales is a crucial step towards success and one that every CPG brand must take.
It also provides brands with an immense opportunity to engage customers online and start building velocity way ahead of distribution. After all, it’s always easier to get on the shelf than off it.
The thing is most consumers are doing their product discovery online and not on the shelf. If they are reaching for a new product, it’s most likely because they have heard about it online or through word of mouth.
In this blog, we will be diving into just how easily you can leverage your online following for maximum profit and expansion.
Know Your Audience Inside Out:
Understanding your audience is paramount to crafting content that resonates with them. Utilize social media analytics and customer insights to identify demographics, preferences, and behaviors.
You can also create custom surveys to ask your customers about themselves, their shopping habits, and feedback they have about your products so you can identify ways to better serve them.
Compelling, Engaging and Value-Driven Content:
Consistency is key to maintaining a strong presence on social media. It’s also important to share valuable and informative content that not only promotes your products but also educates, entertains, or solves problems for your followers.
Think of it like this - you want to bring your customers along with you on a journey, educating and entertaining them in the process. People love a good story and they love feeling like they are a part of it even more so try documenting your content instead of creating it.
Look at Mid Day Squares, for example. They do a phenomenal job at making their customers a part of their growth journey by giving their platforms an almost documentary-style presentation.
This way of content creating will foster a special connection within your online community giving you a better chance at retail success.
Host Contests and Giveaways:
People love freebies, and contests or giveaways are a fantastic way to boost engagement and attract new followers. Encourage participants to like, share, and tag friends, increasing your brand's visibility and potential customer base. Don't forget to integrate a strong call-to-action directing participants to your retail store or website.
Collaborating with influencers who align with your brand can amplify your reach and credibility. Influencers have dedicated followers who trust their recommendations, making them effective advocates for your products. Choose influencers who share your target audience and work with them to create authentic and compelling campaigns.
Leverage Social Media Advertising:
Paid advertising on social media platforms allows you to target specific audiences based on a variety of factors. This precise targeting ensures your ads reach those most likely to be interested in your products.
With paid ads, you can boost your customer in a certain area or retailer before you’re even available. Below, you can see Outer Aisle’s ad for Publix. They created an ad that led to their WeStock request form and ultimately harvested thousands of new Publix customers that wanted to see their product in their local store. All of this data was then used to open an account at that store and engage those shoppers once the product hit the shelf.
Customer Reviews and Testimonials:
Positive reviews and testimonials from satisfied customers can significantly influence potential buyers. Encourage customers to leave reviews on your social media profiles or website, and share glowing testimonials in your content. Authentic user experiences build trust and credibility around your brand.
Run Limited-Time Offers and Promotions:
Creating a sense of urgency can motivate followers to take action. Host flash sales, limited-time offers, or exclusive promotions that are available only to your social media followers. This approach can entice followers to make a purchase they might have otherwise postponed.
Another great way to incentivize your customers and increase velocity is through a promotional SMS campaign which we encourage many of our brands to do when they are ready to activate their audience for in-store sales. Our brands often run ads through social media that redirect their audience to an SMS landing page like the one below.
At the end of the day, transforming your social media followers into retail sales requires a combination of actions that will ultimately strengthen your omnichannel presence and meet your customer at every touchpoint possible. By investing time and effort into understanding your audience and building a strong online presence, you can turn your social media followers into devoted customers, increasing velocity and ensuring long-term success for your business.