Mutual knowledge between the brand and the customer fosters relationships of trust and commitment and generates long-term business opportunities. The creation of these ties is the main objective that the company must set in terms of social media. Transforming these links into sales will be a consequence that will practically come by itself if we have worked well on social networks with our community.
Can you sell on social networks?
Can networks be a sales channel for brands? The answer is yes, but indirectly, and it will also depend on the company and the activity to which it is dedicated. It cannot be assumed that by the mere fact of being in them, income will considerably increase, since they are not channels where electronic commerce is directly practiced, but rather they are ways to generate conversation with clients and potential clients.
With this clear, it will be possible to see how this two-way interaction between consumers and brand will indirectly lead to boosting sales. If users who are part of the community feel identified with the company, are listened to and their needs are satisfied, they may go to it – and not to the competition – when they need to purchase one of its products or services.
Furthermore, satisfied users will become prescribers who will also recommend the brand to their friends and acquaintances, possibly generating a chain of indirect sales that will be difficult to determine and quantify. To try it, you will have to look at the traffic, the conversion, the leads generated… everything in which social networks helped make money in some way to determine how they contribute to the financial health of the company.
Achieving that relationship of trust between company and consumer is not an easy task. Its basis is commitment, connection, conversation… terms that could be included in one: engagement. It is an English word widely used in social media and refers to that link between the brand and consumers that leads to improving the company’s image on social media and, secondarily, to increasing its sales.
Mutual knowledge between the brand and customers fosters relationships of trust that generate business opportunities, but establishing them is not easy and requires a lot of time and effort. However, creating these links should be the main objective of any company when considering its presence on social networks.
Five keys to increase engagement on social networks
1. Dialogue. It is the fundamental advice. The brand must speak, but also give a voice to the members of the community, since listening to their comments will be essential to know which path to follow on social networks. If it is a newly created community or one that is characterized by a certain apathy, you should take the initiative and ask for their opinion when launching a new product, news of importance for the sector…
2. Bet on quality content. It is the main tool to generate interaction. As we will see in chapter 4 of this book, making good content for networks is not an easy task and requires a significant effort on the part of the company. However, it is the only way to differentiate yourself from the competition on social media and attract the attention of the potential consumer.
3. Provides value. The company must make those who decide to be part of its community feel important and offer them something in return: discounts, special promotions, relevant information, exclusive products…
4. Respect the user. To generate engagement it is necessary to create a two-way dialogue, establishing a relationship of trust with the people who are part of the community that should never be betrayed.
5. Don’t let your guard down. User needs change and sometimes they do so unexpectedly. The brand must always remain attentive to new trends and any signals emitted by the members of its community in order to provide them with what they may need or even to anticipate their requirements before the competition does.
Being one of the first companies in your sector to be present on social networks, with a defined strategy, knowing the environment well and managing the tools and techniques that help you generate business opportunities, is essential today. Those who do it first will be able to position themselves with a wide advantage over their competitors.