How to use social media to make sales?

Most business owners decide to set up social media because they want to increase their sales and grow their business. Even though it is possible, sometimes their expectations are quite unrealistic. I can promise you now that, posting one picture of your product on Facebook won’t be enough to transform your business. Social Media Marketing takes time, but your patience shall be rewarded. Once you see the results, you’ll agree that it was worth the wait. Of course, you can speed up the process with PPC advertising however it all comes down to your budget. The reality is that the more you pay, the better the results you can expect.

However, let’s focus on organic social media marketing. Can it make sales?
The answer is that it can certainly influence sales. When it comes to sales, an average buyer goes through 5 steps of a decision-making process.

Problem Recognition
This is the time when Mr Customer identifies he has a problem, and he needs a solution. It could range from: “my sock has a hole” to “my employees aren’t productive”. The basic principle is that something in his life is missing and he needs to address it as soon as possible. That’s why being able to understand your customers’ needs and problems are crucial in sales.

Search Process
Once a customer identifies their problem, they’ll start looking for a solution. This is the moment when they would turn to Google, their friends, family and social media in search of the answer to their questions. That is exactly why most businesses would make sure they’re visible online. Mr customer is searching for solutions, and you need to be easy to find. Bear in mind you’re not the only one out there you can help. In order to stand out among your competitors, you need to build their trust by publishing content online that is relevant to your target audience and communicating with them. It’s about showing them that you understand them and you’re willing to help them by offering the solution to their problems.

Evaluating Alternatives
Once Mr Customer identifies exactly what could be the best solution to his problem, he will now look for the best deal available. He will analyse all providers and brands and decide which one to go for. That’s usually based on different factors such as price, quality, customer service etc. Since this is the moment when they will decide whether to pick you or your competition it is essential that your social media is filled with great testimonials from your clients. According to research, 84% of people trust online reviews as much as a personal recommendation. They will add more credibility to your profile and help you tip the scales towards your company.

Selection Stage
After weighing all the criteria and the pros and cons, Mr Customer will now make the decision which provider or a brand to choose. It’s very important to ask your customers what made them pick you and how did they find you in the first place. It will give you precious information on how you stand out among your competitors.

Evaluation of Decision
The last stage is when Mr Customer is already using your product or service. This is the time where marketers should find out whether they’re satisfied with the purchase. Ask for the feedback and if everything is okay, ask them to post a review on all your social media channels. If it’s not, find out what’s wrong and do everything in your power to make it right.

Social media can be incredibly helpful in the sales decision-making process. Especially in the first three stages, social media gives you an excellent opportunity to connect with your potential customers and show them that you understand their problem and you’re the right solution. You can help them make that decision by providing reviews and case studies of other clients who also had a similar problem to them previously. Just remember that the first step to getting sales is making yourself visible and raising the brand awareness of your company. That will then lead to boosted engagement online, improved website traffic and eventually increased sales and customer satisfaction.

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