As a small independent retailer, you have to take advantage of different marketing strategies to gain customers for your store. While a social media presence isn’t a requirement to run a successful business, you may find that using those accounts can increase your customer base and encourage repeat visits to your store. A little bit of effort along these lines can go a long way. Here are some tips for marketing your gift or toy store with social media.
Provide the Details
When you first set up your account with Facebook, Twitter, etc., you’ll be asked for detailed information. While you don’t have to fill out all the fields to set up the account, you should provide as much information as possible. For example, you should list your website if you have one, your physical address, and your opening hours on your Facebook page. This gives interested customers the ability to look you up and visit you much easier. You may also want to add pictures of your store to help people identify it when they see it.
Post New Product Photos & Information
Kids are constantly bombarded with ads for the latest toys, and they already know what they want. On the other hand, parents aren’t always aware of the toys that are out there and where to get them. If their child has been asking for a specific toy, you need to let parents know that you keep that item in stock by sharing new product photos and information on your Facebook page. Posting new product information may even spur some customers into coming to your store right away.
Share a Video
Your social media pages are great places for sharing videos with potential customers. This could be an ad for a cool new toy or a how-to video your store produces. You could also make a video showcasing the products your store has to offer. The video doesn’t even have to be long – just long enough to intrigue people to see what else you have.
Host a Contest
People love winning prizes, no matter how big or small, especially if it doesn’t cost anything to enter the contest. Hosting a contest on social media is easy and it automatically increases your reach. You determine the parameters yourself. For example, you can ask people to comment on a post or share it in order to get entered into the drawing. You can also involve kids in the contest by inviting them to a coloring contest. When you do that, you must still get permission from their parents and the prize should be relevant to the age group you’re targeting.
Invite People to Comment & Share
You don’t have to set up a contest before you invite people to comment or share. It’s not recommended practice for every post, but there’s nothing wrong with occasionally ending a post in “What is your experience with this?” or “How does your child like this new toy?” If you’re already using social media advertising, it may be a good idea to boost one of the posts that already invite more comments and shares. If you invite people to comment on your post, it’s important to stay active in the comments. Respond to what people are saying and keep the discussion going.
Set up an Event
When you gain followers on your social media accounts, you can set up special events to reward them for their loyalty. For example, you can designate a day next month where anyone who likes you on social media gets a certain percentage off their purchase or qualifies for a special buy-one-get-one-free offer. The details are up to you, but it’s easy to set up events on social media. Your customer even gets reminders about the event and can share with their friends if they’re going or not. This allows your event to spread even if you’re not using your advertising budget for it.
Offer Real-Time Customer Service
One of the great things about social media is that everything happens in real time. You can download the relevant apps on your phone and respond to customer questions and inquiries as soon as you get them. While this doesn’t replace having a phone and email address, you may be able to increase your customer base just by being responsive on social media. The younger generation of customers prefers to contact businesses through these means over emailing or calling, and they’ll appreciate the prompt service you provide.