While most small-business owners know that social media can be an excellent marketing tool, very few understand what it takes to turn a simple Facebook “like” into a long term customer.  That’s because we’ve all been ledto believe that businesses have to brag about their products and services in every last breath.  That was 20th century thinking though, and nothing drives off today’s consumers on social media faster than heavy self-promotion

State Bicycle Company’s Facebook Campaign

State Bycicle Company

We can all take a cue from State Bicycle Company.  This small business was in dire need of a larger online presence and with its marketing expenditures at an all-time high, Facebook seemed like it could be the answer.  Mehdi Farsi, the State Bicycle co-founder, decided to use social media to open up new dialogues, talk about upcoming releases and create engaging contests and promotions.  Rather than focus solely on the number of “likes” his company acquired, or even how much it was selling, he aimed to use Facebook to build meaningful relationships.

Within the first year alone, the company increased its sales by $500,000 through Facebook, added ten times as many followers and reduced its marketing budget by 80 percent. Here’s how they did it-

Get to Know Your Ideal Demographic

Ideal Demographic

Even though there are over 829 million Facebook users online daily, a large portion of these consumers will have absolutely no interest in your business. That’s what State Bicycle Company realized as it sought to identify its ideal customer. The company tried everything from music giveaways to local events to measure the overall response, and the employees even studied their competitors to see what types of people were following them.   

The lesson to be learned here is that mass marketing is not always the best concept on social media sites.  Users turn to Facebook to interact and build connections with others they can relate to, and that certainly applies to your company’s brand.  The more a business knows about its ideal consumer, the stronger its marketing efforts will become.

Develop Relationships with Customers

Handshake

That’s why a Facebook campaign’s goal should  never be to just boost sales. Farsi had that in mind when he started the social media marketing campaign,  and the vast majority of the company’s posts were designed to start conversations with potential customers.  For example, instead of simply posting about an upcoming trail ride, it asked Facebook fans who would be interested in attending and how the company could make the event even better.  Another clever campaign was asking users to post pictures of their ugliest bicycle, with the fan-proclaimed winner receiving a brand-new premium ride.

“Facebook has been critical,” says Farsi. “(It) has allowed State Bicycle Co. to have an open dialogue with our customers and potential customers.”

It’s also a good idea to take into account Facebook’s latest algorithm change, which ranks each user’s post based on popularity. That means for content to appear toward the top of a person’s news feed, the posting account has to have plenty of accumulated “likes” and comments over time.  Facebook then compares all of a user’s followed people/pages to see which one is the most popular at the time.  That’s how the algorithm determines the order in which posts are displayed, so each like and comment is crucial for any business to boost its ranking.

Experiencing the Domino Effect

Domino Effect

At the same time, State Bicycle Company also realized that by being social, it gained a much wider audience than they ever had before.  The average user on Facebook has 350 friends, and a single “like” can potentially give your business exposure to of all of them.  That’s why building solid relationships with customers can drive in more profit than any other marketing method on the planet.

At Upstate Synergy, we can help you design smart, consumer-focused campaigns that will keep your readers talking about your business.  By integrating Spartanburg County residents into your brand and showing that you value their input, it creates a lot more than additional sales- it creates actual relationships.  Let us show you how to get started today; the first step is filling out our contact form and meeting for a free one-on-one consultation.

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