Effectively Using Social Media In Your Business: Part 3- Inform, Educate and Convince Customers

by | May 30, 2014

blog post aLet’s quickly review the bottom line of business.

You must get your products and services into the hands of your customers.  In exchange for your products and services, your customers will give you some sort of compensation.  There are 5 critical things that you need to do in order to make this happen.

You must:

  1. Find your customers or make it easy for them to find you.
  2. Find out what your customers need.
  3. Inform, educate and convince your customers that you can meet their needs.
  4. Deliver your product/service in way that suits your customer.
  5. Have systems in place to receive compensation.

If you have read our previous articles, hopefully by this time you know who your customers are and what they need.  Now you have to inform, educate and convince them that you can meet their needs.  Let’s look at each of these separately.

Inform

You must inform your customers that you can meet their needs.  While this may seem easy enough, many of us fail to do this.  How many times has someone said to you, “I didn’t know that you offered that service” or “I didn’t know that you had that type of product”?  You must find a way to get the message to your customers about how you can help solve their problems.

Social media can be a great tool for accomplishing this but it will take some time and work to do it properly.  This is where you can separate yourself from many of your competitors.  Following are some social media tips for informing your customers about what you have to offer.

  1. Make sure that your social media profiles are complete and comprehensive.  Some social media profiles like LinkedIn rank very high in search engine optimization.  Make sure that your profile contains the keywords that your customers are searching on.
  2. For keyword research, make sure that you utilize tools like Google Planner, formerly known as Google Keyword Tool.  Although this tool is part of the Google Adwords site, you do not need to purchase an Adword campaign in order to use the tool.
  3. Make sure that you update your website often with your latest products and services.

Educate

Sometimes you will find that you need to educate your customers on what they need.  They may understand the problem they are having but not know what solutions are available to them.  This is a case of “not knowing” what you don’t know.

One of the most effective ways to educate your customers is to offer great, free content that will address their problems.  Why free?  Many people will not value a solution when they are not aware of the problem.  For instance, suppose you have developed a great product to help people optimize their marketing funnels.  Depending on who your customers are, many may not even know what a “marketing funnel” is.  Therefore, they will not see the value of your product.

However, if you did a free webinar on how to improve sales using an optimized marketing funnel, you have a better chance of increasing your own sales.  This process allows you to address a problem that your customer understands very well (the need to improve sales) with a solution that they may not be very familiar with (optimized marketing funnels).

Convince

Once you have informed your customers of what you can do for them and possibly even educated your customers on a particular product/service, you must convince them that you are the one they should choose.  It’s a simple question.  Why should they hire you?  Why should they buy your product?

There are tons of literature out there about the psychological reasons people purchase the way that they do.  Consider some of these reasons.

  1. Proven Track Record – People may buy from you because you have proven that you can deliver the results that you claim.  Make sure that you have a system in place for asking and receiving testimonials from previous clients.  Post those on your website and other social media platforms.
  2. Brand Recognition – People may buy from you because they recognize you as a leader in the industry.  Becoming a leader in an industry does not mean that you have to be number 1 or even number 100.  It means that you are active in the industry that you have chosen.  That could mean attending the right networking functions or being part of the right online communities.
  3. Gut Feeling – People may buy from you because they feel something when they visit your website or see your social media post.  Don’t underestimate the power of “gut feelings.”  While it may seem like there is little that you can do to influence this, that is not true.  Everything that you do sets a tone that others see and feel.  What tone does your website present?  Is it happy and uplifting or is it strong and powerful?  This is where knowing your customer is key.  An exercise website that has a strong and powerful tone may not appeal to someone that is looking to gradually get into exercise.  However, it may be the exact tone needed to attract those interested in bodybuilding.

Communication is the key.  Actually, it is the ONLY key you have to demonstrate to your customers that they should purchase from you.  That may sound pretty simply, but it can get pretty complicated.

Communication happens on so many levels.  There is traditional business communications in the form of telephone calls, mail advertising and television commercials.  However, with social media, communication has taken on a new dimension.

There are many great classes out there on how to establish your brand and advertise on social media.  But here are some things to consider.

  • Make sure your social media profiles are COMPLETE!
  • Business profile pages are important.  While you can conduct business on your personal profile pages, most experts frown on this practice.
  • Use different types of platforms to deliver your sales message. Include photos and videos where appropriate.
  • Learn how to write good sales copy BEFORE you start running ads on Google, Facebook and Twitter.
  • Sometimes, not having a presence on social media can say a lot about your brand in a negative way.
  • Make sure that you communicate how your product/service will meet your customer’s needs.  It is all about THEM.

You may not have the opportunity to actually talk with your potential clients, where they can hear the passion in your voice and you can answer their questions right there on the spot.  Make sure that your written, audio and video presentations reveal your desire to help them solve their problem.