In order to move forward with a client in regards to social media management, we first have to define who the client is as a brand. The second step is to define who the client is trying to reach. Is business to consumer marketing effective via social media? Alter Endeavors works with several B2C (business to consumer) companies; B2C meaning that that business wants to appeal to consumers, rather than other businesses.
Once we establish the brand’s target audience, we ask questions like, “Are their potential customers on-line?” and “What age group are we trying to reach?” The answers to these questions lead to a profile, which tells us not only who our audience consists of, but research confirms their purchasing habits and preferences.
The social media platforms that align closest with the above are our first priority. While it is important that every B2C company has a presence on Facebook and Twitter in this day and age, we are very selective about what other platforms we are active on. In our opinion, it is better to be missing from a platform than to do it half way. It is better for a customer to see “not found” on Instagram rather than see a single photo posted over 52 weeks ago.
Merely being active on platforms where your customers are isn’t enough. For companies that offer consumers products and services, they need to establish why a user should interact with the brand outside of the point of purchase or period of service. There needs to be a consistent posting schedule of relevant information, whether it has to do directly with the product or service, general industry news or events happening in the community. We recognize that establishing the motivation for a post is just as important as what you actually post. B2C companies are problem solvers and their social media channels should do the same, by addressing frequently asked questions and bringing new information to the audience’s attention.
What are the best social media platforms for business to consumer marketing? Here are some of the better ones with examples of the best ways to utilize them:
Facebook – An up-to-date Facebook page is a must, as it not only acts as another business listing, but gives customers a place to read information about your brand and leave feedback. Facebook allows a brand to showcase its personality and interact with the community it aims to serve. We recommend including links and pictures in your posts to avoid being lost in a user’s newsfeed.
Twitter – This platform requires consistent interaction in order to stay relevant. You can more or less use the same content as you would post on Facebook, as well as share industry information with your followers by simply re-tweeting. Twitter is a high-speed platform, so content can be posted multiple times a day to reach different users. It is a platform to show your support to brands you work or share a community with.
Pinterest/Houzz – Pinterest is most often used for inspiration, whether it’s fitness related or a place to store recipes. Houzz is also used for inspiration, but specifically for residential home design and decor. These are excellent channels to display photos of projects completed, giving the user an idea of what your company is capable of. Unlike Twitter, content has a longer shelf life on these platforms and doesn’t need to be updated daily to be worthwhile.
Instagram – Instagram is a photo-based platform and requires extensive access to pictures. It is a popular platform for clothing brands, health products and restaurants. There are numerous Austin Instagram accounts dedicated to food, so we make sure that our brick & mortar clients with great food are present and accounted for on Instagram! Brands that offer products are able to source photos from buyers and announce new releases or sales, while service providers should work to keep Instagram updated with project photos.
Video (Snapchat/Facebook Live/Youtube) – Behind the scenes video can be a useful marketing tool, but only if the action caught on camera is worth watching. For both service & product based companies, perhaps a demonstrative how-to would be helpful to your audience. How often you are able to capture interesting content would dictate which platform to pursue, as Snapchat needs to be updated daily, and Facebook Live and Youtube can be updated more sporadically and referred back to in the future.
Before creating brand profiles on every possible social media channel, decide which platforms will be most effective for business to consumer marketing with your company. Being selective will not only help you spend your time & money effectively, but it will also help attract your ideal customer or client. Simply put: be where your target audience is.