This article is provided in partnership with Constant Contact.
Did you know that social media is really important for a business’s success? Well, of course you did. But do you know how important it is?
Using social media properly is as essential as excellent customer service skills or a sustainable business model. According to Business2Community, a whopping 70 percent of the U.S. population has at least one social networking profile, and more than half of the population uses two or more social networks. Those stats are particularly impressive when you consider how much of the U.S. population is made up of children and older folk. And, just think of all the millennials who not only have a Facebook account, but also Twitter, Instagram, Pinterest, Snapchat and LinkedIn, not to mention the social media dating options like Tinder. For better or worse, there’s no denying we live in a social media world.
(Photo courtesy of Constant Contact)
Despite the massive growth in social media use, according to the digital communications platform Ving, email is still the most popular commercial communication tool for 74 percent of all adult internet users. Yes, email is still even more popular than pizza ordering apps and Snapchat. But why is that? Email is really effective for getting a message directly in front of a customer’s eyes. Because of its swiftness and relative intimacy, email can work well to boost traffic to your business’s social media pages. Below are a few tips to follow to boost your business’s social media profiles using email.
Tip 1: Utilize Cost-Effective Methods To Grow Your Email List And Social Media Presence
As you work to grow your social media presence and email list, make sure you don’t forget the technology you already have at your disposal. Constant Contact Senior Manager of Content and Social Media Marketing Dave Charest has been working in the digital marketing space for over a decade, and has a wealth of insight to share on the matter. “Take advantage of the list building tools your email service provider makes available to you,” says Charest. “Make sure it’s part of your employees’ process to ask people to sign up for your email list.” Charest also suggests using low-cost, efficient methods like physical and app-based sign-up lists, text-to-join and embeddable sign-up lists on your website, and your company’s Facebook page, to grow your email list.
Similarly, you’ll need to let people know what social channels you’re on. Put up signs in your store and links on your website that will let your customers know where they can follow all the great things that your company is involved in. “When new people subscribe to your email list, send a welcome email that includes links and reasons why someone should follow you on those social channels,” says Charest. “Make sure those links are at the bottom of your regular emails as well.”
As they are both internet-based marketing channels, email and social media complement each other really well. Although you’ll likely get results from cross promoting both channels, you should still try to transition your social media followers into email subscribers. That way, you can interact with your customers directly without having to wonder if your message is getting lost in an endless stream of direct messages and game requests. (We’re looking at you, Candy Crush Saga.)
Tip 2: Integrate Email And Social Media Marketing
Like Beyoncé, don’t be afraid to pick and choose which social media platforms will work the best when communicating with current and potential customers. Twitter is a busy place, and your company may very well get lost in the shuffle. Likewise, make sure that the information you share on social media isn’t lost by integrating that content into your emails. Charest has a great suggestion on how you can transform your most passionate customers into enthusiastic brand ambassadors. “This is another case where you want to take advantage of the tools available to you,” says Charest. “I mentioned including links to your social channels in every email earlier. Another thing to consider would be including a share bar in your emails so subscribers can easily share the information or offers with their friends on their personal channels.”
You can also share a copy of select emails directly to your own social channels. Constant Contact can import photos you share on Facebook and Instagram, so you can use them in your email campaigns. The other thing to keep in mind is to use social media as a way to complement the messages you’re sending via email. So if you’re talking about your new cheese of the month club in email for example, you may use your social channels to show your staff preparing the selections for the upcoming month.
Tip 3: Send An Email Newsletter
Email newsletters are the Swiss Army Knives of marketing. They serve as fantastic multi-purpose marketing tools to remind customers that your company exists; they let customers know what promotions you’re currently running, giving them an easy way to share that information with their friends and families.
How often should you be sending out email newsletters, and what’s essential to include in them? “Frequency depends on your business goals,” says Charest. “We typically see emails fall into two categories: time-based promotions and non-promotional emails. Time-based promotions have a date attached to them, such as a sale or an event. We recommend a short three-email series for these time-base promotions: an announcement, a reminder and a last chance message. For non-promotional emails, where you share valuable information with your customers, we recommend at least one per month.”
This article was written by Mario McKellop and Michelle Guilbeau via Examiner.com for CBS Small Business Pulse.
For more information on email marketing, visit Constant Contact.