You’re probably thinking, “Not another list of social marketing tips, what makes these tips any different than the rest?” To start, most lists likely don’t tell you how to kill it specifically in the Las Vegas retail market. Since we live, eat and work here, we understand the landscape. Plus, we are marketers. Marketers who help Las Vegas businesses grow their brand each and every day. Below are some simple, but effective tips (from our own experiences) on how to take advantage of endless opportunities that lie inside the social marketing arena.
Social marketing is a powerful, affordable tool for Las Vegas retail businesses
As a Las Vegas retailer you’re going to have to fight hard to be heard. Las Vegas is the most saturated retail market in the U.S. The Las Vegas retail landscape changes daily almost as fast as the last implosion. To stand out among the crowd and withstand the tests of time you’re going to need a comprehensive social marketing strategy to build your brand awareness.
Below are 5 basic tips to help you kick start your social marketing success.
Choose the right social marketing networks
One size does not fit all. And, NO, you don’t have to be on every social network out there to generate quality brand awareness and foot traffic to your Las Vegas store. Ask yourself a few simple questions:
- Which social marketing networks do my current customers use?
- Which networks are my main competitors finding the most success on?
- Which social marketing networks are my ideal customers the most active on?
Getting clear answers on these questions will help you figure out which social networks to attack first.
Industry Pro Know: Facebook is the #1 heavy hitter in the retail world and it’s a great platform for promoting brand awareness. Twitter is generally where many consumers candidly share their opinions about a wide-range of brand-oriented topics the most. In fact, 80% of users mention brands specifically in their tweets.
Generate quality content
“Is content really the king?” By now you’ve likely heard this statement countless of times. To freshen it up a bit let’s say, “Is content really King of Las Vegas?”
When you create quality content, it shows that you’re a trusted organization who understand their industry and their audience. Well written content resonates better with your audience. When sharing content, always try to include eye-catching, high quality photos and visuals. By delivering true visual and tone to your brand’s voice, this will help to build a loyal following.
Industry Pro Know: To increase your brand awareness edge even more so, add text overlays to your photos and incorporate your logo when at all possible. Consumers are highly visual and will respond better to graphics than solely text. (see the below example of what I mean here.)
Seek and leverage Las Vegas social media influencers
What is a Las Vegas social media influencer? These are the folks who have a broad social network. Social media influencers literally live and die by sharing what they do, love or consume here in Las Vegas. They check in frequently and the people in their network often look to them as a trusted resource for the newest and greatest thing to happen next. These social marketing mavericks typically have a thousand plus friends and three thousand plus Twitter followers etc.
If you are a new brand entering the Las Vegas retail market, you need to cut through the social noise and get to the heart of the online social scene fast. Sniffing out a few of these social marketing mavericks and making friends with them can help you to spread the word about your product or service fast. Take notice and make lists of any social media influencers your recognize online. Reach out to them directly; maybe give them a FREE sampling of your products. If they like you and your products and next thing you know they will be tweeting, posting and blogging about them.
Industry Pro Know: Invite the influencer to your brick and mortar, snap a pic and showcase them as they shop or interact with a sales associate etc. This level of interaction will encourage them to share your content with their own personal network even more so. Social media is about cultivating real relationships with your audience. This is a simple, yet highly effective organic way to get your brand discovered swiftly.
Monitor and search for any brand mentions
Searching for brand mentions can help you discover any consumer concerns or questions lingering about your brand. Brand monitoring allows you to quickly address any complaints that hit the World Wide Web. When addressing complaints, do so in your favor. So what does this mean? It mean to never respond to a negative complaint with a negative answer or response. You’re trying to build your brand, not destroy it it. Be the bigger person, be positive no matter what the situation may entail.
Industry Pro Know: Google Alerts is a simple and FREE tool that allows you to monitor your brand in real-time. Google alerts gives you the option of customizing brand-relevant keywords and selecting how often you receive alerts, the source of your mentions, and how many results you’d like to see.
Always be sure to thank anyone who endorses your brand. And respond to complaints in a timely fashion. Consider preparing 5 or 6 canned responses that you can access from your tablet or mobile phone in a Google Doc. Change the name, product or service to customize the final piece. Having this ready allows you to be timely in your responses.
Hearing the good things everyone is tweeting and posting about can become boring. Reading a ranting post from someone is juicy gossip that can turn viral fast. Being responsive shows you are real, accessible and truly care about what customers are saying about your brand. Believe it or not, how you respond to your audience during a complaint can actually build your brand perception quicker than anything.
Evaluate your social marketing approach
As your content begins to gain traction online, take the time to sit back and assess what you’ve done well – and not so well. Observe what your fans are doing. Once again ask yourself a few simple questions:
- What time of the day is my audience engaging the most with my posts and tweets?
- Which types of posts or tweets is my social audience responding the most over time?
- Am I providing valuable information that matters to my audience?
Once you realize what drives the engagement factor, apply adjustments moving forward. When used correctly, social marketing can be a powerful tool to boost your sales and general brand awareness.
Industry Pro Know: Social marketing is not about hard selling or screaming buy me, buy me to the customer. Sure it is good to offer special deals and limited time offers when appropriate. However, taking a soft sell approach can gain you more ground in the long term. For example, write posts or showcase visuals that convey to the consumer how your products or services can enhance their life.
Need some help getting started? We can get your retail store to hit the ground running strong by developing a Social Marketing strategy to meet your goals and budget.
Note about the author: Marketing Coordinator, A.K.A, Digital Diva, ShaDrena has spent the last four plus years posting, tweeting and blogging on behalf of local and nationally recognized startup and nonprofit brands. From content creation, to contribution on social marketing plan design and delivery – say hello to ShaDrena. In off hours, you can catch ShaDrena surfing the web reading about latest pop culture and social marketing trends via HubSpot, NewsCred, AdAge or Digiday.