As an entrepreneur, you probably have a good social media presence and strive to get visibility, build brand awareness, engage and grow your audience to the best of your abilities. All that is very good, but another aspect could use your attention – selling via social media.
Along with e-mail, content marketing and SEO strategies, employing social media to drive up your sales has great potential, especially since these platforms have more traffic during the pandemic.
There is both direct and indirect revenue to be gained from this, so here are a few tips on how to proceed.
1. Be where most of your audience is
Even if you already have established pages, feel like you are doing good, and are comfortable with your social media presence, take a closer look at the demographics you are targeting.
It’s true that there are many social media platforms out there and even more set up shop every day. It’s also true that the layouts, rules, and way of operating change quite a lot, so you already have to keep up with that.
But the only way you’ll increase your sales is if you reach the right audience and talk to them in an effective way.
You can choose a hashtag that fits your message best and then run an analysis through one of the available tools, such as Keyhole, and you’ll get a chart of the top domains where that is used. Then you can see if your channels are consistent with where your target audience is.
Read more: 5 Useful tips on reaching the right audience for your online course
2. Publish informative blog posts and how-to content
Especially when you are running an e-learning business, you want to be seen as an authority in the field. There is no better way to do that than to show that you are both knowledgeable and can communicate that information in an engaging way.
Employing this kind of informational content gives a much broader context to what you are selling while also acting as a sample for your potential customers. Building relationships and gaining trust are great avenues towards increasing your client base.
This type of content is not only sought after and engaging but can also act as a lead or conversion magnet. Therefore, you need to be mindful of addressing subjects that are of genuine interest to your intended audience.
Read more: Common questions about blogging to promote online courses
3. Harness the potential of customer advocacy
People care a lot about peer reviews. A product or service is much more appealing if it is highly recommended (in a genuine way) by people who have already used it. They don’t need to be influencers (though there is a lot to be gained from employing influencer marketing as well) but individuals who already know and have good things to say about your brand.
You can find them among the ones who leave positive comments on your posts or by conducting hashtag searches to see who is talking about you online. Engage in conversations with those people and invite them (and their peers) to give you honest reviews and testimonials for your page.
Read more: 6 Awesome tips to get more customer reviews for your online course [INFOGRAPHIC]
It’s all right to incentivize this, but don’t literally pay for positive feedback – it will most probably not sound sincere at all, and your audience will know something's up, which can damage your reputation.
4. Consider investing in social media advertising
You know how you "magically" get recommendations for precisely what you were looking for? That’s because social media platforms have really good AI behind them and can compute a lot of data to make accurate predictions about user preferences.
I’m not going to start a debate about the ethics of this; I’m just saying that’s how it works. If you get on board, your campaigns will reach an audience that has not yet heard about you but would be interested in what you're offering.
Each social media platform has an option to either create ads or promote your existing content. This will get you higher visibility and spread your message to individuals who will find it relevant, thus significantly improving the odds of increasing course sales.
The catch is that you have to be constantly mindful of changes. These algorithms are constantly tweaked by the platforms.
Read more: Promoting your online course through online ads: What are your options?
Social media is no longer a simple pastime. It’s a serious business and can get you serious business if you know how to leverage it.