By: Steve Hauber, President, Valassis Local Solutions
Published Thursday, Nov 16, 2017
Small Business Saturday (SBS) is the one day a year when small businesses get the attention they deserve. Take advantage of that day to get your business noticed. According to Infusionsoft.com, of the 2,000 small businesses surveyed who planned to promote their business for SBS in 2016, 70 percent said they get the highest return on investment (ROI) from digital marketing. Social media marketing is one of the most effective segments of digital marketing – it will reach beyond your web and email audience and it’s inexpensive.
Create a hashtag – It should reflect your business’ name or the name of your SBS promotion. Be clever! When appropriate to the content, include hashtags like #shopsmall or #smallbiz, or find and use local hashtags or other relevant hashtags to gain even more exposure for your posts. Since hashtags have become the keywords for social media marketing, it’s important to research them to find the ones that will be most effective.
Create custom URLs – Use bit.ly or a custom URL to design links to your web pages. Your custom URL should incorporate your business’ name. It’s one more way to get your brand noticed across social media platforms and a recognizable name in a link builds trust in your brand as well. Additionally, you can track the data of each URL, which is important for gauging success.
Provide incentives – Try promotions, discounts, coupons, giveaways, contests – these are tried-and-true ways to gain not only new customers but new followers.
Cross-promote. Use the marketing tools you already have at your disposal. Local media such as newspapers or coupon magazines, can get more eyes on your promotion. Use email, text or push notifications announcing your promotion or inviting customers to like or follow your social media pages. Create a landing page on your website dedicated to your SBS promotion and track traffic to it.
Social Media Platform Ideas
Facebook – Eight in 10 adults (79 percent) who are on the internet use Facebook, so if you have something to offer, offer it there.
Twitter – Start a Twitter chat about your SBS promotion, which is a live event focused around a specific topic, or you can join one that’s already been created. Advertise your chat on other social media sites to generate participation.
YouTube – It has more than a billion active users. Creating compelling, share-worthy YouTube videos is a great way to advertise your SBS promotion and get your brand noticed. Create and post videos of new products or something fun your staff is doing. Utilize keywords and mention “Shop Small” in the title or description. You can also include a link to your store or to a coupon or promotion.
Instagram – According to Locowise, 75 percent of Instagram users take action, such as visiting a website, after looking at a post. Post photos of your products with your hashtag leading up to (and after) SBS to promote your brand and to get people to act. Or, combine Instagram’s two strengths and create a photo-hashtag campaign. Prior to SBS, encourage customers coming into your store to take pictures of themselves or of your products and post them on Instagram along with your clever campaign hashtag.
Snapchat – It’s an app that’s loved by millennials (53 percent of users are under 34 years old). If they are your demographic or your target audience, you should have a presence here. Snapchat can be used much like Instagram, although the photos, or snaps, disappear after 24 hours. With some careful planning, you can create a story using a mix of photos, videos, captions and drawings to offer an engaging narrative over a 24-hour period. How about “a day in the life of your business?”
Pinterest – This is a wonderful platform for organizing pictures in a way for customers to find them. Create a special Pinterest board just for SBS that showcases any new products or promotions you will be launching that day.
With a little planning and the right social media marketing approach, you can seize SBS and watch the sales roll in!