A lot of businesses use social media as a marketing tool. The trick is to use it in ways that will set your company apart from the rest, especially your direct competition. Here are four ideas on how you might do that.
1. Invite visuals
With all the smartphones and other portable devices, photos and videos are easy for people to produce. And produce them they do – by the boatload. You can effectively engage your customers and other social media followers by inviting them to share their own favorite photos or videos along with an optional brief narrative. According to Social Media Examiner, 87% of shared Facebook posts contained photos. And Twitter reports that tweets containing photos get a 35% increase in retweets from verified users.
2. Sponsor a contest
The photo/video-sharing idea above could be expanded to a contest. One way to do it is to have people vote for the best photo or video, and award a prize to the winner. Another option would be to have a simple drawing to determine the winner. But you don’t have to limit yourself to a photo or video contest. You could invite your social media followers to register online for a prize drawing, and invite their friends and followers to do the same.
3. Encourage charitable giving
Another idea is to encourage your customers and social media followers to contribute to a charitable cause. You could choose to support a national charity like Wounded Warrior Project or Shriners Hospitals for Children, or a local initiative in your area.
Raising the money could be accomplished by offering to donate a certain percentage of sales to the charity. It could also be done by soliciting donations from your customers, then giving them a gift to thank them for participating. Still another option would be to sponsor a fund-raising event like a run/walk where participants secure pledges for every mile they run or walk. Whichever way you choose to do it, encouraging charitable giving is not only good marketing, it’s good citizenship.
4. Celebrate an annual holiday
Virtually all businesses create holiday-themed marketing campaigns, especially at Christmastime. And you should certainly do that too. But to really set your business apart from the rest, consider adopting a lesser-known holiday as the focal point for an annual marketing campaign. There are thousands to choose from. Just go to DaysOfTheYear.com and find a holiday that suits your needs. Then plan and execute an annual event around it.