How to connect with your customers through social media

15 Aug 2019

Almost 80% of consumers admit a brand’s social media activity makes them more likely to buy it. Bira’s Paige Fox gives some tips on how to turn up your social media volume.

NOW MORE THAN ever businesses need to be highly-adaptable with their online marketing. Early in April, British cosmetics firm Lush UK announced it was “tired of fighting with algorithms” and did not want to pay to appear in newsfeeds. But when social media plays such a vital part in getting consumers through the door or purchasing online, is the decision to abandon social media all-together the right solution, or are businesses better off getting more creative with their social media campaigns?

Each type of business may find different marketing channels work better than others, but according to a recent study by the Internet Advertising Bureau UK, nearly 80% of consumers are inclined to buy more frequently because of a brand’s presence on social media.

So, how can your business cut through the noise on social media?

Studies repeatedly have shown people rely on emotions to make brand and purchasing decisions. That’s why the best brands focus their marketing and advertising on emotional appeal. An easy way to evoke emotion is by providing content - especially video content - based on previous customer feedback/ testimonials. Showcasing real-life stories on how previous customers have used your products, not only immerses potential customers into a relatable scenario, but further reinforces your product’s value to your target audience.

Don’t worry if you don’t have a huge budget to hire videographers. IGTV, Facebook Live and Periscope Live video platforms can be incredibly engaging. You could inter-view and showcase loyal customers, film a business event or highlight a new product to launch exclusively to your followers before displaying it in your shop.


Childrenswear designer and Bira member Rachel Riley features British DJ and model Vogue Williams and Spencer Matthews of Made in Chelsea with their son Theodore in matching Rachel Riley outfits.

Facebook and Instagram are making it harder for business accounts to reach their following or potential audience. Consider influencer marketing within your social media strategy to tell engaging stories across social media, at scale. Apps like Upfluence can help you to find the right influencers for your business; it’s a self-service influencer discovery platform, targeting influencers on the main social channels, as well as the blogosphere.

Bira members can also discover who influences the conversation surrounding their industry with the Maybe* social media platform. The Maybe* platform allows you to benchmark your social media performance and helps you use it to increase your footfall and sales at your bricks and mortar business.

Making social connections The-People-Shop-1

Independent business The People Shop, located in Birmingham, promotes a charcoal linen tunic dress on its social media, utilising Instagram product tagging.

It’s time to start utilising shoppable media if you haven’t already. Since Facebook brought Instagram, the latter has quickly become an extension to retailers’ websites. Shoppable media on Instagram allows businesses to tag products on their posts - creating a seamless and mobile-friendly online funnel, from product browsing on social media to purchase checkout.

How do you know if your business will get approved? Here are the criteria:

  • Make sure you have the latest version of the Instagram app.
  • Convert your Instagram account into a business profile.
  • Be an admin on a Page or Business Manager account.
  • You must have a product catalogue associated with a shop on Facebook.
  • You must sell eligible physical goods, mean-ing no services.

Finally, it’s not just enough to schedule posts on business social media (although this is a good start). Consumers are asking for more conversational and genuine content. It’s important that your business has a voice. Why not join a few local Facebook Groups and even start your own customer Facebook Group when you feel ready? This gives you the opportunity to listen and interact with your most engaged customers.

Top tip: Avoid the “hard sell” on Facebook groups. These spaces are for creating conversation and answering questions, that will provide genuine value to your audiences’ experience of your brand.

Making social connections Wildoats
Bira and NAHS member Wild Oats’ impressive Instagram profile features staff members as well as products.

Connect with Bira on Instagram, Facebook, Twitter and LinkedIn and don’t forget to tag us in your posts so we can reshare your content.


Join Bira membership today

For advice on creating a social media policy or dealing with an employee’s social media conduct, contact Bira Legal.

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