Retail startups are becoming more popular by the day all around the world, and as the market expands, so does the need for marketing when keeping up with the competition. In terms of marketing, the best shot a retail startup has is social media. Cost effective, quick and easy to use, social media is a great way for retail startups to interact with their consumers, market their products, and see what other retail stores are doing.
Already one of the greatest ways to market clothing lines, many retail startups around the world have made it big on the internet. Websites such as Etsy and Facebook are great ways for retail startups to connect with users. Even stores like Forever21 and Claires have online pages to promote their new clothes and jewelry. But the difficult aspect of using social media understands how to market your retail startup in the best way possible. Here are some ways to use social media to get ahead:
The most important thing to understand when using social media as a retail startup is to target the specific market you’re looking for- this can be done by finding similar pages to your retail store and advertising through their page. The main goal is to make sure that users find your page, but also to not spam other pages with your links. Another great way to promote your retail brand is to use hashtags. Hashtags work on almost every website, and are great ways for people to find your store through customized searches; hashtags aim to sort out information, and by using the right hashtags, consumers will be able to find your website or fanpage by just typing in their interests.
Marketing through facebook is also a cheap, easy way to promote new stock in your retail store. Marketing on the internet can often be tricky, because finding the right balance between how much to post and what to post depends on the market you’re looking for. But studies show that clear, bright advertisements draw users in the most; using more than one font can be distracting, and the main aim is to make sure that the information is clear, and the logo is visible. Paying for advertising on websites like Twitter and Facebook is cost-effective because it reaches millions of people, and targets specific audiences depending on the information you give the website. Marketing on the internet is always more impressionable because users see it more often than say, a billboard, because they spend more time on the internet than driving down one particular road.
Using social media to converse with your users is a way to promote your brand image, as well as make your retail startup seem consumer friendly. Stores such as Urban Outfitters in America or IKEA in Sweden reply to as many questions and comments they can on Facebook, which promotes activity on their page (making it easier to be found) and also makes the company seem consumer-friendly. Websites are even starting to add a comment box at the end of the page, or pages for reviews on products, which can help other users decide what to buy and can help promote your image through real-life comments and not biased ads. Sharing employee recommendations is also recommended, because it helps consumers connect with those working in the company, and will aid the assumption that the employees, having worked with the goods, also approve of the products.
Offering exclusive deals on the internet is a fail-safe way to make consumers willing to spend more. Many websites for retail stores offer discounts, prize packages, and consumer points on their websites to boost sales. This makes consumers feel special because the discount or prize their receiving is specifically given because of their access to the page. Giveaways and puzzles with exclusive content or free goods promote friendly competition, and asking consumers to share pictures, tweet about your store, or send people your link can help get the word out about your store, and also give the buyers something in return.
One thing that brands like Taco Bell or Old Spice have down pat is their ability to connect with their users. When looking through their twitter pages or Facebook pages, it is apparent that they keep a healthy conenction between them and their consumers by joking around, answering questions with witty comments and posting funny pictures. Although this hasn’t yet become popular in the online retail world, it’s a great way to get ahead in the game. In today’s day and age of constant access, providing a close connection between yourself and your consumers is the best way to establish a relationship. Different jokes will attract different markets, and keeping up with internet trends and using them to add a little fun to your page will always draw customers in, and help your brand look internet savvy and fresh.
Using social media to your advantage can help your business boom- all it takes is the right kind of advertising, and drawing consumers in with a friendly image that can help build long-lasting consumer/retailer relationships. The most important thing to remember is that your business can only benefit from social media if it plays it right- no overly flashy advertisements, or crazy offers, just simple friendly responses and small prizes and discounts to keep customers coming back.
Note: This article is written as an inspiration of Jose Carlos Gonzalez Hurtado’s teachings.