How to Fit Social Media Into Your Sales Funnel

Sales (purchase) funnel was defined long time ago. In 1898 to be more exact, long before the first computer was invented. In spite of that, social networks, which are considered to be one of the most important inventions in 21st century, fit like a glove into original sales funnel concept. Before we start inspecting the ways how social networks fit into the purchase funnel model, we need to define it. Typical sales funnel looks something like this:

In this article we will try determine how social networks can enhance the performance of every sales funnel element separately.

Awareness

Social Media Awareness
Image source: pixabay

In order to sell their products, companies need to make consumers aware of their brand. All further contacts between companies and consumers grow from the awareness created in the first phase of the sales funnel. Best way to spark this awareness is by producing interesting, useful and sharable niche-specific content. Social networks play a major role in content marketing strategies, which makes them crucial for raising brand awareness. These are some of the ways how companies can use social networks for this purpose:

  • Create and share niche specific content – to spark current followers’ interest and gain new ones, companies need to share niche-specific content. One of the best examples for the great use of this model is Pampers. They offer interesting and useful ‘how to’ articles and advices on their social media pages, and use it to attract young parents and spark brand’s awareness among this very specific group.
  • Post content made by users – this is a great way to spark user’s interest and enhance spontaneous word-to-mouth marketing campaigns. Company GoPro makes a great use of customer’s photos and videos. Their ‘Photo of the Day’ Instagram series shares customer’s photos, which sparks an interest in this competition as well as in GoPro brand.

Familiarity

Social Media Familiarity
Image source: pixabay
It is the phase where users already know about the brand and want to inspect its benefits and possible disadvantages a little bit more. That’s why companies need to use their social media pages to present their products in the best way. This can be done by:

  • Organizing presentations – before buying certain goods most customers would like to see them in person. That’s why presentations that include sharing samples and other promotional material were always the best way to increase sales. Most social networks come with useful event features that can help you to boost presentation attendance and make it more interesting (by introducing live Tweet display in the background for example).
  • Sharing beautiful imagery – photos can be very viral, and high-res images speak a thousand words. Recent study published by Psychological Science determined that profile photo makes huge impact on first impression of some person or company in a split second. This is why good-quality product photos can significantly boost company’s sales. One of the companies that mastered this type of product promotion is GrubHub, they post photos of delicious looking meals they sell and motivate customers to satisfy their cravings with every post.

Consideration

Social Media Consideration
Image source: pixabay
This is the most critical spot in the whole sales funnel. Consideration phase comes when customer decides to buy certain item, but is still considering which seller, brand or manufacturer to choose. At this point the use of social networks is critical for shifting customer’s attention to benefits of company’s product. This can be done in various creative ways, some of them are:

  • Discount promotion – social networks are great environment for promoting special discounts. For this purpose companies can use their own page’s wall or paid social media ads.
  • Campaigns for special dates – certain dates in the year are connected with shopping and companies can organize social media campaigns that will spark customer’s interests on days like: Christmas, Black Friday, Cyber Monday etc. One of the best examples for this type of promotional campaign is Oreo’s classic horror movie spoof made for Halloween of 2013.

Purchase

Social Media Purchase
Image source: pixabay
Most social networks still don’t have options that allow customers to purchase and pay for products that companies are promoting on their pages. But in recent years many companies and individuals decided to run their stores exclusively through Facebook network. According to Stephen Esketzis, sales funnel expert, social networks also allow companies to be in direct contact with customers and to answer all of their inquires about the product. In order to fully connect the social media channels with your website, you can find all the essential tools in this awesome cheat sheet.

Loyalty

Social Media Loyalty
Image source: pixabay
In this stage companies should focus on fans and followers. Unlike the awareness phase, building loyalty requires direct contact and strong connections between company and its fans. These are some of the basic leads for developing strong customer loyalty:

  • Customer support – many companies shift their customer support to Twitter because of its real-time character. This dynamic social networks allows companies to respond to customer’s request in fast and efficient way.
  • Competitions and rewards – social networks offer great opportunities for organizing various competitions and awarding the most loyal customers. They provide measurable insights on how many people reacted on or shared certain post, and awarding those people with samples, complementary products, discounts or promotional material makes them more loyal and supports them to continue with brand promotion.

Social media completely changed marketing and sales niches, but it fit perfectly well in some of the most traditional forms of sales funnel. That’s why companies should use all new tech trends for boosting their sales and customer’s loyalty.  Only players who constantly follow new trends will be able to stay in the game.

Originally posted 2016-04-06 14:34:11.

About Raul

Raul is a B.Sc. in Innovative entrepreneurship and his main interest is digital marketing for enterprises and small businesses. He is also a regular contributor on technivorz.com

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