We now get over 1 in 4 of our new customers through social media and that proportion is growing all the time.
Not only is it more cost-effective than PPC or traditional advertising but it’s also a great way to build a relationship with someone we may never meet.
We don’t claim to be experts and are still learning. That said, hopefully some of what we have learned so far will help you to grow your business.
With a background in property law, until starting Fixflo I had no experience of using social media for business. Now it’s so critical to the operation and growth of our business that I don’t know what we would do without it.
The lessons we have learned can be summarised as: indentify, engage and build!
Before you start using social media for your business try to picture the type of people you would like to engage with. The more narrowly defined they are the better you will be able to engage with them.
For Fixflo our ideal audience works in the residential property sector and either works as a property manager or has a property manager in their team. For letting agencies or estate agencies it is likely that geographical and age segmentations are more appropriate.
Once you know whom you would like to engage with, follow them and find out what they are interested in. Social media requires a different mind-set to advertising. You aim should be to provide your audience with quality content on issues that concern them rather than pumping out sales messages. Our approach is that on social media we don’t sell but sometimes our audience chooses to buy.
Build a clear, honest and consistent voice across all of your social media platforms. That means that you should not be afraid to voice your opinions because they are what people are interested in.
Taking an example relevant to letting agents, it’s easy enough to find facts about a new train station in your area but what slant do you have that adds value to your audience? Will the shape of your High Street change? Will demand for a particular school increase? Will an overlooked part of town become more gentrified?
Social media is a great equaliser for smaller companies. Your voice can carry more weight than a better-funded competitor if you build a community around you. To do this you need to take a real interest in your audience and do what you can to help them.
Work from the basis that there is no online/offline distinction. It’s just you being a trusted source of knowledge and assistance. Promote local events, introduce people where there is a synergy and support your audience because as you know, they are the people you would most like to engage with.