Instagram – Can followers turn into revenue?

Facebook, twitter, youtube, blogs, linkedin, and pinterest are undoubtedly among the top social media platforms present today.  With all the social media platforms offered today companies tend to wonder what platforms would work best for them and which ones are here to stay and which ones will be gone tomorrow.

Instagram being a new social media platform, companies are now wondering is this something that they should be taking advantage of.  Is there any return from using this service?

Instagram is a great platform to be on when it comes to showcasing your company.  With the picture functionality  you are able to show products, processes, employees, and sneak peeks.  Pictures are great for creating a quick interest or follower.  Now that you are using pictures to create followers and interest how on Earth will these pictures generate money?

A practiced I developed here at GMC Interactive to get the most out of instagram is “SUPRISE COUPONING.”  This practice keeps followers checking back on your company and keeps them following you.  With “SURPRISE COUNPONING” you create excitement behind your company.  You will be able to create a sense of urgency with your customers because they must act now!  This will generate additional foot traffic to your company.

An example of “SURPRISE COUPONING”  would work like this:

Let’s pretend you own an ice cream stand alone store.  You have many followers at this point on your instagram and you post a “SURPRISE COUPON.”  This coupon would only be available on that day or even between certain hours.  The coupon would read “first 5 customers to show this picture receive a free 12 oz cone.”  Your followers now see this coupon and everyone of them is thinking about free ice cream, but more importantly ICE CREAM.  You create a craving for your brand.  You create excitement for your brand.  You create a sense of urgency for your customers.  You also create a kick back to your followers that support you.  Yes, you would be giving away free cones, but the customers (customers 6-15) that  missed out on the promotion will be in your store and more prone to buy because not only do they smell your products, but they are inside your doors!

So, yes instagram followers can turn into additional revenue.  For more information on “SUPRISE COUPONING” or any social media concerns contact me or GMC Interactive.  Walk Good my friends!


Franchise using Corporate Marketing

Everyone today feels they can steer a company in the right direction using social media.  It does not take a rocket scientist or even a marketing student to know that social media is the present and future in content management and SEO.  Taking advantage of social media is a great step, but being able to utilize social media is where it gets tricky for most businesses, especially smaller businesses.  Knowing what social media platforms to take advantage of as well is something you have to think about.

Now for the meaning of this BLOG.  I wanted to talk about franchises and their involvement with social media and why not to rely on corporate marketing and especially corporate social media pages.  A franchise to me is equivalent to a small business.  So you must market like a small business.  Yes you do have the brand recognition which separates you from most small businesses but can you rely on this primarily to keep consumers in your store continually?  NOPE sorry you can not and for multiple reasons.

Individual franchises that only utilize corporate marketing have a high “going out of business rate.”  Which to me is not what you want to excel in when it comes to business.  Using corporate marketing, especially social media platforms kills your business’s personal touch to the community.  You come across as “I just want your money”  when you should be coming across as “we appreciate your business.”

Consumers interaction with corporate pages is almost fake, even if their are quick replies.  You do not know who are talking to.  Perhaps someone across seas or many states away or is this automated?  I do not know one person that enjoys an automated phone call.  Posts don’t stick like local pages and there are so many posts occurring that your posts can get lost with ease.  Also each store offers different products and different promotions.  This can discredit some of your stores which will result in profit loss.

Now do not get me wrong corporate pages are useful.  There is definitely room for them.  However, they just should not be relied on.  They usually have better strategies and better displays, graphics.  Obviously a bigger budget.  Corporate pages are great when problems arise.  Corporate can be very good at fixing problems, but this does not change that each franchise should have their own local social media platform approach.

Having a local social media approach is very important because it shows community values.  It shows a closeness to the consumer that can not be beat.  Everyone wants to be recognized and being active in the community and active with your customers will only increase your customer base but most importantly create customer loyalty, which helps businesses get through the slow months.  With customer loyalty and continual growth your slow months become busy months and your busy months become GREAT MONTHS.  The family approach!

Consumers want to be appreciated for their business.  There are multiple businesses out there and numerous competitors in each market.  Being able to separate yourself from the competition and appeal to consumers should be every businesses goal.  Being able to do this effectively results in running a successful business.

Another benefit of a local social media approach is consumers sharing on your platform will be able to share with people in the surrounding area.  You will be able to maximize your target audience and since it is local all these individuals interacting are close to your business.  Local pages brings people into your store, corporate platforms do not.  Local pages will only increase your conversion rate.  Lets be serious you can have the nicest facebook, twitter, web site, but if you are not converting traffic to customers then what is the point?  ROI is the only thing that matters!  REVENUE is the only thing that keeps a business running.  So when a company relies on corporate marketing they are pretty much blind folding themselves and hoping it works out.

As a franchise owner you want the corporation to do well but at the end of the day you should really just care about your store.  This is where your money is coming from and it is your responsibility to keep this business open.  Think about it like this.  Imagine a corporation as a cake.  Now image a  franchise is just a piece of that cake.  Now image that a consumer is a baby ready for some cake.  Yes you can market the whole cake and hope that the baby eats your piece, basically picks you.  Or you can market your own piece of the cake more, maybe put some icing on top and then the baby (consumer) picks you.  GET IT.  That same cake is already appealing, brand recognition, but individualize your piece so you get the business.  Stand out.

GMC Interactive is helping businesses succeed every day.  LEARN HOW WE CAN HELP YOU.