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Social media to test and sell

Social media is an essential channel for your business! I will never stop saying it! And indeed, Meet an entrepreneur is full of tips to help you optimise this part of your business: how to approach social networks, the different types of posts, the content calendar, etc.

But there is another aspect to consider in your use of these channels: sales! I am thinking more specifically of two particular aspects: testing your idea and selling your product or service. Even if these two contexts are different, the objective remains the same: to make your target click on your post (and the associated link). This allows you to test, at a lower cost (yes, it's not free...) your business idea, the attractiveness of one product compared to another, and even the sales pitch around your product or service!

General good practices

Not only does each social media network have its own technique for creating a successful post, but you should know that these preferences vary regularly. The algorithms are constantly evolving to force the frequent and recurrent use of a particular network. As a result, you'll see that I don't address any specific social media platform in this article.

Instead, I will try to give you the best ways to venture into the world of social media by sharing with you the best practices that are valid for all platforms! Then, it will be up to you to decide which one to use these tips on, depending on your target.

Start by defining the objective of your campaign

It may seem obvious, but in our hurry, we often miss this step! The first question to ask yourself is simple: what do you want to achieve with your paid advertising on a given social media platform? Sales? Appointments? Email addresses to test and/or prepare the launch of your product? Etc. For each campaign, your decisions and strategy will differ depending on your objective. Only after you have made up your mind on this question can you concentrate on the rest. Or even simply define the most relevant call-to-action!

Target the right audience

This is a key element in all aspects of your business, we can't stress this enough! Normally, at this stage, you have your persona in mind, so you can use this information to refine your targeting.

All social media platforms offer different levels of depth in this regard. In my experience, I find Facebook to be the most sophisticated (it's even scary sometimes!).

Once you are clear on the persona question - and you have verified it! - choose your market based on the different criteria: location, age, interests, industry, behaviour, etc.

I recommend that you test several different types of audiences. This will allow you to compare the results and keep the one that works best. Typically, there are three levels of relevant targeting:

  • a broad audience where you filter only by geography (very important in Luxembourg!)
  • an audience with interests and behaviours that are broadly similar to your persona
  • and finally, a similar audience but based on the visitors to your website, your customer contacts or prospects.

If your target audience includes several persona, you will of course have to repeat the exercise for each one.

For example, if you are starting out as an interior decorator, you might want to research people who are interested in decorating, people who subscribe to property search pages or people who have recently announced a change in family status.

Maximise the appeal of your content

This is about using the key information that will work best for your target audience. I can tell you in advance that "I'm making this, do you want it?" posts will not work! Get into the habit of putting yourself in the shoes of your client or prospect and thinking about what interests him/her. There are two types of information that usually work well:

  • the benefits of your product: how does your product provide a concrete solution to your target's problem? We've already covered this in our article on copywriting techniques, but it works everywhere! You can list them and produce one post per distinct benefit. A post that tries to cover all of them will be less comprehensive and therefore less effective.
  • social proof: a marketing term that includes any means of showing people that other users have already tested and validated your product or service. We are talking here about "customer testimonials" in all their forms. This is the technique of choice for creating a sense of trust and legitimacy around your brand. If you are in a B2B niche, consider putting forward the logos of the brands mentioned if you think your target audience knows them. Another option that's always popular on social media is to post a video, as long as it's short (less than 30 seconds) and well shot. A poorly shot video will, on the other hand, give your company an unprofessional image...

Take care of your visual presentation

Don't underestimate this aspect! It's the presentation that will catch your target's attention and make them stop scrolling and then click on your ad. If you have followed our advice and already have a graphic charter, you can use it to ensure that each post reflects your brand identity. But beyond that, think about switching between different successful formats:

  • The still image: the simplest and most affordable format that allows people to identify with and project themselves into the discourse.
  • The carousel: all networks now offer it, it allows you to better reflect an atmosphere, a collection, but also to develop a storytelling more effectively while still being easier to produce than a video.
  • The video (or GIF!): as I mentioned above, we are naturally more attracted by an animated image rather than a frozen one. This format therefore has a lot of potential but can also become a trap: a low-quality video would do a disservice to both your campaign and your brand. Note that the first few seconds are crucial!

You can find inspiration on this site which gathers successful examples of Facebook ads by context. You can also search the Ads library for similar posts that have worked well.

Don’t blow out your budget

Even if it may seem obvious, I prefer to underline that there is no need to spend thousands of euros on a social media campaign when you are a young company! Of course, there is a customer acquisition cost that varies enormously depending on your criteria for targeting, but first test with a few dozen euros before investing larger amounts.

You now have the keys to try your first campaign! Remember to take advantage of the statistics offered by the different platforms to learn from them and refine your targeting or your offer as you go along.

Find more resources to help you on your entrepreneurial journey here !

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