CHICAGO — A decade ago, visiting the social media of the day was an entertaining way to kill a few minutes but the concept of utilizing the online channels for business purposes was largely untested.
But today, social media influencers and content creators are everywhere, and the rise of Facebook, Instagram, TikTok and other online media has created new marketing opportunities for self-service laundries.
Achieving success through digital marketing using social media begins and ends with a strong strategy, according to Dennis Diaz, founder of Spynr, an online marketing services firm that works strictly with commercial laundry businesses.
“Social (media) is becoming a search engine,” Diaz says. “Before, it used to be searches for people and brands. Now, people are actually using social media to search for solutions to problems, like they do with search engines.”
Small businesses profit from having a step-by-step guide to help them along their online journey, because wandering into the digital world without a plan costs time and money and could lead to great frustration.
INVITE THE VIEWER IN
It’s commonplace for businesses to want to post store hours, whether they’re currently open or closed, information like that using social media, but it’s equally as important to share varied and sometimes personal content as it is to post regularly.
“When you think about social media as a channel to promote your business, you have to remember that people are on social media because they are bored vs. (using) search engines where they’re actively looking for a solution to a problem,” Diaz says. “When you’re bored, you’re looking for a sense of enjoyment or entertainment.”
Many celebrities are skilled at using social media to record and share scenes of themselves visiting their favorite store, appearing at events, or even cooking a meal at home. It doesn’t matter what the content is, you have to respond to the reason why people are on social media, according to Diaz.
“Certainly, your ad strategy should be focused on what you sell, because there’s a pay per click happening, there’s an event happening that you have to make sure you get a return on,” he says. “When you are posting organically on social platforms, I think it’s fair to say that you want to share information that’s relevant to your audience and to your business but is playful in some respect.”
Are social media evolving in their presentation, or is the audience evolving in terms of the information it’s looking for and how it’s going about it?
“We know that short-form video is staying. Attention spans are really low but people will stay with their content for a minute if it’s engaging enough,” Diaz says. “As long as the content is valuable in short-form video, people are likely to want more. It’s important that people are not just selling when they post, that they’re sharing some valuable tips that create dependability in the viewer’s desire to want more.
“Social media has become so much more intimate because of video. It’s why actors and actresses are so popular, because they are in your house. You’re watching a film, you feel like you know that character, whereas with musicians, maybe there’s a little bit more distance because it’s radio, it’s listening, it’s more passive.”
Focus on being a good story teller and sharing your business’s story consistently anywhere online. Identify today’s popular trends and put your own spin on them. And whatever content you develop, design it so the visitor or viewer is at the heart of it, Diaz advises.
“This person has to be the hero of that story. Don Miller from StoryBrand says, ‘Let them be Luke Skywalker and I’ll be Yoda.’ You have to be the guide that brings them to your service, and the way you do that is by creating desire for the service that you offer. And the way you create desire is relief, right? Or freedom or some transformational event that they believe your service can create.
“If you tell a good story, you create the believability of that. Now you have to deliver on it as an experience, right, but at least the story captivates them enough. If you do that across all channels where you’re online, then you’ll be a better marketer.”
Miss Part 1? You can read it HERE.
Have a question or comment? E-mail our editor Bruce Beggs at [email protected].