guestXM – by Black Box Intelligence

How to Convert Social Media Followers into Customers

Discover how to test different strategies, define what works for your business, and then optimize your process as you go.

Transforming Social Media Followers into Customers

Are you happy about your amount of followers on social media, but in doubt if they are visiting your business? If you’re looking to turn your “likes” into paying customers, you’re not alone! In this article, we’ll go over 3 ways to drive followers to your physical location.

You might have a lot of followers on social media, but are they coming into your business? Turning your “likes” into paying customers is all about staying “top of mind.” That means being seen regularly, and in this way building recognition and ultimately trust. So, how do you stay top-of-mind?

Your social media pages are the best place to start! Your Facebook, Instagram Google My Business pages, etc. are your “business card.” That’s how potential customers are finding you! We’ve highlighted some of the best strategies to bring your followers from behind their laptops, into your restaurant.

How do I convert followers on social media into paying customers?

Tip 1 – Keep your business details updated!

Never overestimate what your followers know about your business. Check all your social touchpoints – FB, Google, TripAdvisor, Yelp, Instagram, etc., and make sure your business name, address, email, phone, and opening hours (whichever are applicable) are all updated. Your social media and review channels should answer all the basic questions your potential customers could have.

✔️ Start by adding all Google My Business Details. Learn how to set up and optimize your Google Business Profile.

If you’re using AreTheyHappy to monitor all your reviews and messages, you’re able to publish your Google My Business details for every location from the Locations & Groups tab. You can make changes to your details at any time and push them to all your locations at once!

✔️ Regularly remind your followers of any detail important to your business. Don’t be scared to share your posts, simply by adding your location to the caption on Facebook or by adding a location tag to your Instagram post.

Tip 2 – Use Facebook Ads to convert followers into paying customers

If you find you’re not getting enough organic traction, you could consider paying for Facebook ads to get more customers. A few interesting options for the hospitality industry are:

1. Apply Geo-Targeting to your current ad strategy to target customers in the nearby area. A small budget goes a long way, as long as you target the right people.

2. Use a “Carousel Ad” to direct your potential customers to the nearest location, also known as a “Store Locator”

3. Retarget your existing customers by uploading a custom audience on Facebook, and choose your target market wisely. Next up, fine-tune your ad and narrow your targeting for an even better audience!

A great Facebook ad set can be built up of:

  • your current customers,
  • people who look like your current customers (lookalike audience)
  • your Facebook Page Likers,
  • page and website visitors, and
  • people who recently checked in to your page.

*Pro Tip: Don’t boost every single organic post. Always remember that Facebook uses an algorithm: your boosts will be interpreted as “willingness to pay” for organic reach, which will certainly counteract your organic post reach. Instead, save your budget for bigger ads (like the examples above) for better results.

Tip 3 – Engage with your followers, and reward them

To build recognition, and ultimately trust, you should engage with your customers. Show them some love by replying to their messages, and thanking them for sharing their experiences via reviews. It’s a basic part of online reputation management. As you gain more confidence, show your personality, and feel free to joke with them and have fun!

If you find yourself juggling with too many social media and review channels, and run the risk of missing important messages, you could start using a tool. AreTheyHappy created an easy-to-use inbox to help you centralize all your messages in one place, and get notified for every negative review or important message.

Next, why not reward your customers now and then to make them feel appreciated? Imagine the reach if they share that strong experience with their friends and followers. Start by rewarding one follower per week, to substantially grow your reach and credibility over time.

For example: you could pick one reviewer (or active page liker) per week, and surprise him or her with a beautiful thank you message, “picture of the week” or even a coupon. They’ll most likely share your effort with their friends and network (don’t forget to mention them in your caption)! Imagine the reach!

*i.e.: 52 X 150 = 7.800 extra reach per year

(1 post per week X estimated average amount of friends per person)

Converting followers on social media into actual customers

Turning followers into paying customers is no science, but it pays off! It’s about testing different strategies, defining what works for your business, and then optimizing them as you go. Start by giving your customers all the details they need, reminding them of your business regularly, and rewarding them for their interactions.

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