Want to learn the secrets of brands that actually make sales using social media? This exclusive free masterclass takes you through the seven things they’re doing.
At JC Social Media, we have represented hundreds of businesses online and trained thousands more. We have seen the patterns of success and we have helped our clients create that amazing success for themselves.
Creating amazing success on social media is no accident. It’s intentional – it’s deliberate – and today we want to tell you exactly what some brands do well that mean they actually make sales on social media.
This masterclass includes:
✅ The seven secrets
✅ Your success action plan
✅ Useful links and further reading
✅ Lifetime access including updates
It’s presented by the founder of JC Social Media, Jodie Cook. The masterclass is on our online course platform, available upon signup with lifetime access, including all future updates.
Get instant access here. We look forward to seeing you in the masterclass!
If you’d rather read the seven secrets, here’s the full video transcript:
Seven secrets of brands that actually make sales using social media
We have represented hundreds of businesses online and trained thousands more. We have seen the patterns of success and we have helped our clients create that amazing success for themselves.
Creating amazing success on social media is no accident. It’s intentional – it’s deliberate – and today I want to tell you exactly what some brands do well that mean they actually make sales on social media:
1. They give massive value
It’s so easy to look at social media in terms of what you can get. You can almost picture this stern board member saying, “but what are we getting from social media?” But it’s completely the wrong way to think about it! Those brands actually making sales online are thinking in terms of what they can give. It sounds counterintuitive and it involves a big shift in your thought process around the purpose of social media, but giving should be the cornerstone of every brand’s social media strategy.
Give value. Give entertainment. Give someone a reason for checking out your stuff. Online, people have so much to look at! They have pings going off all over their screen, flashes of advertising, emails popping up, not to mention the article that they were actually trying to read!
The only way you will actually get people’s attention is if they are seeking out your content. The only way people will do that is if they know it will be good. Think of it as brain training your audience to see your logo, even out of the corner of their eye, and associate your brand with them getting some kind of value. Brands who do this successfully know they can cut through any of the noise that’s out there, because their audience knows to look out for them and because each time they do, they get massive value.
This is how they create superfans! Superfans are those people who will consume your content en masse and buy everything you put out. They feel connected to your brand, they feel like they are ambassadors of it. They will champion you everywhere and they’ll be responsible for other people finding you. Focusing on giving value will help you turn passive fans into superfans.
This is where you make sure you are remarkable, or at least heading towards being remarkable. Take this moment to be completely honest with yourself – is everything you are putting out there reflective of your exceptional brand and the impression you want to give your audience? Just think about it!
Secondly, shift your mindset for social media, from thinking about what you can get to what you can give. Is there an amazing download you can create for your audience, that will really help them out? How can you be talking about the things they want to hear about? How can you make them smile, or feel inspired, or how can you make them really happy with your words and your pictures and your brand’s messages? The answers to these questions will make all the difference between a brand that makes sales using social media and a brand that completely wastes its time trying to sell there.
2. They create exceptional touchpoints
Social media on an individual basis represents an opportunity for every person to keep in touch with everyone they meet, both online and offline, forever. It’s a chance for everyone you’re connected with to feel like they know, like and trust you, even maybe without having ever met you in real life.
Brands that do brilliantly on social media know that everyone their brand comes into contact with is a chance to expand their online network. They’re making the most of all their customer touchpoints as a reason to engage and a reason to continue a conversation.
They’re making the most of products and packaging, to be as shareable as possible. They’ve designed their brand and all their marketing with contribution in mind. They’re planning their venues to be Instagram-worthy. They’re not missing a beat on their website, their email signatures, their webinars, their events, and any other place they meet customers, online or in person. They are ensuring that all of these people can naturally progress to becoming fans of theirs, on the social media platform of their choice.
Now that’s building up in the background of them running their business, they’re taking it one step further. They might have made sub-groups or messenger chat rooms, to introduce the most engaged of their followers to each other, to add even more value. That then strengthens the connection that each person feels with this brand, and their content goes further.
But, and here’s the key, they’re also not relying on social media. They know, that at any point, any social network could change its algorithm significantly and so they are simultaneously building their email list. They know that whilst it’s great having loads of followers, you own your email list.
These brands using social media to make sales know that if their Twitter account suddenly got deleted, or if LinkedIn suddenly closed down, it wouldn’t mark the end of their sales because that network they have built on one platform is also on another platform, or it’s on their email list. They’re building up levels of contingency that will only serve them well going forward.
It’s all about looking to be remarkable. One way of giving massive value and creating an exceptional touchpoint is producing some kind of entry level product or experience, that can give someone a taster of your remarkable brand. It’s the reason why some restaurant chains also have their products in supermarkets. Or the reason why premium apps have free taster versions.
How can you do this too? Look at your website, your email signature, your venue, your products and packaging, your customer touchpoints. Every single place you meet people, as an individual or as a brand. Look at these places to work out how you can take more opportunity to turn people into social media fans and followers. It might be as simple as linking your profiles or adding your username somewhere visible. It might be incentivising someone to hop across or sending things out in the post to create a buzz. Find those opportunities to keep in touch with everyone, forever, and your network will keep on building.
3. They automate the right things
Every brand faces trade-offs when it comes to any form of marketing. They have to consider the resource investment required for a certain output and what the likely return on that investment looks like.
The secret to making this trade-off profitable is automation. Automation completely changes the balance of the trade-off because it supercharges output without increasing resource investment.
Automation means you free up your time and your team’s time so you can do more and achieve more online. Brands doing social media incredibly well know exactly what they should and shouldn’t automate. However, they are using automation very carefully indeed, and they’re automating the right stuff!
Examples of automating the right stuff might be, installing a Facebook pixel on your website that automatically tracks people who visit your site, who then see your ads for the next two weeks until they revisit. It might be setting up so that when someone submits an email address it sends them a download of a freebie, or gives a coupon code, and then automatically follows them up to offer them more value and keep in touch. Perhaps their ads are largely automated, using tools that ramp them up and down depending on cost per click or cost per conversion. These brands doing amazingly well online are using automation tools to their advantage. They’re getting familiar with websites like Zapier and IFTTT and automate.io to explore the options available.
Social media content itself can form part of this automation. Whilst the actual writing of the posts might not be automated, the inspiration is. Brands who run successful social media have inspiration of what to post coming at them from all directions. They don’t leave it to chance. They’re not scrabbling around on a Monday afternoon wondering what they should tweet about! They’re planned in advance and they’re using scheduling tools so their plan seamlessly happens whilst they’re getting on with other things. They’ve likely set up Google Alerts for their industry keywords, they’ve got other people on the case with finding ideas, and they have very specific and relevant news sites bookmarked. They have automated reminders for specific events and reminders of when to do their Instagram engagement and reminders for every aspect of their social media so that success is not left to chance.
If they can do it, you can do it too! Take a piece of paper or open up a fresh spreadsheet and write down every process that you or your team carries out across social media. The ones you’ve written down that require almost no thinking whatsoever can probably be automated in some way. Adding people from one software programme to another, say from Shopify to Mailchimp, can be done using Zapier. Scheduling content can be done using Hootsuite or Buffer. Researching and looking up information can be automated so it appears in your inbox using Google Alerts. There are loads of those examples, so look down your list and work out; does this need to be a person or could it be automated? Go one step further and see if it could be delegated or eliminated, because it’s not super important and there are other better things to do. Think critically about every part of what you’re doing and why you’re doing it, then look to automation as a way to massively increase your efficiency.
4. They make a strategy and stick to it
Brands who are absolutely smashing it on social media know that this doesn’t happen without a strategy. They make the time to make one, because they know it is crucial. They ask questions and they keep asking them until they find the perfect plan.
Why are we doing this? What are we trying to achieve? How will we get there? Which specific niche are we actually looking to speak to? What does success look like? If you asked them, they would have clear answers to these questions and that’s the way they know what they are doing on social media every day, every week, every month and every year.
It really is the only way to make sure you’re not meandering aimlessly around, retweeting every tweet that makes you laugh, or blasting out links to your website and trying to please everybody with your content.
Not only do they create their strategy, they have it available somewhere they can regularly refer back to. They could sum it all up in a few clear sentences and maybe it’s pinned up on a wall! Either way, it’s seen and understood by everyone in their team. But more important than that is they actually stick to it. This part is so much easier said than done. Have you ever heard someone say, “I saw this amazing Instagram account who are doing this… you should do this!” only for them to recommend something that would involve a complete change in approach?
Brands who have their clear plan of action, written down and cemented in their strategy, will not be deterred by random recommendations from others on what they “should” do. They’re listening and learning and adapting when they need to, of course, but they know that their strategy is the one that they have confidence will bring them the social media success they are looking for.
If you haven’t got one, make yourself a social media strategy. It doesn’t need to be a huge dossier of information, it can be as simple as what you’re trying to achieve, how you’re working on achieving it and who you’re trying to reach. It could be written on the back of an envelope if you want, just make sure it’s down there somewhere and make sure you’re not flitting around and bouncing between strategies, because that way is not conducive to the success you’re looking for.
5. They have mastered Facebook ads
Brands making sales from social media have mastered Facebook ads. Let’s be honest, much of social media now is pay to play. If you have a brand that is doing really well organically, it could be taken even further with some well-planned ads budget behind it.
If you’ve ever felt like you’ve wasted money on Facebook ads you are not alone! That’s because it isn’t easy to make sales from Facebook, but it is very possible with the right method. These brands are learning everything they can about how ads are set up, then they’re creating first drafts, testing them out, making tweaks and running them some more. They’re building this process into an ads funnel that takes people on a journey with their brand, that builds trust and familiarity and opens up the pool of people who feel like they know them and like them and would buy from them.
What’s amazing is that this is possible for anyone with access to Facebook! You could start so tiny with this. You could start with a $2 daily budget, then assess your results and put it to five, and ten and so on. There are brands that spend thousands a day on ads because the numbers make sense for them to do so, because they know that putting 1000 in might get 5000 out. They are making sales totally systematically through Facebook and Instagram.
Part of mastering Facebook ads is mastering remarketing. Ever noticed how you go on a website, and then that company almost follows you around the internet? Suddenly they’re appearing everywhere you look and you’re being shown the exact products you were looking at earlier! This is part of a very smart brand using remarketing well, so if you haven’t set this up I recommend you do so.
If your audience is defined, if you’re proud of your product, if your brand is strong, this can translate into a series of ads that run consistently and convert into email subscribers, or page likes, or web traffic, or whatever you want people to do. Facebook’s ads manager is a brilliant tool with an abundance of options for who you can target and the ways they can engage with your brand, so get familiar with how it works and then with that knowledge make a list of all the things you could do on there, that would fit in with your strategy.
If you need ideas, scroll down your own Facebook feed, or Instagram feed, or Instagram stories, and look at the sponsored content. Be critical. Is it having the desired effect, is it compelling you into action? Could you do something similar for your business? The best brands are creating amazing images, videos, copy and calls-to-action and they are ramping up how far they go by putting an ads budget behind them. This ads budget is allowing them to reach millions of people and you can make this happen for your brand, too.
6. They are relevant and synonymous with their industry
The sixth thing that brands who successfully use social media are doing is making sure they come across as experts within their industry. They’ve made a conscious decision to position themselves in this way. They are making sure that what they say is relevant and their brand is synonymous with the industry that they operate in. This has a huge impact on the decision-making process of their customers. If you believe a certain brand is the best; that they are ahead of the curve or at the top of their game, why would you go elsewhere?
When there’s some news in their industry their audience look to them for their opinion, because they value what they have to say on it. Whatever topic it is! Their audience knows what they stand for and what they believe, and the brand reinforces this by being part of the conversation.
It’s very likely, and we know this because we do this for clients too, that they are using Google Alerts, to set up alerts for relevant key terms. Say a lawyer setting one up for their specific area of law, whose inbox is receiving news and articles about those topics. What they are then doing, is using social media accounts to put their spin on that topic. They are commentating and giving their opinion and their predictions on this news. But the key is that this isn’t just any old news. It’s not the latest thing to happen on some random TV show, or jumping on the bandwagon of any trending topic, it’s the news that is relevant to them, that their audience would expect them to know about.
The goal here is that your audience hears about something that’s going on and then wonders “what would they think of that?” and they are seeking out your opinion, because that’s whose opinion they value. There is so much information out there. Everyone can give an opinion and leave a review or be outraged, but it’s mainly irrelevant because it’s biased or its uneducated or it’s just noise. People are looking for relevant, expert commentary on topics they care about. It’s the reason why ex-pro sports people become commentators, because people trust their opinion. You need to replicate this approach for your industry, and absolutely own it.
7. They focus on consistency and experimentation
The final thing that brands doing great on social media have in common, is that they are consistent. They are consistent in how they put their brand across. They use the same colours, the same graphic style, even the same filters and emojis! They are consistent in the voice and the tone that they use and this doesn’t vary even if multiple people are working on their accounts. They have brand and style guidelines written up in great detail to make sure this is always adhered to. This consistency extends to the posting itself. They are consistent in the frequency of the posting. Perhaps they always post once a week, or they always post once a day, or whatever it might be. There aren’t huge peaks and troughs of being super active and then going silent. They decide on this consistent level that they could keep up forever, and then they stick to it.
Within this consistency, they incorporate experimentation. They consistently try out new social media features to entertain and surprise their audience. Not only does that keep things fresh, within their consistent style and their defined strategy, but it can also mean they come across as cutting edge and they might receive boosts from the social media platforms themselves. Remember, the social media platforms want you to try out their new features. They want to get people using them and playing around and if you do that, chances are they’ll reward you by showing your post or your story to more people. On-brand, on-strategy, regular experimentation is in the plans of those brands who do amazingly on social media.
You can replicate this for yourself by firstly deciding on the frequency at which you’re going to post and making this a cadence that you could keep up forever. Secondly, set yourself a regular reminder to check for new features as they are released by the social media platforms, or you can subscribe to a social media news site to hear about them as they are released. This doesn’t mean jumping straight on a completely new platform as soon as its released, especially if it’s not relevant to your brand, but it does mean incorporating those new tricks into your content to mean that your audience take just that little bit longer to stop and pay attention.
That is the seven secrets of people and companies that actually make sales using social media, based on what we’ve learned from working with thousands of brands doing incredibly well. This can be you! There is no reason why, without the right guidance and steps in the right direction, that you can’t supercharge your efforts and get seeing amazing results.