Tips for Suppliers to Take the Social Media Plunge

by Talk Business & Politics ([email protected]) 146 views 

Editor’s Note: Marie Clapper is executive producer for “Focus on Suppliers.”

Although the social media waters may scare you, you can no longer sit on a deck chair and watch the waves. Brandie Ash, producer of “Focus on Suppliers,” and I spend a fair amount of time working on our social media, and we believe that regardless of the product, suppliers need to consider engaging people in this no-cost, easy way to draw them in.

If you don’t already have a company page on Facebook, start one immediately. Even if you provide just the basics, you’ll have your feet wet. (I couldn’t resist.) Then look over our tips below. Brandie and I pooled our ideas. (Sorry.)

• Learn who your audience is. Once your company page has been up and running on Facebook for a few weeks, learn about your visitors. At the top of your company page, click on Insights. Here you’ll find plenty of data — how many page views and impressions you’re getting, peak visiting hours, percentage of men and women on your page, ages of your visitors, etc.

• Once you know who your audience is, go where they are. Research. Do they use Twitter? LinkedIn? People who are 20 years old and younger, for example, are less likely than other age groups to use Facebook because they have moved on to other options, such as Snapchat and Instagram.

• Begin by using just one platform, and use it regularly. Then, once you’re comfortable with that platform, add another. That way, you will be able to master each platform and not feel overwhelmed.

• Find tools to make your work easier. You can schedule your posts yourself, of course, but there are social media tools that automatically schedule them. To get you started, both HootSuite and CoSchedule have free options.

• Engage your visitors. Poll them or request their comments or ask them to vote on a new product you’re considering. Involvement such as this increases the likelihood of their returning.

• Vary your messages on different platforms. Don’t use the same exact message in two places. Make Facebook different from LinkedIn different from Twitter. Each should be unique in words and in tone.

• Cross-promote. Here at 8th & Walton we cross-promote our education and our media through the social media of each. Suppliers with multiple products or products in more than one category can do the same. If you’re a guest on “Focus on Suppliers” or are quoted in the Northwest Arkansas Business Journal, post that story on social media; make it do double duty for you.

• Have a consistent voice. Either have one person respond to all social media or have one person handling Facebook, another person posting on LinkedIn, another on Twitter, and so on.
And do jump in. The social media waters are just fine. 


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Full episodes and extended interviews can be
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