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These 4 social media platforms add value to your customer journey during COVID-19

Since social distancing still is the norm these days, those looking to connect with others during the COVID-19 pandemic are turning to their favorite social media platforms. Find out how your business can leverage this trend to drive sales and brand awareness.

A recent study of 25,000 consumers across 30 markets showed 61% more social media engagement since the start of the corona crisis. Messaging across Facebook, Instagram and WhatsApp increased by 50% in the most heavily impacted countries. To put it lightly, there are a lot of opportunities on social media for your business right now.

Almost every physical business has to shift its activities to an online alternative. Small shops suddenly have to invest in online shopping opportunities. Simultaneously, business familiar with ecommerce struggle with bringing the right message at the right time in the customer journey.

In both cases, social media can help.

We believe these four social media channels will attribute to your customer journey the most:

TikTok: the Corona-trend!

  • Phase in the customer journey Awareness
  • What it is good for Brand awareness
  • Biggest advantage Easy for people to take action, start a trend and go viral

TikTok app opening screen

Why this platform?

TikTok is an app that allows users to create, promote, and react to short-form music videos. What started as a popular Asian app majorly used by Gen Z and Millennials, is now one of the fastest growing social media platforms in the world. So far, it is the most downloaded app of 2020.

Forced into isolation, people all over the world suddenly need a way to entertain themselves and connect with others. Many people are latching on to TikTok, that quaint music video app they saw their friend or child using. Things only snowballed from there.

What should I do?

So, how does TikTok fit into your business’ customer journey?

Let us start with a small disclaimer: TikTok is not suitable for every business. It is important to keep the demographics of this platform in mind. Statistics show that 85% of the users are under 34 years old. TikTok can be leveraged to generate exposure and awareness for your products if you’re targeting a younger demographic.

This can be done by creating a campaign that inspires people to get creative, get active and get them to do something different. The most common way to so is by organizing a hashtag challenge like: #PepsiCanBalance or Colgate’s #MakeMomSmile.

There are some other ways to gain awareness and participation on TikTok:

  • Entertaining content
  • In-feed advertising
  • Sponsored hashtag challenges
  • Influencers
  • Branded lenses and effects
  • Brand takeovers

tiktok app icon

A frequently asked question at the moment is whether it is a good idea to use TikTok to promote your business or not. The answer is definitely yes if you’re targeting a younger demographic. From influencers to hashtag challenges, TikTok offers unique ad formats you can utilize to promote your business and connect with your audience.

When it comes to paid advertising within Europe, bidding ads is currently only possible in four European countries: United Kingdom, Spain, Italia and France.

So, if you want people to take a social action, this is your channel!

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Pinterest: the new window shopping!

  • Phase in the customer journey Awareness, consideration
  • What it is good for Inspiration
  • Biggest advantage It digitally replaces showrooms

Pinterest pins on moodboard

Why this platform?

Before COVID-19, Pinterest was mainly an inspirational platform where people heart images and add them to their own inspirational moodboards. With these moodboards in mind, they would visit local physical stores or showrooms to find products that fit their taste, see a specific product from up close, or get some expert advice.

Because of the corona crisis, going to physical stores or showrooms is not that simple anymore, so the stakes of Pinterest advertising are higher than ever!

What should I do?

Hearting Pinterest images in your couch is the new window shopping. If you now want to be present in a potential customer’s inspirational phase, you should have a business page full of inspirational content and moodboards on Pinterest. Combining this with promoted pins is the ticket!

Pinterest profile Forever 21

So, if you want inspire people or familiarize them with your products, this is your channel!
 

Facebook and Instagram

  • Phase in the customer journey Brand awareness, consideration, purchase
  • What it is good for Wide reach
  • Biggest advantage Sell products without a webshop or physical store

Why these platforms?

Since the start of the COVID-19 pandemic, a lot of businesses have been selling products via their Facebook and Instagram accounts. Think of your local florist, who posted a few of her bouquets on her Facebook page and Instagram Stories, announcing that orders are still possible and will be brought to your doorstep.

In this case, she transported her physical store to the Facebook news feed and Instagram Stories. Thanks to these platforms, she can sell her creations even without a physical store or online web shop.

What should I do?

Nowadays, Instagram is very supportive towards local business using their platform. They even introduced a new sticker for Stories that is designed for users to help support them during the current pandemic.

A recent update allows users to shout out businesses and places in their area. Instagram automatically creates a curated Stories feed of everyone you are following who has used the feature. Its aim is to help struggling businesses during the current global situation.Support for local business on Instagram

Want to take the shopping experience on these platforms to the next level? Add a catalog with your products to Facebook and make use of Instagram Shopping!

Instagram shopping features

You can also test Facebook’s newest feature: Facebook Shop, which makes shopping possible on every Facebook app (Facebook, Instagram, Messenger, WhatsApp) and even offers its own checkout feature. Soon, this will overrule Instagram shopping and have its own section in the Instagram app later this year.

Facebook Shopping screenshots

A quick tip: if you are not sure you will reach enough potential customers through Facebook or Instagram, try launching a giveaway. They often help beginning accounts to gain followers fast.

So, if you want people to get to know you or buy your products, these are your channels!

A conclusion: two approaches to social media

Broadly, there are two opposing approaches for businesses to handle social media right now. They can use social media for commercial purposes or for communal purposes. In other words, companies use social media to inspire, brand, sell or market their business, versus using social media to connect and co-create with customers and to provide a platform where customers can bond during COVID-19.

 

Inspired? We can help you get started with your social media strategy

It's one thing to take your business to a social media platform, it's another to extract as much value as possible out of these channels. Our social media experts can help you.

Your strategy starts here

 

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