Brett Lander gives the following points as ways to effectively use social media:
Monetizing social media.
If you are not already incorporating social sharing in your marketing strategy, the time to do so is now. Optimize your website for social sharing with the addition of social network buttons. Place the buttons strategically on product pages to encourage customers to share with their friends the products they like and purchases they make. Ecommerce is no different from brick-and-mortar commerce in thatbuilding trust is essential. Social media sharing activities provide clear evidence that your products are worthwhile.
It is also important to take the step of including customer reviews. Many retailers are hesitant to do this because they do not want to broadcast bad reviews. The reality is that while you may receive an occasional bad review, failure to be transparent by including customer reviews on product pages could also drive away business. Marketing Land reports that 90 percent of respondents state that positive online reviews influence their purchasing decisions.
Choosing social media networks.
Is it better to have a presence on every social media network or only a select few? While some brands try a broad-spectrum approach, most brands have limited amounts of time for properly investing in social media. As a result, it is far better to manage a small number of social media networks and do them well. The key is to choose social media networks that are relevant to your customer base. For instance, if your customer base is comprised of females between the ages of 25 and 50, then Pinterest should be included in your social media strategy. By comparison, if your products and services are more B2B, then LinkedIn is a more relevant choice. Facebook should be included regardless of your customer base demographics due to the sheer number of users, currently at more than one billion, according to Venture Beat.
Combining social media with other marketing strategies.
There is often a common tendency to view social media as separate from other types of marketing activities. For the best outcomes, social media should be integrated with other forms of marketing, including email. For instance, you might encourage your followers on social media to also subscribe to your email list for maximum exposure. As social media continues to become a vital element of everyday life, it will become more important to leverage it order to succeed with ecommerce.