5 Tips for Internally Establishing a Social Commerce Strategy

Social Commerce, the use of social technologies in the context of retail, is in its immediate infancy. But as advances continue to be made to bridge the gap between social interaction and consumer buying habits, it will soon become the norm.

How it’s Done

In February 2011, Phil Buehler, contributing author to Sell or Else, moderated a panel entitled Social Selling: Using the Power of Friends to Boost the Bottom Line. A condensed version of his findings, is as follows: Set the right expectations with management: There needs to be reasonable metrics and investments outlined at the start, or else there’s the risk early learning attempts could be labelled as failures Invest an equal amount of resources into a Facebook Store: Online stores should be treated with the same considerations as offline ones. A similar investment into merchandising, marketing, sales, and promotions are required for a Facebook store to work. The ‘build and they will come’ mentality just doesn’t fly. Content is king, even in a social commerce setting: You can’t push a selling message from your Facebook Page. You need to create interesting content to engage your customers. Similarly, relevancy is important. QR codes on subway ads, for example, don’t work because there’s no cell signal on the subway. Maintain a brand voice across all departments: Social media is crossing over all disciplines of an organization, and there’s a risk of not having a distinct brand voice. Nowadays, it’s not unusual for a company’s public relations department to run a Twitter campaign, while their advertising department maintains the website, Facebook Page, and customer service e-mail. In order to keep consistency, a realignment of responsibilities is needed.

Bottom Line for Local Business

If you want to be successful in social commerce, you need to go all in. Either put in the time or hire an agency to do it. Having an intern set up a Facebook Page, and  marking a few ‘check’ boxes doesn’t work. There needs to be constant engagement with the target audience to get them talking about your brand to the rest of their social network, which is the most fundamental goal of social media. Internally everyone needs to accept social media. They also need to have reasonable expectations. You can get 1000 fans in a day by offering a deep discount, but that’s not sustainable. Building a presence and authority takes time, but when done right will create a lasting image for the company as a trusted resource. Check out Wishpond’s new How It Works Video: https://www.wishpond.com/merchants/landing

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About the Author:

Wishpond is a simple yet powerful platform for social commerce. Our applications help thousands of businesses around the world exploit the power of the social web to connect with those interested in their products and services.

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