If you’ve been in a grocery store lately, you can see that today’s shoppers are presented with a great deal of variety at the store level. Increasingly, shoppers want to know where their fresh food comes from, and they want to be able to look at the variety of options presented and trust that the brands they are choosing are the best in the category.
Increasing awareness and establishing your brand as the best can feel like a hefty and expensive task, but we’re here to remind you that it doesn’t have to be! Social media is one of the most powerful (and relatively inexpensive) tools for establishing and fostering brand authority. Keep reading to discover how you can leverage social media to new heights.
Use social media to drive traffic back to your website
A brand with a deep knowledge of their product provides incredible value to shoppers – the more authority a brand has on a topic, the better resource they become. In the digital world of instant gratification, people turn to search engines to fill the void between what they know and what they want to know. And in order to establish yourself as an authority on the web and increase your search ranking, you need to harness the power of your social media networks by driving your audience to your website. Share the content on your website that makes your brand unique – whether it be your sustainability story, your recipes, or your history.
Be sure to include links to your site in your social media content and high quality images that will encourage and entice social media users to follow a link to learn more. Then, use social media advertising dollars to expand your reach and attract new website visitors. By doing so, you’ll show search engines like Google that you have an expertise on a subject, and they’ll reward your increased web traffic with a higher search ranking.
Build a community, because there’s strength in numbers
Today’s consumers live in a digital world in which they are overwhelmed frequently with “fake news.” Shoppers are well aware that not every source of information is trustworthy, and they often look to their peers to provide third-party validation before trusting – and trying – new brands. One indicator of a brand’s authority and trustworthiness lies in its social media communities. A brand that has tens of thousands of Facebook likes and Twitter followers naturally has more brand authority than a brand that has only a few hundred followers – or even worse, no social media presence at all.
In order to establish brand authority, consider advertising on social media and investing in follower ads, targeting only the people that make the most sense for your brand. Just remember to provide your newly attracted followers with relevant, interesting content on a regular basis. After all, a social media profile with 10k+ followers is of no value if the most recent post is from 2016, or if it’s only been “liked” by a handful of people.
Establish a relationship and provide customer service
The number one way to build brand authority is to establish trust with your audience, because people that trust your brand will advocate on its behalf. You can use social media as an extension of your customer service to nurture and foster trust by responding to comments, private messages, and questions regularly. As a best practice, we recommend setting a goal to respond to comments within a 12 hour time period. We find that people who reach out to a brand via social media expect a much faster response than if they had chosen to reach out via email or a contact page on a website.
At the end of the day, the strength of social media stretches far beyond likes, comments, and impressions. Your social media channels are a direct line of communication to shoppers, and an incredible opportunity for establishing your brand as the authority in what you do. Interested in learning more about our approach to social media? Reach out to us for a social media assessment! We’ll take a deep dive into your social channels, and let you know what’s working and where you have room to improve.