Social media has become an even-more-important engagement tool for businesses during the pandemic. Recent surveys have found that about half of U.S. adults are using social media more now than they were pre-pandemic. Moreover, with many businesses’ normal operations and customer interactions disrupted, social media is an easy way to stay in touch.
We asked business owners how they’re using social media to engage with customers and prospects right now; here’s how they responded:
Producing a video series
As a wedding planner, I had been mostly using Instagram and Facebook to post the latest, greatest event. But in the age of COVID, I’ve had to rethink my social strategy. So, I created the weekly Behind the Veil video series. Originally, it was just a group of event planners on a Zoom call answering questions for couples that we pushed out onto Facebook Live and LinkedIn. Before long, I realized we needed to expand what we were talking about, diversify the guests coming on the show and enhance the quality of the production. Because of the efforts over the last five months, I’m reaching audiences that I could have never dreamed of reaching before. Each time I have a guest on, not only do we have our usual viewers, I also have the chance to be in front of their online fans, too.
—Keith Willard, president, Keith Willard Events, Fort Lauderdale, Florida
Polling on Instagram
I have recently been using Instagram polls to engage my audience and more subtly promote my online courses. Case in point: After one poll, more than 90% of respondents asked me to send them the link to a particular course. This put them in my funnel. I sent them the course link in their Instagram direct messages, and this, in turn, told Instagram that they like my content, and the algorithms going forward will favor my content in their feeds.
—Janice Wald, founder, Mostly Blogging, Newhall, California
Boosting Facebook posts
Prior to the pandemic, we preferred to network via trade shows. We have to network digitally now, and social media is a way to bring people to us. We’ve been sponsoring ads (mainly on Facebook) to draw in business owners who aren’t getting the visibility they want for their product. We target aggressively, usually relying on Facebook Lookalike Audiences and a lot of tweaking of interests and demographics. We use Boosted Posts instead of standard Facebook Ads, so that we can integrate additional social media strategy into it.
—Rex Freiberger, CEO, Gadget Review, Los Angeles
Creating short TikTok videos
I have increased my followers on TikTok from 300 to 9,700 during the pandemic by making short-form videos using my mobile phone. For example, I’ve been creating a lot of educational content about trademarks. Many people are on their phone all day long right now, so they are consuming more content.
—Michelle Murphy, owner, Wilson Murphy Law, Tampa
Being a cleaning essentials company, we sell some of the most needed products right now, such as hand sanitizer, surface spray, surface wipes and Castile soap. So instead of just always promoting products, we also like to educate our social media followers on how to use our products to stay healthy. For instance, we’ll talk about the importance of washing your hands for at least 20 seconds. We may post a giveaway to get more email subscribers, and then every Sunday, I write a helpful informational post to our subscribers talking about different relevant ways to stay happy, healthy and clean.
—Paris Sabo, COO, Dr. Brite, Beverly Hills, California
Featuring customers with products
We use Instagram to showcase our brand and product—silk eyelashes. In our Instagram Stories, we like to share the products that our customers bought and tagged us on. It makes our clients feel closer to us and shows them that we’re just as excited for them to try on our lashes.
—Jason Wong, founder and CEO, Doe Lashes, Irvine, California
How is your business using social media to engage customers and prospects during the pandemic? Share your insights in the comments section below.
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