Social media offers a wealth of opportunities for main street store owners. By engaging with existing customers and reaching out to new ones, a small business can significantly enhance and promote its brand and ultimately improve its bottom line by utilizing and exploiting the unique opportunities social media provides.
The exhilarating world of social media is constantly evolving and the savviest of business owners keep up with these fluctuating social media trends. Small Business Trends takes a look at 10 hot trends on social media right now for main street store owners.
Hot Trends on Social Media for Main Street
Caroline Barker, Content Marketing Manager at Main Street Hub, which helps thousands of local businesses manage their social media marketing and maintain their online reputations, provided Small Business Trends with some current hot social media trends for main street store owners.
One hot social media trend for main street store owners Barker highlights is user-generated content. The idea is simple. If customers are posting about your small business on their personal channels — share it! Just make sure to tag or credit them, and say thank you. These posts are great opportunities to show what’s happening in your business in real time and encourage new customers to give your business a try.
Data shows social videos generate 1,200 percent more shares than text and images. Since Facebook Live debuted in 2015, the shrewdest of business owners have been capitalizing on sharing live-streaming videos on Facebook. By connecting your customers with your business via video, Facebook Live helps to increase the reach of your main street store.
Augmented reality is gathering momentum on social media channels. By sharing actual experiences rather than just information, augmented reality is creating new opportunities for brands to reach out and connect with their customers.
According to Main Street Hub, audiences appreciate relevance and authenticity, so post about what’s happening in your business right now. You can tee up a Facebook Live feed or utilize trendy disappearing content like Instagram stories — but if you have a small team or a small budget, simply posting a photo of an employee, an event or something happening in the moment will get your audience engaged.
A type of artificial intelligence which can have conversations, chatbots are proving invaluable in helping the likes of main street store owners and other businesses communicate with customers and improve customer service by responding quickly to queries, questions and comments.
An incredible four billion users worldwide use messaging apps to communicate. With such a huge chunk of the global population utilizing this convenient way to communicate, messaging apps currently offer a tremendous opportunity for brands to exploit this presence. Perceptive business owners are using messaging apps to communicate one-on-one and develop relationships with customers.
During 2017, it is estimated that a staggering 70.7 percent of brands will use Instagram. Instagram is definitely a social media forum small businesses cannot afford to ignore.
Main Street Hub says the coolest things to use on Instagram right now are their slideshow or carousel features, where you can upload multiple photos into one post, and Boomerang, where you can create a “mini video that plays forwards and backwards,” according to Instagram’s definition. Trying out new features on social platforms will impress your audience and vary your content.
Social Media eCommerce
The likes of Twitter, Facebook, Pinterest and Instagram now offer ways for users to buy products directly from their apps. With a growing number of consumers following brands on social media to search for products for sale, the shrewdest of main street store owners are leveraging these shopping habits within their social media strategies.
Create a Custom Snapchat Filter
Official statistics show that 158 million people are using Snapchat every day. This prolific use of Snapchat means it is a social media platform main street store owners should be utilizing to the maximum.
According to Barker, creating a custom Snapchat filter for the next event your business is throwing is the quickest, most economical way to capture a new audience on the platform. The website has a foolproof how-to list. You can upload your own image or create one right on Snapchat, choose the date and time, and voila! You have a filter set up. Just make sure to let your customers know that if they’re using Snapchat they should scroll through to find your filter.
Advertising revenue generated from mobile formats is increasing. On Facebook, for example, in 2016, 80 percent of the social media network’s $7 billion of ad revenue came from mobile ads. Savvy main street store owners and other small businesses are paying for mobile ads. The more creative and visually enticing the ads are, the better, as it will help get the mobile ad noticed.
Fargo Photo via Shutterstock
Trends can really come and go. It is always important to keep up with the times.
Social media is really changing really fast. It may be hard to keep up but we must do it or we’ll get left behind.
Thanks for sharing. We really need to see and feel what’s going on. We also need to immerse ourselves in the social media culture.