I am in the process of gathering photos and info to start a shopify store, but this whole social media end is completely new to me. I don't have any facebook, twitter or other accounts to date. Do I start them on my own, or is it easier to start once I open a store? How will these sites help my sales, and will it take a lot of attention keeping them updated as I will be very busy working on making products to sell. I know that I need to find marketing channels to let people know who I am and what I have to sell, but being in my senior years, I never had the use for any of these social media outlets, so I'm a relative newcomer and would welcome any help.
Hi Ken! Maggie, a Shopify Partner here :)
Well done on doing this big step towards selling online, hope you will enjoy it! Social media marketing is a rewarding task, and very beneficial. It can bring traffic to your website, which is vital for online business.
You should launch your website first and then set up social media profiles, as this way you will be able to link to your products from your social media posts. Tell about new added products, new promotions, such as free delivery, limited offers etc. Remember to keep the content in mixed ratio: have a mix of promotional posts [marketing] and curated posts [interesting article you found and thought your followers might find useful, helpful tips, famous quotes etc.]. The key is to come across as a valuable source of information, and not only be trying to sell.
Make sure to outsource social media marketing once it gets overwhelming, in order to move forward and keep growing your company. Good luck!
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What matters most is to think about who is buying from you. In my experience, you'd be better off avoiding "one-size-fits-all advice" such as "you have to use social media". Social networks are a good channel if your customers are there.
I suggest asking yourself "who is going to buy from me?" and then brainstorming ideas of where they hang out. It may be that the best way to get customers to know about your store is via events in the industry. Or online forums such as this one. The best way to learn is to ask them. Your own future customers will give you much better advice than any of us here could.
Content Marketing & Growth at Compass
The #1 Reporting App in Shopify
PS: I just wrote, in partnership with Shopify, a guide on how to use data analytics to grow your store. I think it will be useful to you: http://report.compass.co/ecommerce-analytics-guide/
I think Kit marketing would be useful for you! Get your social media pages up and running prior to your launch. Seeing social media helps customers feel at ease, and builds a trust factor. Having someone run these pages for you can also be useful. Social media can be very time consuming, especially in the beginning. Having these social media pages is also helpful for SEO. Utilize them to their full advantage :)