Don't overthink it, it's not that hard. Like Benjamin says it's important to be social, to interact with your community. Now if you have some budget allocated for that you can also advertise your profile to build your following faster.
You can also hire a consultant that will take care of growing your social media account, it will probably cost you the same as the high school kid you want to take in. Elise Michel Consultants take $199 to manage the growth of all your account, and will publish some news about your profile online too, and you save all your time. Magic, right ?
Now if you insist on doing it alone, you will need to interact with potential audience members on a daily basis, so you will need to follow some, comment on some, like some's pictures etc. You will also need to post to keep your community aware of your existance. That might take a lot of time, which i'm sure will add up to a lot more than $199 per month, but it's your call.
If you want to find customers on social media, you shouldn't focus on the followers number but on getting the customers. Then you will still have to interact with your audience, but if you spend any budget on advertising, I recommend NOT to promote your account, but the products. It really depends if you're trying to promote a person (model, entrepreneur, musician...) or to sell products.
I hope it helps, don't overthink it or get overwhelmed. Just hire someone from Elise Michel who has done it over and over again and focus on school and leading your business.
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I'll start by saying Influencer marketing is quite dead, I would be very careful going there.
"What has worked for you?"
It really depends on what you're selling, but I'll assume you're promoting physical products. There are two things you need : Advertising and Credibility.
Advertising is obvious, you want people to see your products.The credibility of the advertising campaign is not just who is delivering the message, but encompass why the consumer will and should believe the advertisement. So in a few words, you will need to have some articles published about your company and your product, or your advertising campaign is not very believeable.
For your advertisements, you need to sell the customer on 3 things :
Your product : the best thing since sliced bread
Your company : honest, ethical, offering xxdays money back guarantee, loves their customers blablabla
You are in demand : people don't buy what they need, they don't buy what they want, they buy what other people want
So your advertising mix should look something like that :
First ads batch : promoting your product in a SIMPLE and ELEGANT way. Stop trying to trick people with flashy social-mediay looking ads, just make it clear what your product do and who it is for. You should have the following ads in your set :
Simple product explanation ad : you'd be shocked how many customers jump into the cool hyped words and try to flash their products, but forget to tell the client what the product is for. It's normal as we're drowning in our own business, it's hard to see those things but that's why people hire consultants.
Product presentation ad : just a clear statement that your product is out and available in your store for sale
Direct benefit ad : tell your customers what ONE of your product's benefit is (you can make multiple ads if the product has multiple benefits, but please focus on one benefit per ad).
Reason to buy : simple advertisement presenting your product in a headline and giving a reason to buy it NOW.
Second ad batch : about your company. People will not buy if they don't trust you or your company. We need a few ads to present your online store. It might seem boring but it is necessary. You'll have to create a few ads presenting who you are, what your vision is, where you deliver, if shipping if free make an ad about it, etc.. You are making one sentense ads presenting your company and giving general information about you.
Third ad batch : showing you are in demand. You need to show people your product is selling, and that it is in high demand. Noone cares about what you have to sell, they care about what other people are buying. It is VERY important to show you are selling, and if you're not, to fake it. You need to show boxes of your products being sent out (A picture or video, who cares) with a caption (for example : "first order from mexico!" ). Mention you're stock is half gone, mention new customers in new places, try to make it fun : "99 orders today for Elise Michel's Speaker, who will be the 100th ?" . etc
When you have all this ready to go, then you pick your audience. It's easy to calculate what audience size you need based on your budget or how many customers you'll willing to get. I don't know the industry you're in, but let's take one of my clients as an example. He is into baby fashion retailing, and he wants to get 200 new customers this month.
Based on his industry conversion rate, we'll need to have 8,511 people interested in his products to generate 200 retail customers. Based on a conservative rate-of-interest (how many people who see the ads actually respond by taking action), he will need to reach 77,300 people to reach this objective.
Then we all know the rule of seven, this means a person needs to see an advertisement 7 to 20 times before taking action. Now i'm sure one of your problems is that your impressions and reach are almost the same amount, right ? Check in you ad manager. This would mean most people see your ad ONCE. Now try to remember the ad you saw for the first time today on the billboard in the metro station : You don't. Your campaign CANNOT be successful if people don't see your ads multiple times. You MUST optimize on facebook/instagram ads to have 7 to 20 impressions per reach in order to see massive positive results.
Now back to my client's example : he wants 200 new customers, he nees to generate 8,511 interested people, and for that he needs an audience size of 77,300 people. Then based on the rule of 7, he needs 541,000 impressions AT LEAST to generate interest for his clients.
We assume 20% of impressions are lost because ad platforms are not perfect, so the client needs 649,000 impression to reach his goal. This would set him back $1,687 in advertising budget, and the 200 new customers will generate him an average of $46,400. We have a successful campaign.
To Summarize you need :
A full ad mix, some about your product, some about your company, and some showing you're in demand
To calculate the size of your target audience based on your objectives and/or budget
Make sure you show your ads to people more than once, check your facebook ads manager, i'm sure that mistake is there.
Study the results and improve on your campaigns in the following months.
Advertising works for thousands of companies, there is no reason it shouldn't work for you. If you need any help with the setup, calculations, or campaign creation, you can always head to Elise Michel Consultants, and ask for Alexandre. I'm more than happy to help !
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