Build your business with Snapchat

snapchat seniors business

Guest post by Senior Advisers Network

Get with the times… Snapchat can do wonders for your business

snapchat seniors business

Get with the times, SnapChat can do wonders for your business

The latest social media trend report by Sensis highlights that 99% of Australians have an Internet-enabled device and as many as 87% are online every day. Social networking is one of the most popular activities for Australians aged 9 and above, with almost half of the country being active on social media on a daily basis. Looking at these stats, it is impossible to ignore the potential reach that social media has for small businesses in Australia. Here we take a look at one of the rising stars in social media – Snapchat!

Millennial Favourite

Wait, what? Snapchat is that thing the kids use, right? To send the pictures that disappear in a few seconds. That’s not a business app. Or is it?

Snapchat may not be the first social media app you consider when you think of business, but Social Media News recently reported that around 2 million Australians are active on Snapchat every month, so it would certainly be beneficial to find a way to put this platform to work for you.

How Snapchat Works

Understanding how it works is the first step.

Snapchat works with the camera app on your phone to send pictures that you take to people you are friends with on the app. When you receive a snap, you can view it for up to 10 seconds before it disappears. If you want, you can take a screenshot of it or view it once again, but after your 10 seconds are up, it’s gone from the app.

You can also put pictures in a snap story, which is visible for 24 hours. The idea is to give a ‘snapshot’ of your day or an event that your friends can look at.

Engage with Your Customers

When trying to engage with potential and existing customers, the first thing to do is to reach out and make friends on Snapchat. You can add friends if you have their snap code, or if they are nearby. You’ll want to add your customers and your followers from other platforms to your Snapchat friends list.

As you can see, Snapchat is a little different from other social media apps, so you might need to think a little bit about how to best use it to promote your business. Snapchat is predominantly used by a millennial audience, but seniors who are in business can benefit too, particularly if they are attempting to promote their services and products to a younger generation of customers.

Here are some ideas:

  • Use it to promote live events. If you’re having a grand opening or a special promotional event at your retail store, you can announce it on Snapchat. Then, when the event happens, you can add live video to your snap story so that even customers who can’t be there can see what’s going on.
  • Have a contest. Snapchat is particularly suited to contests like scavenger hunts. Have a list of items in your store that customers need to snap, and offer a prize for everybody who finds them all.
  • Give a tour. If your business includes manufacturing or production, give a tour of your facility on Snapchat. Customers will be able to see just how the products they buy are made.

These are just a few ways you can promote your business using Snapchat. As you start to use it, you’ll probably come up with more.

For more resources, and reading on strategies for growing your business follow this link to the first of The 7 Big Questions that all small business owners want answered

Talking to Your Neighbours in the Days of Facebook

chatting across the fence

Static websites are so last year

Why You Have to Try Online Marketing No Matter How Small Your Business Is

chatting across the fence Online marketing is where it’s at and I believe no business, micro, small, medium or large can afford to ignore it anymore.

I know that there are still lots of business owners who haven’t come to terms with it fully, but if you still want to be around in a few years you’d better be online and you’d better be engaged.

In 2015 I would be surprised if I still need to spend energy convincing business owners to have a website, but just having a website is not enough anymore.

I met a web developer the other day at a networking event and he sold websites to small businesses. He told me that: “We create websites for small business and a basic site starts at $750 including design and hosting for a year.” On my questioning he explained that the websites his company sold were mostly what is referred to as static sites. Static sites are essentially brochures put online and once they’re up, they’re actually not that easy to change, they’re designed to be static

Brochure

I suppose you’d have to say that having a brochure up on the web is better than not having anything at all, but only just. Unless 100% of your new business comes from direct word of mouth (“My favorite aunt told me to give you a call to supply me this widget or do this thing for me, please deliver it to my door tomorrow, I don’t care about the cost or anything else, because i trust anything my favorite aunt tells me”), every business is dependent on being found online and most importantly starting and maintaining a relationship with current and future customers online. And if you want to be able to do that at all, a static website is not going to cut it.

There are a bunch of reasons for that… Here are just a few:

  • Your customers want to be able to put your business name into their Google maps and get driving directions to your business, directly from their phone
  • Your customers want to look at testimonials from other people who have engaged with your business
  • Your customers want to be able to compare your product or services with those of others, directly online
  • Your customers don’t use the yellow pages anymore
  • Your customers spend more and more time online on social media of various forms, and they want to interact with business in the places they spend time (BTW that’s why advertising on the walls of urinals in pubs can be so effective… talk to your customers where they hang out!)
  • The big search engines and social media organisations will not rate websites that are ‘static’ well at all, meaning you will not be found if all you have is a brochure website
  • Static/ brochure websites start to look dated and sleepy very quickly, you can always tell a brochure website, they’re usually boring.

So what does that mean for you?

It’s hard to be too prescriptive of course, a local carpet cleaning business has different needs than a PR firm in the city, or a restaurant or a manufacturing business that operates nationally or internationally.

The principles

But let me give you some of the principles of online engagement and marketing to think about.

  • Mobile is getting more and more important for everything. More than 50% of searches on Google are done via handheld devices now and that trend is set to continue strongly.
  • Video is getting more and more important.
  • People spend time on Social Media, not necessarily to buy stuff. Just like you don’t spend time in the pub to buy anything else besides drinks and food. Anyone who walks up to you in a pub when you are hanging out with your friends to sell you something is generally not welcome
  • Your customers want to trust you before they will buy from you. Focus on getting them to trust you, and the rest will follow
  • Your customers will look for you where they are, they will not go looking for you elsewhere if they can help it. So if your customer is on Facebook and he wants an electrician and he can find one directly on Facebook recommended by a friend, they won’t even bother going to Google and find you there.

The backfence

Scary stuff right? But you know I’ve heard it said that there’s actually nothing new under the sun. In the old days we used to hang across the fence chatting to the neighbours and getting our recommendations and introductions that way, now we hang over the fence at Facebook and do exactly the same.

The analogy isn’t totally accurate because in the old days, your fence didn’t have any pay per click advertising stuck all over it, but it’s not that far off. It’s all about trust and being where the customers are.

And they’re online, all the time.

So you better be talking to them there… don’t you think?

PS: If it’s all too scary… drop me a line and I’ll connect you to the right people to help you get on top of this stuff… you probably shouldnt try and do it all yourself anyway

 

Old Fashioned Marketing in the Digital Age: Podcast with Scott Forrest

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Marketing in 2015… The More things change, the more… Really?

What has and what hasn’t changed about marketing in the digital age

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The podcast of the Small Business Masterminds Foundation Webinar on Marketing in 2015. I am joined by Scott Forrest from Motive Marketing to help us get to the bottom of what we really need to know to market our businesses effectively in the days of Social media, SEO, Pay Per Click and Cost Per Lead.

Small business Masterminds Foundation webinars are held every second Thursday… for Free… Go to this link to register for the next one now.