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How to leverage social media for retail success

At our recent Spring Trade Event, we invited CMJ approved supplier, digital specialist Hummingbird, to speak at as part of our seminar programme.

We have been working with Hummingbird since November 2023 as part of our digital development initiative, ensuring that we can arm our members with all the tools they need to be a success online. We summarise their presentation here, with the key takeaways for any independent jewellery retailer.

On average, it takes eight touchpoints to secure a sale online โ€“ social media offers an additional avenue to engage with customers on their buying journey.

Going digital also allows your business to accurately track consumer behaviour and to tailor your marketing efforts towards them.

Having a good social media presence not only acts as an additional direct sales tool (as todayโ€™s consumers want to buy directly from the platform), it also increases confidence in your brand and gives you authenticity as a retailer. Three out of four consumers consult social media before buying, according to Digital Marketing magazine.

Social media also enables real-time communication between businesses and consumers via tools such as direct messages and interactive Q&A sessions. This further encourages trust and confidence in consumer purchasing decisions and fosters a smoother decision-making process for potential buyers.

How do I do social media well?

Often the difficulty for independent retail jewellers is having the time and knowledge to dedicate to social media planning. This is where CMJ suppliers such as Hummingbird can help, taking the hassle out of it and using expert knowledge to post engaging content that is relevant to your target audience.

Hummingbird recommends some key strategies for social media success.

  1. Prioritise understanding your target demographic, including their social media habits and preferences.
  2. Recognise that different social media platforms attract distinct demographics and user behaviours. For example, platforms like Instagram and Pinterest are ideal for visually appealing products such as jewellery. Facebook and Instagram are the most frequently used channels for the retail industry and ideally retailers should be posting on these almost every day.
  3. Conduct thorough research to understand your target demographicโ€™s social media habits, including which platforms they frequent, the type of content they engage with, and the times of day they are most active.

Finally, have a range of content pillar ideas to help plan content that is engaging and offers variety of types of posts. Consider featuring some of the following in your social media planning:

  • Interactive live sessions
  • Exclusive discounts
  • Product showcases
  • Behind the scenes
  • Interactive stories
  • Monthly competition
  • Brand storytelling campaigns
  • Customer stories (user-generated content is hugely powerful)
  • Educational content
  • Social challenges
  • Personalised engagement initiatives
  • Influencer or brand collaborations

To increase engagement with your posts, and therefore ensure your posts are seen by the maximum possible number of users, Hummingbird suggests using the following techniques:

  • Create interactive posts, such as polls, quizzes and Q&As
  • User-generated content
  • Host live sessions
  • Organise contests of giveaways that require engagement
  • Utilise story features to share polls, quizzes and interactive stickers
  • Engage with comments and messages
  • Partner with influencers, other brands, or industry experts for collaborations
  • Develop content that is shareable and likely to resonate with your audience
  • Maintain a consistent posting schedule

Ultimately, social media can no longer be an after thought or a nice-to-have for todayโ€™s independent retailers. Consumers expect retailers to have an active social media profile with content that resonates with their desires.

Check out Hummingbird’s website for more information about how they could help your business maximise its social media potential.

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