How To: Create A Digital Community
Having an online component to your business is no longer optional.
You may have noticed the difference between businesses that do and those that don't during this unprecedented time. But in case you need more insight, let's paint a picture with Business A and Business B.
Both businesses are in the hospitality industry. Usually customers would come in to purchase a few drinks and leave. Then Covid-19 happens. Business A and Business B have to shut down in order to protect their employees and customers.
Business A does not have any social media, their website has not been updated in a while, and they have no customer communication channel besides their telephone.
Business B invested in website development and quarterly maintenance, they have a social media intern who regularly makes content, and they have a e-newsletter for their customers.
Therefore, Business B was able to effectively:
Inform their customers about a curbside pickup solution
Host virtually live mixology lessons with custom kits on their Facebook page
Allow customers to place orders via their website
Digital marketing and content creation can be daunting but they are NECESSARY for the success of your business in these modern times.
Here are some quick tips for building your digital presence:
Be Intentional - You don’t need to be everywhere, you just need to be where your customers are. Instagram is a great place to start, because almost every age group is represented. Additionally, Facebook allows business information, and can be integrated with Shopify for only $9/month. LinkedIn is a great place to showcase your value and expertise through owned media (i.e. blog posts or podcast). Identify where your target audience engages the most and communicate with them.
Be Authentic - When it comes to content creation, no one is expecting you to be perfect (especially if you don’t create content, regularly). Just tell your story, provide value, and engage with your community! Show them the behind-the-scenes look at how you run your business, be honest with them about how you’re dealing with the pandemic. This transparency will build up trust between your business and your audience.
Be Consistent - Don’t give up after everything goes “back to normal”. Continue showing up digitally because you’ll continue to strengthen the relationship between your business and your customers.
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