Did you know that about 90 percent of dropshipping businesses fail within the first month due to the owners’ frustration that they are not making enough money? This doesn’t have to be the case for you. With the right social media strategy, you could be part of the 10% that keeps smiling all the way to the bank.
This article focuses on some of the most actionable social media strategies to help you scale your dropshipping business fast. However, it’s essential to start by saying that growing a dropshipping business requires patience, tenacity, hard work, and creativity.
Some Quick Statistics
Here are some numbers to show you the power of social media as a tool for marketing your dropshipping business:
- In 2020, 3.6 billion people worldwide had social media accounts, and the number is projected to increase to 4.4 billion by 2025.
- 70% of Americans use social media.
- YouTube and Facebook are the leading social media platforms, with 81% and 69% of Americans, respectively, indicating that they use these sites.
- About 54 percent of people worldwide access their content from mobile devices, 44 percent on desktops, and 2 percent on tablets.
- On average, people spend 2 hours and 25 minutes on social media every day.
- 61% of people will check their social media accounts within five minutes after waking up.
- 54% of social media users use social media platforms to research products.
- 71% of social media users are more likely to buy a product based on social media referrals.
What Is a Social Media Strategy?
Hootsuite.com, a social media management platform, defines a social media strategy as “a summary of everything you plan to do and hope to achieve on social media.” The site adds, “It guides your actions and lets you know whether you’re succeeding or failing.”
Even though in this article we are not necessarily focusing on how to craft a complete social media strategy for your dropshipping business, we’re looking at specific components of the social media marketing strategies that must guide your general plan.
1. Read Inspiring Stories
Because the dropshipping industry can be challenging to penetrate, it’s easy to believe that the challenges you meet initially are unsurmountable. However, take the time to read stories of some successful entrepreneurs who have used social media to support the growth of their businesses. You will find inspiration and ideas.
If big companies’ stories regarding how they have successfully used social media to attract customers sound far-fetched, maybe you should read the story of an entrepreneur that earned close to half a million dollars using Snapchat and Instagram to advertise her products.
2. Set Goals
Without clarifying what you need social media to do for your dropshipping business, you’ll not get many benefits from it. Therefore, it’s essential to start by defining your goals. This will make it possible to measure whether your marketing efforts on social media are bearing any fruits.
When defining your goals, be clear about what you want to achieve. For instance, do you want to increase engagement, or are you aiming to create a platform where people can ask questions? Answers to these questions will determine the content and activities you’ll post on your social media profiles.
3. Research Your Audience
The success of your social media strategy will depend on knowing your audience, how it behaves and what it likes. This can be a massive challenge if you want to address people from different parts of the world. However, the market is inundated with audience research analytics tools that can give you important insights about your audience.
Identifying your audience will involve asking several important questions, including:
- How can I define my typical customer?
- What is their gender?
- How old are they?
- What is their level of education, and how much do they earn?
- What are they interested in?
You can use different ways to get your audience to willingly share this data with you. However, the easiest method is to use services such as Sprout Social, Socialbakers, and BuzzSumo, which have built-in tools to gather important data from social media profiles and activities.
4. Identify Your Niche
Erin Rafferty started her dropshipping business after realizing that she wasn’t happy in a 9 to 5 job. She tells how she started her business to make enough money to pay her rent. To her surprise, Rafferty made four times her rent in just three weeks.
Rafferty would go on to create a successful business with four stores, each making close to $70,000 per month. Asked about how she has created such a successful business, she said she doesn’t try to be everything to everybody. Instead, she identified a niche and stuck with it.
But what does identifying a niche have to do with social media strategy? “In an effort to appeal to everybody, you target nobody,” says Rafferty. Therefore, if you want to have a clear social media message, you want to speak to people interested in a specific niche.
5. Ensure That Your Posts Resonate with Your Audience
For your content to attract attention in a sea of competing messages, you will need to post content that resonates with your target audience. This will involve determining the problem the audience is attempting to solve and then proposing a real solution.
To produce messages that resonate with your audience, you need to connect at a human level. This will ensure that your content speaks to the target customers’ emotions.
Humor has proved to be a successful strategy in speaking to audiences’ emotions. An article published by the journal Procedia – Social and Behavioral Sciences concludes that humor enhances memory while also helping to build rapport and calm people. This means that your followers are more likely to remember your message if you use humor.
6. Focus on Visual Content
Visual content includes memes, infographics, images, and videos. A research article published by the social networking site for science, ResearchGate.net, concludes that “Visual content has to be a focal point in any marketing strategy, because of its strong relation with the human nature.”
The same Research Gate article adds that “With the help of images, in any form they present themselves, brands can achieve the desired reach and recognition, making marketing investments more efficient.”
The main advantage of visual content is that it is cost-effective. Any decent mobile phone can take great videos and images that you can use for your social media campaigns. There are many video editing programs available for free.
7. Automate Your Social Media Posts
Anyone who has tried to run a social media profile will tell you that staying on top of things is often challenging. This is why you find that specific profiles go for extended periods without any new content and then have a burst of posts over a short period.
To ensure that your dropshipping business’s social media campaigns are not haphazard, you could pick from one of the available social media automation software available. Hootsuite is an example of a popular program you can use.
8. Collaborate with the Right Influencers
If you follow the tips above and create a substantial following on social media platforms, attracting the attention of influencers becomes easier.
But why do you need the help of influencers? The fact that they have a huge following does not happen by accident; it is a culmination of their creativity and effort. Working together with them, you can benefit from the attention they can attract.
While powerful influencers can assist your brand in attracting more customers, it’s essential to work with the ones that match your brand’s values. Taking any influencer that comes along may pair you up with individuals who do not speak your brand’s language, which could hurt your marketing efforts.
Therefore, the best influencer is not always the one that has the highest number of followers. Instead, it is the one that resonates with your audience. This is especially important if you want to follow the branded dropshipping or private label dropshipping route.
9. Choose the Right Networks
A panel of experts from the Forbes Communications Council produced an article with tips on choosing the right social media platform:
- Consider the nature of your business.
- Focus on the primary target market.
- Consider client demographics.
- Go where the customer is.
- Identify the channels already used by your advocates.
- Trying to be on every platform will stretch your resources too thin.
- Once you have selected the platforms, you should build a consistent strategy.
When selecting a platform, you’ll also need to determine the general demographic that uses the specific social media site. For instance, if you want to share entertainment and learning content, you could target YouTube. Go with TikTok if you want to attract younger people. If you aim to reach a worldwide audience, Pinterest may be your platform of choice.
10. Audit Your Strategy
You will never know what’s working and what isn’t unless you stop and take stock. Writing for the famous marketing blog, NeilPatel.com, Jenn Deering Davis presents five steps to measure your social media campaigns. Davis holds a Ph.D. in Organizational Communication and Technology and is the founder of Union Metrics, which focuses on Twitter analytics.
Davis suggests that you should “measure your social activities so that you can learn what’s successful, what isn’t, and how you can improve.” You can quickly evaluate your social media campaigns using social media analytics software.