With so many buzz words and new applications floating around in the world of Digital and Social Media it can seem quite daunting to the uninitiated, however, success is possible if you take small steps.
Three ways to increase your online presence and develop an alternative sales channel are as follows:
1) Social Media
Social networks have surpassed local media as the most efficient and cost effective way for businesses to target consumers by demographics, geography and interests. Popular social networks include Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn and YouTube.
2) Content Marketing
Your digital marketing should include attractive digital content which will be informative, educational and engaging while helping convince consumers to buy from you.
Having an online store works for many retailers as more people can access your store from more locations at any time of the day or night.
To show that digital marketing can be effective for businesses in the hardware sector, we spoke to HAI member Joe Connolly from Stakelums Home & Hardware, Thurles, Co. Tipperary.
”We are on Facebook with 5,700 fans and are on Twitter, on YouTube and are considering Instagram and Pinterest too. We have started to promote some of our posts and also the page itself using through Facebook Ads. We find that we can engage with our customers easily through Facebook and also that the content that we use has a bearing on the effectiveness of the post.”
Joe added that “Social networks can be vital in helping you capture potential customers email addresses which then can be added to your database so that you can regularly email newsletters to them. It can also be used to help drive traffic to your website which is your online shopfront. It’s all about top of mind awareness.”
Websites and social media are crucial for hardware businesses to keep and find new customers it’s all about bricks and clicks as they say!
The HAI has tailored a Digital & Social Marketing Bootcamp specifically for people working in the hardware sector. We incorporate case studies from the hardware sector with local and international insights from the sector and similar markets. There are two specialist streams, one for Retailers and one for Suppliers. The first dates of the training will take place in April. See hardware.socialmedia.ie for booking details- special member rate of 300euro.
The above was an piece written for the Hardware Journal by Conor Lynch, CEO of SocialMedia.ie and winner of the Irish Internet Association Netvisionary award for the ‘Best Use of Social Media’.