The importance of getting your social media right

With a third of the population obsessed with social media, The Used Kitchen Company’s Looeeze Grossman says it’s an area that even the busiest of us should not ignore

Illustration of social media

Social media has become a crucial part of retailers’ online strategies – not only as the perfect platform for customers to view their products, but also a great opportunity to strengthen their online presence.

For most consumers, social media is the first place they’ll go for inspiration when starting their renovation journey. They’ll endlessly research renovation posts for inspiration and guidance on how they can create the look they want on their budget.

They’ll discover which colours and materials are trending, build their own boards on Pinterest, save reels and posts from Instagram and begin to follow their favourite accounts. If you’re not dedicating time and money to your social accounts, you will be missing out big time on visibility among a key audience.

This may seem like a bold statement to make. Yet it’s one I can back up with my own social media story. At the beginning of 2020, our Instagram was sitting comfortably at around 4,000 followers.

During lockdown, it became clear Instagram and home renovation had become a perfect partnership and we dedicated hours to building our Instagram – boosting posts, promoting stories and interacting with businesses and renovators. Now we have built our very own #tukcommunity and nearly 50k followers.

We realised how important it was to tap into the huge volume of traffic searching for renovation advice online and we needed to get serious about our socials. We started producing reels, we regularly uploaded great before-and-after images so our audience could see how our kitchens would look in a real home, and we held auctions targeted to our social channels, giving people a reason to check them out regularly to see what bargains they could snap up.

We also created a reason for people to keep checking back. With new kitchens being listed every day, there was always new content for our followers to see and engage with. Introducing items from our Something Else for Sale section (which is our subcategory for non-kitchen related used and ex-display furniture) also added to the interest factor, with people not expecting a beautiful freestanding bath, dressing room or full house clearance to turn up in our feed.

This led to a number of influencers and celebrities contacting us to sell their kitchens, which in turn led to some amazing shout-outs and many new followers.

Dedicate a team member

This year, we have employed an in-house social media expert to maintain and grow our social media, because social media isn’t something you can just dip in and out of if you want to see significant results. You’ll need to dedicate a team member to manage it. Algorithms are changing all the time and there’s an awful lot to take on board – it’s a never-ending learning curve.

You can alternatively outsource content creation and management to someone who specialises in this. Find someone who is happy to pop down to the showroom to film your reels and video content. Photos are great, but to capitalise on the widest reach available you need to be doing a mix of media. From photos, to before-and-after videos, and some live reels to engage with your followers, so they can see who’s behind the business.

Convert your Instagram to a business account as you’ll then reap the benefit of real-time figures and stats on your audience. You’ll be able to see which posts are working and which aren’t, and actively create more content to match your engaging posts.

This level of intensity doesn’t come easy. It didn’t to me. Instagram is a very cost-effective way to promote your brand and adds a visual concept that other forms of advertising don’t permit. It is a whole new way of generating traffic to your website and creating an ever-increasing database of potential customers you may never have dreamt of reaching.

My advice to anyone starting their social media journey is to forget everything you think you know and speak to an expert who does this day in, day out.

Be ready to invest time and money into content creation. Be patient. You won’t get thousands of followers overnight, but they will steadily grow with the right content, the right hashtags and the right tone for your audience.

Listen to our episode of The kbbreview Podcast all about how retailers can get solid leads from Instagram using the player below. Or on your podcast player of choice like Apple PodcastsSpotify or YouTube.

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