There’s an all-too popular misconception that social media only works for established brands with huge followings, and that small and even medium businesses
Let’s take a look at a few exciting campaigns from smaller businesses that managed to find success on social platforms:
Coconut Bliss is an ice cream company based in Oregon that has used social media very effectively to grow their business over the past few years. Thanks to strategic contests and partnerships, and keeping their social accounts filled with high quality images to keep their customers craving more, they’ve been able to create a rabid following of people who adore their products, their branding, and their message.
They managed to promote their products, without that “corporate” feel, in large part due to sharing images of their products in the real world, rather than some photo-shopped fantasy land that looks like it was downloaded from stock photo sites most commercials and promos use.
What they’ve done was that they’ve shown people enjoying themselves while eating the products. What Coconut Bliss has also done is that they’ve partnered with other sites and have promoted a contest together, which exposed the audiences of both parties to one another.
Key Takeaway: Being genuine and showing your product as it really is will fortunately differentiate you from your competition. Leveraging partnerships and contests coupled with differentiation will put you on your consumers maps faster than almost anything else.
The popular children’s game Jinx, which involves yelling the name of the game out when two people say the same thing at the same time, has found its way onto social media.
When two Twitter users say “mac & cheese” at the same time, both are automatically sent a tweet from Kraft. Whoever responds back first wins 5 boxes of Kraft dinners, and a branded T-Shirt.
Now, Kraft isn’t a small business, but this technique can be applied to small businesses because in this case, it’s Kraft doing the outreach rather than relying on their big brand name to bring people in. That means you could do something equivalent to this just as easily as Kraft did! Just go more local, and target users that are living in regions you operate in.
Key Takeaway: The results from this campaign are a lot of attention, and earning a lot of goodwill from potential customers. Unexpected acts of generosity often create tons of positive buzz, so why not take advantage of that?
Scott Jarvie is a photographer with a unique style, who is taking advantage of some of the most popular social media platforms. Scott is in a good position because social media lends itself perfectly to sharing pictures, and the best pictures get shared again and again. So, since he’s promoting a visual-based business, it only makes sense to really focus on social media.
But Scott has gained prominence as he has trained other photographers in his unique style. All his social media channels and his blog are full of great, helpful tips. A strong social presence has allowed JarvieDigital to position themselves as a dominant force in photography, whether it’s for weddings or nature shots.
Key Takeaway: Help people reach their goals, and in the long run, if you give out actual value, they will eat out of your hand, and you will profit as well.
Mater Foundation, Charity
The Mater Foundation struck up a partnership with a local favorite Brisbane sports club (The Lions). Their joint campaign consisted of representatives of Mater handing out Chinese fortune cookies to all sports fans that showed up during a particular Brisbane Lions match.
The 15.000 fortune cookies that were handed out held invites for game attendees to send an SMS message to a particular number, so they could sign up for the Mater home lottery and help out people with cancer and kids in need with the proceeds. In return, they would get a chance to win the main prize just for the people attending the game – a chance to spend three days with Brisbane Lions and go on an away match with them, which they could enjoy from the corporate box.
Over 2500 people participated in the draw, and as many have signed up for Mater’s newsletter.
Key Takeaway: Leveraging partnerships, especially for medium sized businesses, giving people an easy way to participate in your campaign and hitting the right nerve (in this case – helping those in need) is often enough to produce great results.
Anna White, Carpet Expert
Anna White is a carpenter in Alaska who started sharing her thoughts and knowledge about carpeting, and has built a following on Facebook of over two hundred thousand people.
She also blogs, and thanks to that massive Facebook audience, everything she blogs is going to have a built-in massive audience. This is a great example of somebody positioning themselves as a leader in their niche, and letting their knowledge and amazing content speak for itself.
Key Takeaway: It can’t get stressed enough – show your knowledge of your own industry and help people in the process. It will pay off if you’re consistent. Anna’s 200,000 Facebook fans can’t be argued with.
Takeaways & Conclusion
- The main takeaways here are to be genuine and earnest in your social media efforts, which is possible for a medium and small business to do much more easily than it is for a huge corporation.
- You’re more nimble, so use it to your advantage.
- It’s okay for some personality to shine through in your online presence.
- It’s ok if you don’t get it right the first time.
- Always produce great content, and your customers will come to expect it and it will keep them coming back and converting.
Now, enough reading, it’s time to start planning your next brilliant blockbuster social media campaign!
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