Social media has always been a strange marketing channel. On one hand, Facebook gave businesses a unique ability to find their markets and build relationships. No other marketing tool has been able to reach such large numbers of people and allow businesses to maintain a long-standing connection with them. Despite the ability to enact some type of direct response marketing tactics, those connections don’t immediately translate into sales.
Social Media Content + Branding = Direct Response Marketing
That’s where content marketing steps in. Typically described as “branding” or “engagement-building,” content marketing’s success has been measured by reactions and shares, not by sales. The sales come later.
In many ways, companies are okay with that process. They know social media has contributed to those future purchases. In fact, it’s easier to land a new customer when the lead acknowledges they have a problem and knows there’s a solution.
Even easier is when leads know and trust your solution. Facebook has been an ideal social media marketing solution for raising awareness about those solutions. The social media channel has also helped to build that trust. As a result, conversions can take place when the offer is made.
Using Live Video to Propel Direct Response Marketing
That’s especially true when it comes to live video on social media. Marketers who have used live video have found that there’s no better way to bring leads closer to a sale. Businesses can demonstrate their products, show people how to make the most of them, and emphasize the extra value customers receive from their purchase.
At the same time, though, companies can communicate directly with their audiences. The ability to directly interact builds the trust necessary to convince people to buy from a particular brand. For example, as viewers watch, sellers can answer questions and quash objections. They get a first-hand view of the benefits available from selecting that product.
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Until now, even live video hasn’t been able to close the deal. On the other hand, infomercials have always been able to show the price of the product, flash a phone number, and urge viewers to make a purchase. With live video, sending viewers to a sales page where they can take that action just hasn’t been the best process process.
New Solutions For Direct Sales Results
However, there may be a potential solution waiting in the wings. BeLive, which makes a leading third-party add-on for Facebook Live, recently launched a live shopping list feature. Users can now showcase their products, including item descriptions and prices during the live broadcast.
It’s a simple feature. But, it’s one that promises to make a big difference not just to live video marketing but to social media marketing, in general.
If marketers on a social media platform are able to present information about a product, including its price and sales points, and direct viewers to a place where they can make a purchase, then social media is no longer just about branding and engagement. It’s about sales.
With this transformation, it’s possible to add a new direct sales benefit to social media content. Marketers can leverage new techniques to finesse the content. Also, there are an expanded number of metrics to measure direct response marketing success.
Although we’re not quite there yet, the direction is clear. Social media marketing is moving toward direct sales. Are you ready, marketers?