When the pandemic struck, many retailers quickly pivoted from brick-and-mortar to online sales. With this quick shift to digital came the increased opportunity for online marketing – specifically through social media.
Over the last few years, social media’s role in the retail industry has become increasingly important. In fact, it’s estimated that nearly one in 10 purchases are made through social media, indicating that legacy retailing is taking a back seat to newer digital purchasing points.
According to Salesforce’s State of Connected Customer report, 55% of consumers prefer to engage with brands through digital channels, and that number spikes to 65% for Gen Z consumers.
Social media has allowed businesses of every size to gain access to new audiences, grow massive followings, and drive their online revenue.
Additionally, 56% of customers shop on social media more now than they did a year ago. This shift in shopping habits spotlights social media as a growing source of traffic and revenue for online businesses, with many harnessing it as a tool to drive profits.
Forward-looking retailers need to ensure they deepen social investments to future-proof their businesses. But with nearly 45% of commerce leaders feeling unprepared to build on emerging channels (like the metaverse, TikTok and new online social storefronts), many are asking: where do they start?
Invest in insight
In order to target the right audience, companies first need to know where to find them.
Knowing that audiences shop through digital channels is only the first step. Businesses then need to ask themselves: What platforms are my target audiences using? Where are they most likely to purchase? Is my branding, messaging, and service consistent across all channels?
AI tools that allow businesses to understand where and how their audience shops are key to ensuring money isn’t wasted marketing in the wrong places. Data can be a powerful tool to drive understanding around which channels can deliver the best ROI, allowing retailers to develop a social commerce strategy that works.
The power of personalisation
Once audiences have been found, targeting them with personalised content is key.
In a world where millions of new pieces of content are available to social media users every day, companies need to capture consumer interest, and fast. Personalisation ensures brands remain relevant to target audiences – an effective way to stand out against competitors.
AI tools that analyse advert performance and optimise campaigns for improved product discovery have helped businesses achieve this. Using advanced AIs that can learn quickly, match ads more effectively and build improved audiences for retargeting, companies can attract customers more easily than ever before.
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