How to Use Social Media to Persuade Your Audience

How to Use Social Media to Persuade Your Audience (Source: - used as royalty free image)

Social media is a lot of things for marketers. It’s a channel for conventional paid advertising. It’s a way of building an online community. It’s a source for bolstering off-page SEO. It’s a space for talking with your audience and addressing their needs. It’s a public calling card for your brand.

What do so many of these functions share? They’re all about encouraging your audience to click through to your site and become hot leads – and, eventually, customers. Ready to drive up your conversions from social media? Then you need to learn to use it to persuade your audience.

With our thanks to Social Media Examiner for some of these concepts, here are three ways to make your social media accounts more persuasive – helping you convert curious visitors into satisfied customers:

Engage With User-Generated Content

What inspires more trust than a glowing review?

A social media presence generously accented with five-star reviews, testimonials, and other submissions from satisfied customers sticks out in new users’ minds, making your brand seem more trustworthy and likable from the word go.

Want to increase your standing and reputation in the eyes of your social media visitors? Include user-generated “social proof” in all aspects of your social media marketing efforts:

Include reviews as posts
Repurpose glowing testimonials as individual Facebook posts or Instagram captions.

Solicit reviews 
Turn on the “Allow Visitors to Review This Page” option on your Facebook page, and encourage your happiest customers to leave reviews not just on Facebook, but Yelp, Google, and any industry-specific message boards or review sites.

Incorporate reviews into your targeted ads
Facebook and Instagram allow for extremely sophisticated targeting (and retargeting) options; seeing a satisfied review on their timeline may be enough to persuade an on-the-fence customer into taking the plunge.

Write Customer Numbers Into Your Copy

Users love emotional posts. Triggering feelings of awe, wonder, and nostalgia are powerful ways to encourage increased engagement and clickthrough. But there’s another way to put social media to work driving in leads and conversions – with cold, hard numbers!

Assure new visitors that you’re an established, trustworthy organization by emphasizing the number clients or customers that you work with – and, of course, how much you appreciate them! McDonald’s pulled one of the original – and best – versions of this with “Billions and Billions Served;” it creates a sense of trustworthiness and, perhaps even more importantly, brand loyalty. Quantifying your success makes your brand into a sort of established, impressive club – one that anyone would be happy to buy into!

Another way to emphasize your value? With infographics, charts, and data visualizations! Check out our guide on putting visual data to work for your business for some ideas on how to get started.

Connect With Influencers

There’s a reason the celebrity spokesperson is the oldest trick in the book for conventional advertisers – because it works! There’s something endlessly appealing about seeing a cool person use and endorse a product. Creating a direct line between an artist, athlete, or authority figure to your product creates a powerful message in the minds of consumers: Want to be as cool/confident/successful as this person? Then buy this product.

The idea of the social media influencer is the same as that of the celebrity endorsement, just retooled for the digital age. Seeing someone you like, trust, admire, or want to emulate use a product is going to subtly influence you to use that same product. It’s a tried-and-true method, because it gets results: According to research from Twitter, nearly 40% of Twitter users say they’ve made a purchase as a direct result of a Tweet from an influencer. That’s huge.

The best news? Influencers don’t need to be uber-famous to contribute a substantial spike in interest for your brand. Foster connections with not just local celebrities, but thought leaders in your industry. A person with major clout (or Klout) spreading the word about your brand with a selfie, a review, or even an @-tag could do wonders for your social PR.

Want to take a fresh approach to social media marketing in the months ahead? Geek is here to help! Whether you’re looking for a comprehensive digital marketing strategy or just a team to bounce some ideas off of, feel free to drop us a line! Our social media mavens are always ready to talk shop.

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Jason Finn

Founder & Chief Geek

Jason has nearly 20 years of consulting experience, predominantly in the technology space. Most recently he was the COO and Director of Technology for Rich Casto & Company, a national training and consulting organization in the real estate industry.
As a consultant for IBM, PricewaterhouseCoopers LLP, and Envision Consulting Group (now IMS Health), Jason has served clients of all sizes, including Big Pharma, Fortune 500, and Global 1000 companies:

  • Allstate Insurance Company
  • AOL (America Online)
  • Astellas Pharmaceuticals
  • Eli Lilly and Company
  • Ford Motor Credit
  • Wockhardt USA (formerly Morton Grove Pharmaceuticals)
  • Norwich Union
  • PNC Bank
  • Reynolds and Reynolds

Sarunas Budrikas

Creative Director

Sarunas is a web design and development expert with hundreds of successful projects in his portfolio. He is passionate about delivering extraordinary user experiences for every client and consistently goes above and beyond everyone’s expectations. As an SEO expert and strategist, he can optimize your website, or app, to get the most out of it, day in and day out. Sarunas holds a degree in Electrical Engineering from Kaunas Technology University, in Lithuania. Sarunas now lives in Chicago, and calls it home.

Alexandra Olsavsky

Client Experience Specialist

Alex specializes in content generation and social media promotion for Geek | Chicago clients, helping to solidify their presence in the online community. This includes blog writing, graphic design, co-ordination and design of weekly newsletters, and active engagement on Facebook, Twitter, Google+, and LinkedIn. Outside of Geek, Alex is a classically-trained soprano who professionally performs around the city of Chicago (most recently with the Chicago Baroque Band, and with the Rolling Stones for their "50 and Counting" tour).