When we started The Social Experiment our number one goal wasn’t to make more sales, it was to be of service and to deliver valuable and informative content that people could use in a very practical way.
It was also about giving people the tools and insights to create real transformations in their lives, their relationships, their health and in their business.
And what’s interesting is I’m pretty sure for the first 18 months we didn’t even put a link in a post or ask for anything in return. We just gave as much as we could give.
However, during that period, organically over time people started to message me asking if we’ve got products or services that they could buy. And now I get messages every day from people wanting to buy.
So here’s my advice…
Change your perspective
You have to change your perspective from, ‘How do I use social media to create more sales?’
To, ‘How do I use social media to deliver more value?’
Because if you’re delivering as much value as you possibly can, more people are going to be inclined to reach out to you.
Make sure you have a theme that people can clearly see on your website and social media accounts which is around the problems you solve. And make sure they are big enough problems to warrant the investment of cash or capital that’s required to fix them.
The mere exposure effect
The mere exposure effect is a psychological phenomena where people tend to create a preference for things because they become familiar with them.
Back in 2005 research told us that the average person needed to be exposed to a business, a product, a brand or a service 5.4 times in order to form the trust and familiarity needed to give people the confidence to reach out and just have a conversation with a company.
In 2012 it was 12.8, and they’re predicting by 2020 it will be as many as 20 exposures required.
Now think about this in your own life, how many times have you been in a situation where you’ve had to see a brand a few times before you felt comfortable enough to approach them?
When you know people need to be exposed to a brand let’s say at the moment 18-20 times, how often are you getting in front of them with the right information?
And key word here is the right information. Because just as much as people can develop a positive opinion about your brand they can also create a negative one if you’re not getting your messages right.
If you look at our content strategy, 99.99 is value add or utility content.
There’s not endless call to actions, no links to websites, it’s just give, give, give, give… say that 99.9 times and then 0.1 per cent of the time you can then ask if they would like to do business with you.
And by that point you have given so much that people are gagging to purchase from you.
This engages with the law of reciprocation. This is where an internal pressure is created within people where they feel the need to give back in return for the genuine value they have received.
The moral of the story is give and then give some more.
So if you can change your perception from a sales based mentality to a value add mentality when it comes to social media and apply the mere exposure effect rules, as well as giving as much as you possibly can, then and only then, will you be primed with enough interest, loyalty and trust to start generating sales from your social media content.