You've jumped on the social media marketing train, and you've amassed a respectable number of fans and followers. But getting social media followers is only the first step.

To harness the full potential of social media to grow your business, you need to turn your followers into paying customers. Not sure how to convince them to convert? Here are three of the most effective ways to turn your social media followers into customers:

1. Share user-generated content on social media

Social media is an excellent way to not only engage with your existing customers, but to find new customers as well. To gain credibility with followers who aren't yet customers, share user-generated content.

Encourage your current customers to submit photos of themselves wearing or using your products. Ask them to tag their photos with a unique hashtag for a chance to be featured on your brand's profile. Then share some of the best submissions, and use them as a form of social proof.

Customer-submitted photos are a compelling and authentic way to showcase your products being used. They're proof to potential customers that people already love your products, which can help convince them to make a purchase.

You can also share or retweet positive posts about your brand, and good reviews of your products.

2. Showcase influencers using your products

Current customers vouching for your products can be a great way to turn your social media followers into customers. But what if those endorsements came from authority figures in your industry? It could further convince your followers to try your products.

In fact, Experticity found that 82 percent of consumers will likely follow an influencer's product recommendation.

Work with influencers to create posts showcasing themselves using your products. You can even go one step further, and have an influencer create an explainer video, or video tutorial for your products.

Influencer marketing content can help demonstrate the value and trustworthiness of your products. Which can help you convert followers into customers.

3. Make it easy for people to give you their money

People use social media to relax and entertain themselves. If they see a photo of one of your products on social media, and decide they want to buy it, they may not actively try to find it on your website.

When you promote your products on social media, you need to make it as easy as possible for people to buy them.

  • Facebook - On Facebook, you can add a Shop tab to your Page. You just need a Facebook Page and an ecommerce store.
  • Twitter - On Twitter, social selling gets a bit tricky. Twitter phased out their "buy" button earlier this year. But you can still post product photos with links to the product pages on your website.
  • Instagram - In the past, selling on Instagram was challenging. But the new Shop Now button, and the ability to add links and ads in Instagram Stories has mave it much easier to buy, and sell on the platform.
  • Pinterest - With Buyable Pins, your followers can purchase your products without having to leave Pinterest. The platform also introduced a new way to sell on Pinterest with Shop the Look Pins earlier this year.

These are some of the best ways to engage your social media followers, and turn them into customers.

Remember: show them your products in context, and in action to win their trust and create desire. Then make it as easy as possible for shoppers to complete their purchases.

Got any questions about these tips? Let me know in the comments below.

Published on: May 3, 2017