I'm fascinated by this recent INC magazine article about shopping via Facebook.
Let's face it -- there are just so many ways a consumer can buy now but there are even more coming. It's easy to do when you know and trust the brand.
So most designer's first steps is to get known and trusted. NOT TO SELL like Ron Popeil! Social networking is just that .... NETWORKING!
As Michael Schector of Honora recently wrote on the GenNextJewelers blog: "The best – and most effective – social media programs aren’t based on promotions and message distribution. Instead, they revolve around removing friction and uncertainty for potential or current customers. It’s about marketing sideways, not marketing head-on."
Social media is for engagement -- and of course, that hopefully leads to sales but you have to engage them first.
Inc. Magazine's website recently showed where this engagement can lead:
"E-commerce on Facebook is something we're watching rather closely,'' says Scot Wingo, CEO of ChannelAdvisor, which helps its clients sell online through multiple channels.
The idea of actually selling on Facebook is in its frontier days. However, what Wingo and others see are retailers both large and small working to create a social selling experience more than a transaction.
"A lot of what people do is try to get people engaged, talking about the brand,'' says Andy Lloyd, CEO of Fluid, Inc., whose Facebook social shopping platform yielded eye-opening results for Rachel Roy, a division of Jones Apparel. A three-day pop-up store with Facebook-only merchandise sold out in the first six hours, the brand added 1.5 new fans a minute and the company's fan base increased 35 percent, according to Fluid.
"The challenge with shopping on Facebook is you're training users to do something different than they've done in the past,'' Lloyd says. "People really haven't shopped within Facebook.
A number of avenues are emerging to turn Facebook Fan pages into retail outlets. Lloyd recommends a cautious approach for small to mid-size businesses embracing Facebook retailing. "Start out and do something basic,'' he says, advising that you utilize existing technology and ecommerce systems.
Among the options: ....
Click the link to read the full article on INC.com Let Your Fans Shop Without Leaving Facebook.