Having a solid presence on social media is the foundation for developing an active online presence.
It is the way that digital marketing campaigns find success and how you locate and draw in a varied customer base. There are about 3.5 billion people that use some form of social media each day (Emarsys, 2019). This means that about 45% of the world’s population engages with it in some way, shape, or form. If you are not making your garden center or greenhouse discoverable, then you are missing out. Using social media channels to advertise and draw people into your business has unlimited growth potential. It might not seem like it as you get started, though. You watch your follower numbers crawl slowly upward, or you do not grasp how to harness the full potential. Although it can seem complicated, it doesn’t have to be with some crafty ideas and plenty of engagement. The best thing about social media? It is free. Keep reading for useful tips on utilizing free social media platforms to their fullest for a garden center or greenhouse.
Cross-Post on Multiple Platforms
Whether you decide to go with Instagram, Facebook, Twitter, or something else, your primary focus depends mostly on the demographic you want to reach. More often than not, working on a combination of all three and cross-posting reaches the largest audience since social media pages will each have a varied set of followers. That way, all of your audience has a higher likelihood of engaging with you.
Use Instagram Stories and Videos
Instagram is a platform full of possibilities and thought to be quite user-friendly. It makes it an easier interface to figure out how to use, even if you are new to the Insta scene. Put Instagram Stories to use to increase the discoverability of your greenhouse. With a business that sells as visually pleasing products as a garden center, it is easier to appeal to the nature of this method. Instagram Stories allows you to put up a post, such as a photo or a video. These are temporary, only lasting for 24 hours unless added to a Highlights compilation. One-third of all the most-viewed Instagram Stories are from businesses (Hootsuite, 2020). These Instagram Stories are not only visible to your followers, but to a broader audience as well. It is this characteristic that makes them useful for increasing the discoverability of your garden center. Use this to feature individual plants or in-store designs. You can note special ones that seem to be popular or those that are not getting as much attention as they deserve. Make these Instagram Stories to inspire potential customers to come in for the first time.
Create a Blog or a Vlog
Growing a blog or a vlog are both great ways to establish yourself as a place to gain knowledge on gardening or advice. A blog would often be featured on the garden center website, but some people can use Instagram posts for their blog instead. Another option is to use the appealing beauty of a space like the inside of the greenhouse and combine it with YouTube. Creating a vlog allows you to record, perhaps teach a free online seminar, give a tour of the area, or highlight special plants and designs you currently have.
Don’t Forget Engagement
As you develop your social media channels, do not forget to engage with your followers. It “impresses” their algorithms and boosts the likelihood that your posts will be the ones that show up on followers pages and more. What this means is that if someone comments on your posts, reply back to them. You can feature standout employees or create a post about the customer “Linda’s” favorite plant this week. Your social media shouldn’t just be stagnant. Instead, use it to build a loyal community of customers year-round.
Collaborate or Get Featured
Collaborating with other social media channels is an excellent way to grow your following or friends-base. There are many influencers now that might be willing to work with small businesses. If there are some in your local area, try contacting them and working out an agreement for a feature on their page. Doing so can help convert a reasonable number of locals to your page and help draw them into the store.
Make Your Links Accessible
Once you have developed social media for your greenhouse or a garden center, you don’t want to hide it. Try to get it out there for as many people to see as possible. This means that if anyone engages with your business in any way online, it makes it very convenient for them to engage in other ways. If someone looks you up locally from a Google search, then they will often click on your website. From here, there should be links at the top of the page, directing them to your Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, or YouTube if you have one. On each of your other social media platforms, make the others visible by linking or adding in their buttons. That way, the client follows you on whatever platform they use the most.
It can help to keep these tips and tricks in your back pocket as you develop your social media platforms.
However, even equipped with them, it can feel overwhelming. Contact Bloom to get helpful suggestions, guidance, and more specifically tailored to develop digital marketing for garden centers.
Amanda Williams is a freelance writer that specializes in topics on gardening and online marketing. As a graduate with an honors degree in Horticulture and experience working in greenhouses, she understands the marketing challenges within the plant production industry. She has a background in content marketing, which she uses to help small businesses and enterprises enhance their advertising schemes. Find her work at clearvoice.com/cv/AmandaWilliams3.