Are you selling goods on social media? Here’s how to get it right

We find Kagema Mwangi busy uploading product images of Felly’s Nut Butter on his business’ Instagram page.

Since May 2019, Kagema took to social media to market and promote his startup, a move that has seen him reach out to customers from across Nairobi.

At the moment, startups and established enterprises alike have turned to social media platforms to market and advertise their products and services as well as to interact with their customers.

When Covid-19 struck, tough containment measures have seen a drastic decline of footfall in major physical outlets of businesses, leaving social media as the main platform that enterprises use to market and keep in touch with customers.

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Social media is, however, fraught with challenges and Kagema helps us unpack some of the do’s, don’ts and the requisite etiquette given his experience.

How did you grow your social media page and the brand?

When it comes to interacting with consumers, you need to know whom you’re addressing your message to. I learnt my market and realized family was my main target audience so I used that. Again I changed the branding to a more relatable one, as social media accounts should be tailored to match the expectations. Lastly of course I put money to it when it comes to reaching more people on Instagram, which is the main platform I am using right now to reach out.

How often do you post?

Consistency is very critical when it comes to running a social media page. I ensure that I post twice per week and every day on Instagram stories.

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How do you interact with your audience?

Well, providing helpful content is nice, but it’s not all social media has to offer. Interacting with your followers is key. I look at questions or comments that I can answer and send the person a friendly reply. Again I ensure I follow up on customers to know how they are experiencing the product. Time to time I also deliver orders personally.

What is the one Don’t for running a business social media page?

When building a brand, it helps to keep your personal and professional pages separate on social media. “Although, I use my personal page to promote my business page as it has more followers,” says Kagema.

How do you handle online criticism?

In a case where you run into an issue that causes a flurry of criticism on social media, the worst thing you can do is try and hide from it. Try to respond the best way you can, and don’t become defensive. I also take criticism positively as it helps me know what to change on the product and company in general.

Lastly but not least, what are some of the challenges you face?

Sometimes I may not meet the expectations of a buyer as everyone is different. Second, the delivery may cost quite more, if the buyer is far away.

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