So let’s get to part two of my social networking series for your shop or if you are starting a coffee shop business. It’s exciting to break into new areas of marketing. It has never been easier to market a business since the online world arrived and has evolved. Here are some more ideas for you:
How can I leave out Facebook? Today, there are so many people and companies using it to keep in touch and their name in front of people. I cannot think of a better way to do this. Some companies are opting to put more emphasis on Facebook rather than their company website as the latter is so limited now.
You can elect to build a ‘friend’ page or a ‘like’ page. The friend page will require you to approve anyone wanting to be friends while the like page will not require approval.
It is a good idea to keep personal and business as separate Facebook pages. This is good for obvious reasons but really a good idea as it increases your chances of circulation (you post, friends comment, their friends see it and comment) but also shows a level of professionalism as well. The best part of this is that friends will repost your post and if it’s interesting enough so will their friends.
Facebook is a great place to also promote your shop so customers can know when you have fresh roasted coffee in so they can buy coffee beans.
Of course, (to tweet is sweet!). Twitter is basically a short version of blogging because it is 140 characters or less to type. A popular thing is to tweet within your 140 characters enough information to redirect followers to your blog where the full story is. You can also redirect them to your website or Facebook. You can essentially post the same information to all places; your blog, Facebook, Twitter, and your website if you set it up right. There are ways to allow each site to collect and distribute the same information to the other. This is another area to stay focused on your business and its doings. Of course this works great even if you are about to open a coffee shop.
I recommend using your website as a base and when you update the site, then blog about what you did as well as a few other relevant things. Then update your Twitter and Facebook so all of these social networking platforms get the information on what you did. This will redirect people to your blog, and also to your site making a circle of marketing. As long as you create compelling information on all of your posts and sites, you will gain a network of followers.
What is great about Facebook is when you post, and one of your friends comments on it it will show on their friends pages and you have great potential to gain new customers this way to buy coffee beans or beverages so be relevant and stay on topic.
Foursquare is a location-based social networking service, mostly used via smartphone applications, though popular on the web. It allows registered users to connect with friends and update their location. Then, points are awarded for “checking in” at venues and users can choose to have their check-ins posted on their accounts on Twitter, Facebook or both. Users can also earn badges by checking in at locations with certain tags and eventually become mayor of the venue.
So why is Foursquare a marketing tool for my coffee shop you ask? Well, many businesses are now offering special deals to people who check-in via Foursquare. Starbucks recently inked a deal with them so customers can earn a “Barista badge” by checking in five times at a Starbucks location. The independent can do something similar by signing up as well like extra points for frequent buyers, free refills on drip or something else equally of value. If you are going to open a coffee shop this is a great way to promote grand opening specials.
Social networking is almost limitless and for the price (usually FREE!) you cannot afford to go without it. Next time we will round out the social networking talk with a few more ideas for your marketing strategies.
My name is Tony DiCorpo, and I am a coffee roaster, coffee shop business consultant and barista trainer. I have written an eBook on how to start a coffee shop. I also own Troubadour Coffee Roasting Co. where I sell coffee and espresso equipment and where you can buy coffee beans.