Using Coupons With Social Media

If you’re in retail, either online or off, you already know that coupons are a great marketing tool to bring in new business. But if you’re not using social media to amplify your coupons, you’re missing out on valuable opportunities to connect with even more new customers. Here are a few ways you can offer savings to a wider audience.

Set up a Custom Landing Page on Facebook

If you’ve dabbled in custom Facebook tabs, you know that they’re a great way to direct Facebook traffic toward a specific campaign, be it sale, contest or promotion. Many brands are now using that same tab to share coupons, either printables or online codes. In Social Media Marketing eLearning Kit for Dummies, Phyllis Khare recommends creating a Like/Reveal landing page that requires visitors to like the page before the coupon is revealed. She says Woobox is a great tool for customizing that coupon page.

Share a Discount Code Each Week

You can also simply share a code that a customer can input in the checkout process on your site on your Facebook, Twitter and other social channels, says Khare.  Encourage others to share it and retweet it for maximum exposure. You could create a code for specific products, or simply a percent off the entire purchase.

Get on Coupon Sites

There are hundreds of sites and blogs dedicated to sharing coupons and deals with readers. Many, like RetailMeNot, let retailers like you post your own coupon codes. You can also work with couponing bloggers like The Krazy Coupon Lady to find other ways to promote your deals. Many coupon blogs offer advertising, so you might find it cost-effective to buy a small ad with a photo of your products and a link to the coupon code or printable.

You can also offer special deals on your Yelp page, and don’t overlook daily deal sites like Groupon as a great way to get people in the door at a low price.

Tips to Keep in Mind

Don’t “give away” more coupons than you can afford to. Coupons cut your profits, so make sure you still cover your expenses. The idea is to create a loss leader to get business in, then work to encourage them to come back to buy at regular price in your brick and mortar or online store.

Realize that coupons may cost you. If you invest in online ads or daily deals, there will be a fee or revenue share you have to give up. Coupons aren’t always free marketing, so be aware of that.

Not every channel will work for your type of business. If you’re a local tire shop, social media might not be your best channel. You might do better with direct mail coupons.

Susan Payton is the President of Egg Marketing & Communications, an internet marketing firm specializing in marketing communications, copywriting and blog posts. She’s written two books: 101 Entrepreneur Tips and Internet Marketing Strategies for Entrepreneurs, and has blogged for several sites, including The Marketing Eggspert Blog, as well as MashableSmall Business TrendsFutureSimple, and Lead411. Follow her on Twitter @eggmarketing.

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