4 Tips for Using Social Media to Increase Business Foot Traffic

Sometimes small businesses mistake social media marketing for something that’s for businesses with online stores only. After all, they can offer “click here to save” offers, but you require customers to drive or walk to your store, restaurant or business location. Dismissing social media is a huge mistake for any business, even ones with limited online presence. Drive more people to your business with effective use of social media by focusing on increasing foot traffic.

Earn Your Master’s


Higher education isn’t just a must for people looking to get promoted. A graduate degree can make you a more creative marketer with familiarity with the latest, most effective marketing techniques. In a digital-heavy era, staying up to date is a must. A master’s degree in business with a specialization in marketing will give you the tools you need to more effectively use social media. It would probably be a great idea for your business to encourage anyone else on your marketing team to do the same.
Offer “Keyword Deals”
Keywords are part of basic internet marketing. However, how you use keywords outside of the Internet may surprise you. Try “keyword deals” at your business.

  • Pick a secret word or phrase related to the product or service you’re pushing for the day. For example, if you’re trying to sell t-shirts, make the keyword something like “wearing my t-shirt on a hot summer day” or just “t-shirts.”
  • Post the keyword on your social media accounts. Along with the keyword put instructions like, “Mention today’s special phrase at our store and get a free t-shirt with a minimum $20 purchase” or “mention this and get 20 percent off.” You might want to include additional instructions, such as telling the server or cashier before ordering or paying, or telling a greeter at the door in exchange for a coupon.
  • Continue with other “keyword deals” at least once a week, if not more often. Build excitement for keyword deals and alert social media followers to watch out for them ahead of time. For example: “Friday’s keyword deal will help you save big on the season’s hottest t-shirts. Check back that day!”

Ask to See Proof of Follow


In addition to limited-time keyword deals, offer a standing promotion when customers show that they follow your social media profiles with their phones or tablets at your location. The deal can be small so it won’t cut too heavily into your profits. For example, “a free cookie with purchase” or “10% off a purchase of $50 or more.” Use this proof-of-follow deal as a way to advertise the benefits of following your company’s posts on Twitter, Facebook, Tumblr, Pinterest, Instagram or other social media profiles you create.

Entice With Mystery Products

Another way to turn your social media followers into brick-and-mortar customers is to use the social media profiles to build up momentum for an event taking place at your location.
For example, say you decide to promote the launch of a brand new flavor of coffee on a certain date. In the days and weeks leading up to the product launch, describe the benefits of the product. In the example of a new flavor of coffee, you might say something like, “skip the bland cup of java in the morning and make breakfast an experience.”
Next, put up a clue image to give hints of what’s to come. You might blur a cup of coffee or something related to the flavor, like a piece of fruit or a tropical location. Emphasize that the full reveal will occur at your location at the specific date and customers can see it in person there that day. Refrain from revealing the full product online for a couple of days or even a week after to give it more of an air of mystery.
The American Marketing Association reported a Chicago area business saw a 30 percent increase thanks to keyword deals and social media marketing. Using social media to increase foot traffic in your location is an inexpensive way to market, and it won’t prove overly time-consuming once you find the most effective uses for your business. The aim of advertising on social media is to increase your level of interactivity with your customers; put the ball in their court and ask them to step out from behind their computers, tablets and smartphones to visit you in person.