We share an abundance of our lives on social channels. Still, there are times we want to send someone a direct message. You’ve done it personally, but why invest in direct messages for marketing campaigns? This article explores the many good reasons a business would use its social channels to “DM” its audience.
Just in case you’re wondering, what is a direct message? A DM is a private communication between social channel users. You can send a direct message to someone on Facebook, LinkedIn, Instagram, Twitter, and so on.
When considering DM for business, be aware that there are certain rules for each channel. For instance:
- Facebook doesn’t let you DM a business page unless you’ve liked that page already
- You can only send DMs to up to 15 people on Instagram
- Twitter allows you to DM up to 50 people but requires a follow
- You need to have LinkedIn Mail to connect with anyone who is not a first connection
That covered, the question remains, why invest in direct messages for marketing campaigns? There are many benefits for a small business and entrepreneur. It helps that DMs offer:
- Direct one-on-one communication
- Conversational approach
- Opportunities for relationship building
We’ll discuss each of these advantages in greater detail next.
Direct One-on-One Communication
Direct messaging replaces the scattershot approach of social media with a singular approach. You could target an individual customer or business partner, reach out to a potential social influencer or brand ambassador, and open a one-on-one exchange.
Unlike a personal DM exchange where you might just drop in a link or share a meme, have a strategy for the direct message from your business. Maintain professionalism and continue to embody your brand voice and values.
Your customers may also reach out to you via DM. So, you must monitor your social media mailboxes for this type of outreach. When they are reaching out on a social channel, they are expecting a quick response. You don’t want to fail to respond. One option is to set up alerts notifying you of any activity or a chatbot to answer common questions from your customers automatically.
Direct messaging communicates with one individual at a time. Even if you are using it in a business marketing campaign, make an effort to personalize your message.
It’s not going to get you anywhere to send a blanket DM to a new follower on Twitter that says: “Hey, thanks for following us! Check out our website!” or “Happy to connect! Learn more about X here.” There’s nothing personalized about that.
And personalization is expected today. According to Salesforce, “52 percent of consumers and 65 percent of business buyers will switch brands if the vendor doesn’t personalize communications.”
Your recipient wants to know that you intended this message for him or her in particular. Using their first name will help. If you can reference something relevant to that contact, you’ll give the DM a more personal touch.
Not thinking about DMs exclusively, but still useful, Salesforce offers the following eight factors that could impact personalization:
- Location – City, country, region
- Device – iPhone, iPad, Android phone/tablet, Windows, Mac, Linux
- Search keywords – Did they arrive while searching for shoes or shirts?
- Visitor frequency – First, second, third, fifth-time visitor?
- When they visit – Date and time of day, proximity to payday
- Referring URL – Where did they come from?
- Customer history – Have they bought from you before? What did they buy, and how much did it cost?
- Sessions behavior – Navigation clicks, page views
A big no-no when it comes to DMs for business? Using this channel to send promotional messages. You don’t want to be associated with spam communications. That will quickly sour your relationship with the customer!
Just as you wouldn’t abuse the private phone number of a company’s CEO, you don’t want to flood a potential business partner’s social message inbox. Any good conversation is like a ping pong game. One person communicates, and the other responds. This goes back and forth in real-time, gradually building a trusting relationship.
Personalization tailors what you are saying to a customer via DM based on prior exchanges, provided data, or previous behaviors. On the other hand, customization is when you modify the marketing content to suit the particular channel.
When developing direct messages for Instagram or Twitter, don’t use a generic message. DMs have the most impact when they are relevant and acknowledge the channel you’re using. The big advantage of social media is that it can provide instant reach.
You might DM a customer to:
- Thank them for their follow
- Announce sneak peeks of content or videos
- Send a personalized card
- Address a negative experience
Since it’s social, you want to be sure that you’re customizing your communication to be quickly scannable, visually appealing, and mobile-friendly too.
Opportunities for Relationship Building
Powerful direct message marketing begins with a social following. You’ll need to build out your channels with businesses and people you want to communicate with. Once you begin your direct messaging marketing effort, you can start building solid and long-lasting relationships.
DMs target a specific, segmented audience. Better still, you can build your next message on previous ones to establish credibility and consistency.
Use DMs to reach out to potential business partners and make that first connection. Or to provide a great customer experience by having a real conversation with people, scheduling appointments, or resolving a concern privately.
If a customer does complain about something on your social feed, don’t overlook the importance of acknowledging that comment publicly. You don’t want other followers to think that an individual is being ignored. Then, reach out directly via messaging to provide an answer or solution.
Do More With Direct Messaging for Marketing
When you invest in direct messaging for marketing campaigns, you tap into an affordable mode of communicating. You can optimize your approach to a targeted audience and create new business opportunities in real-time exchanges.
Direct messages are just one component of a successful digital marketing campaign. You’ll also need a business domain, a vibrant and up-to-date business website, and to list your business in local directories. Find out more about the many ways you can grow your business by reviewing the many helpful articles in our resource center.