10 easy Facebook and Instagram content ideas for boutique owners
If the sight of the ‘create a post’ button makes your mind go blank, these 10 content prompts will help to get your social media juices flowing!
It can be hard as a retailer to decide what to feature on Facebook and Instagram. Tempting though it is to post yet another ‘stock on shelves’ photo, these soon becoming dull for followers and in extreme cases can leave you prey to the ‘mute’ or even ‘unfollow’ buttons.
When social media software company Sprout Social asked consumers what they want from brands’ posts, the top three requests were:
(Sprout Social Index, 2018)
A social media strategy that focuses solely on posting discount codes may be popular for a short time but will do nothing to grow and nurture an audience of your ideal customers. But the occasional ‘treat’, together with engaging content that showcases your best items and educates customers about you and your store, will have a much bigger impact on your bottom line.
A quick word here about video. It consistently performs better than other types of content –and 64% of internet users are more likely to buy a product online after watching a video about it (Forbes, 2017). If you haven’t tried posting ‘Stories’ on Instagram or Facebook, then certainly consider it. The ‘stories’ feed is given prominence at the top of both platforms and is a great way to try out videos as they disappear after 24 hours. (And if they do really well you can always save them to your ‘highlights’ for later use.)
With all this in mind, here are 10 simple content ideas for retail boutique owners to use on social media.
1 – Ask your followers a question
So many possibilities – ask people about their favourite book/season/colour/cake etc. Or post two different tops/shoes/birthday cards and ask them to pick which one they’d buy. These posts are a great way to increase engagement (and therefore views) but can also give you valuable information about your customers’ likes, dislikes and buying preferences.
2 – Featured product
This could be an item that’s on special offer, which you’re keen to promote, or a best-seller that’s turning into a real ‘must-have’. Make it a weekly feature and that’s 52 posts a year that you don’t have to do much thinking about!
3 – Special offers
As I said previously, there’s a fine line to tread when it comes to promoting sales on social media. Too many posts and you get the wrong sort of bargain hunter coming through the door. Done well, it can create a buzz around your store either because you only do large shop-wide events very rarely OR you spin the concept on its head and have just one or two items on special every week. You could even do both if that’s what’s right for your business.
4 – Share user-generated content
Also known as UGC, this is when your customers have tagged your items or store in their own social media and you re-use the posts in your feed. These are a brilliant opportunity for some ‘social proof’ – evidence of happy customers that can influence potential shoppers. If you repost on Instagram, it’s best practice (and good manners) to check with the originator first. Plus, that gives you a reason to connect with a contented shopper and is great positive PR for your business. You could encourage other customers to tag you on their social media when wearing/using your products – brilliant publicity for your business with minimal work for you.
5 – Present ideas
Is it Christmas/Easter/Valentines/Mother or Fathers’ Day soon? Which of your items would make an amazing gift? Tell customers why it’s special. Can you partner with a local independent card shop and feature their cards and gift wrap too? It’s a great way to get an additional audience looking at your feed if you both tag and share.
6 – Get unwrapping!
‘Unboxing’ videos aren’t just for kids on YouTube! If your product comes beautifully packaged, then show customers what makes it special compared to the brown cardboard of a certain online behemoth. Ribbons; tissue paper; gorgeous boxes – create some theatre around your offering. This works brilliantly for jewellery, accessories, decorative homewares, high-end stationery etc
7 – “How to” videos
The possibilities here are endless. If you sell books: pick a cookery or craft title and make one of the recipes or projects inside. It doesn’t matter how it turns out – in fact a total disaster might get more engagement! This works well for kitchen accessory stores and craft shops too. What can customers make with your products?
If you’re a clothing store, then pull together a series of outfits showcasing a couple of key pieces to be worn in different ways. Look at accessories too – channel your inner QVC presenter and really sell the features and benefits of your bags, watches and sunglasses.
8 – Go behind the scenes
Where are you located? Why did you choose there? Are you based in a photogenic market town? Or a busy tourist destination? Are there local visitor events that you can feature in your posts? If not, there’s plenty of scope for items about pulling together seasonal stock displays. Or unpacking a huge delivery of new stock. Or new technology arriving – especially if it improves the customer experience.
And if all else fails (especially if you’re in the UK) the British weather is a huge source of inspiration.
9 – Staff spotlight
Get the people who work for you in front of the camera. Are they just as passionate about retail as you are? (Yes, I hope!) Ask them to talk about their favourite stock item – why do they love it? If they’re comfortable talking about themselves then maybe do a ‘day-in-the-life’ post about their working day?
10 – Supplier focus
Why not interview one of the makers who supplies your store about what inspires them? Or show them making your products. If you’re a clothing boutique, how about a behind-the-scenes tour of one of your buying trips? Think about the people who make what you sell – do they have a great story to tell?
So there you have it – 10 easy content ideas for retail boutique owners to use on Facebook and Instagram. If you found these useful why not sign up for my free newsletter for more help and advice on marketing; specifically for businesses like yours.