The world of commerce is changing. The pandemic economy and the chaos of the 2020s shift to online purchasing has made it more difficult than ever for businesses in our society, but commerce isn't going anywhere anytime soon.
Digital Commerce 360 estimates that US consumers spent a whopping $861 billion with merchants this year- an incredible 44% increase from last year alone! That's the highest annual U.S. ecommerce growth in at least twenty years. It's also nearly triple the 15.1% jump in 2019.
The pandemic restrictions forced brands to pivot from traditional marketing tactics. Enter the merge of social media and ecommerce. That is the very meaning of social commerce. Social media has unequivocally become the lifeblood of every brand’s marketing strategy.
John Lawson, the best-selling author and authority on social commerce predicts that after 2020 even more of our buying behavior will be influenced by what we see in social platforms.
What was expected to take 3-5 years for mainstream adoption of social commerce happened in a single year.
The predictions John laid out in his pivotal book, "Kick Ass Social Commerce for Eprenuers." are starting to come true.
Lawson predicted the inevitable shift of major brands turning to social commerce and influencers. In it, John writes, “today’s online consumer is looking for opinions instead of facts….people online are using social media to gather opinions even when they are deprived of facts.”
Social commerce has the potential to afford the engagement of audiences garnered around specific demographics, likes and commonality and create community affinity over brands and products they use.
Swisspers, a U.S. Cotton brand, encouraged beauty bloggers and their followers to post “naked” (makeup-free) selfies as part of their “Sleep Naked” sweepstakes.
Before that campaign many celebrities like Taylor Swift and Drew Barrymore had already posted photos of the same. Swisspers capitalized on the movement and could leverage that momentum and create their campaign without having to affiliate with the celebrities by simply targeting the audience that was familiar with the movement.
“With social commerce you simply need to be listening to what is happening organically and piggyback on trends that are existent in social media to sell product and garner brand affinity,” says Lawson.
If you are not already familiar with social commerce, 2021 is the year for your business to get into the waters. This is the future and the future is right now.
Social signals around your brand, products and the people who are your consumers are creating the conversation. You do not need to control the conversation, you just need to be a party to it.
Find what is on trend in the community and put your company spin on it with marketing. Have a clear call to action and get the community to engage with you. That is the power of social commerce to keep your brand timely and authentic as opposed to cheesy or passé.