When a person inquires about your apparel decorating services they probably want to see examples of your work. Most people want to see the quality and creativity behind a business and product like yours. Direct-to-garment printing and embroidery is a visual business which is why image sharing via social media could become your new best friend; because like your business, we are visual beings. Any form of visual content also brands your company and the more branding and content you have out in the social space that you control, the better.
Here are some tips and sites for online image sharing through social media:
- 1. Check the quality of your images before you upload them. Only use sharp, detailed pictures. If possible, use a professional photographer. A bad picture of great work is actually worse than no pictures at all.
- 2. Fill out title, description and keywords if applicable.
- 3. Link back to your website where possible.
- 4. Build a community around the different platforms.
- 5. Get creative with what you post.
- Facebook - Share your images on your Facebook business page.
- Instagram - One of the fastest growing social networks and still more popular among younger demographics. You must use the mobile app as there is no way of posting from desktop.
- Pinterest - Very popular social network, you should add images on your website and add them to Pinterest using the 'Pin It' button.
- Tumblr - A very visual form of blogging (also known as social blogging, but that's for another blog post)
- FlickR - Image sharing that also allows for crowdsourcing through groups.
Tips on setting up these sites:
- Use the same name used on other platforms
- Link to your other profiles via your website or your blog
- Link back to your website or blog from the platforms created
Ideas for Success - Embroidery and Direct-to-Garment Businesses
There is a difference between being on social media, and actually making it meaningful. It comes down to having a little bit of knowledge of the platforms and having a strategy. You should only post things that you might be interested in seeing (putting yourself in your customers shoes). The key measurement of success is if you have people engaging with your content (liking, re-tweeting, sharing, commenting, messaging, tagging friends). Here are some ideas to help you manage and grow these networks successfully:
- When you work with another business that is on a certain social network you should tag them in the post, so they are notified. This way they will be much more likely to share it on their wall, which means word of mouth advertising for you.
- Share stories that are worth sharing about your business and clients. For example, if you create shirts for a fundraising event talk about how much fun it was to work with the decidated organizers and that you look forward to attending the event (if all that is true).
- If you do something for free/ for donation share that! Obviously don't word it so it seems like you are talking about yourself, but instead explain that it was a pleasure supporting such a worthy cause. You will be sharing some of the stuff that makes you a good business and give the organization some awareness. Win-win!
- Play with social media paid advertising, such as Facebook Ads. You can often get good bang for your buck here.
- Create custom t-shirts for local or larger current events, or just cool custom designs. Share these on social media to jump on hot topics (try to be funny).
- Run contests. There could be a number of different contests that you could run to promote your business, so try and be creative. a few things to remember are: create a plan, make sure it's targeted, and promote it (not just on social media).