10 simple things can you do right now to convince your followers to become customers.

September 4, 2021 10 simple things can you do right now to convince your followers to become customers.

By Freddie Ngunju.

Social media is by far the best way for your small Kenyan business to connect and engage on a personal level with both current and potential customers. 

Social media can literally help your business grow and it is now more important than ever. Don’t believe me?

74% of customers rely on social media to guide their purchasing decisions.  60% of people have increased their social media use since the beginning of the COVID-19 pandemic, and 86% expect to maintain their current level of use.

However, you need more than just a social media presence to grow your business. For social media to work, you need a solid strategy that has been well executed. By having an overall strategy and using specific types of posts to reach your goals, social media can be a cornerstone of your marketing.

Every single social media post that you make should have a goal and purpose that ties back to your overall brand strategy. If this is not how you are running your social media, then you need to sit and create a proper social media strategy.

Although it is entirely possible to convert followers into buyers, you should know that the process can be gradual; especially for brand new small Kenyan businesses. The reality is that 50% of Instagrammers follow at least 1 business. However, only 5% of followers take action (like purchasing something) after being inspired by a social media post.

In this post, I’m going to list a few different measures that you can take to encourage your followers to buy from your brand.


Share behind-the-scenes posts.

I see a lot of business owners sharing a lot of product-based social media posts. But behind-the-scenes posts are what actually help potential customers feel connected to your brand.

When you share how you create a product or post how you package and deliver it, customers feel like they’re getting to know your company.

Apart from behind the scenes content, you can also share your day to day; what it actually takes to keep your business going. If you have employees, it is also a good idea to go ahead and feature them.

Share celebrations such as the anniversary of your opening or employee birthdays. Doing so allows you to build a rapport with your followers, which them makes it so much easier for them to become customers.

As many as 53% of customers say they are likely to buy from brands that are transparent on social media. 62% of social media users have said that they have become more interested in a brand or product after seeing it in Facebook and Instagram Stories.

When creating behind the scenes content for your small Kenyan business, try to make these types of videos as informal as possible. Something as simple as a reel or funny TikTok video showing how you package your product can help followers and customers engage with your business.

Behind-the-scenes- posts can also help you fill gaps in your content when you run out of ideas. Don’t forget to direct your followers back to your online shop, website or landing page from your social media post.

Example in action:

@luxehomedecorltd What design would you have done?🤎 #smallbusiness #smallbusinesstiktok #smallbusinessowner #foryou #foryoupage ♬ happier – Olivia Rodrigo

Behind-the-scenes content helps to humanize your brand. People buy from people- not from businesses.

Educate your followers.

Here is the biggest mistake I see small Kenyan businesses making on social media: they only create posts that talk directly about their product or service.

If you are only discussing the features of your products and constantly telling people what’s so great about them and why people should buy these products, you’ve been using social media all wrong.

What you need to be doing instead is creating posts that help customers see why they need your products and how they can get more use from those products. Show clearly how your followers’ lives will change once they use their products.

Show them what they’re missing out on and you should do this so well that it creates some type of FOMO (Fear of Missing Out) in your customers.

For example, a bakery can post pretty pictures of its cakes and desserts, which is nice, but it doesn’t really inspire any action from a follower that has some interest in becoming a customer.

But you know what will? An educative and information video on how to store your customers can store their cake properly so it can remain fresh for breakfast the following morning. Or how about how to set up an appealing cake table for the cutting ceremony?

These type of educational posts work because people don’t necessarily come on social media with the intention of buying things. They come to socialize and if they should see something they like; one might purchase it.

Apart from socializing, 54% of social browsers use social media to research products and services. Therefore, businesses that show customers how to get more value from their products/services can actually increase their sales by educating and teaching rather than selling directly to them.

So what types of posts are best for educating followers to customers? For Instagram, carousels are an excellent choice.

However, videos work best when you want to educate your followers and turn them into customers. Videos are easy to share on almost all platforms. That’s probably why 67% of customers consider video to be the most transparent type of social media posts.

The point here is to show the different ways in which people can use your products. Also share tips and tricks that they may not have thought of yet.

Example in action:

A wines and spirits business can create a short video showing customers easy ways to beat a hangover. Or 5 best foods to eat when you have a heavy night of drinking planned. This type of content helps potential customers realize that the wines and spirits business understands their challenges and can provide more value than simply buying a bottle of vodka.

These days people want to learn before they buy. They want to be educated instead of pitched.

Make your followers laugh/ Entertain them.

Small business owners make the mistake of being too serious and business like on social media. However, the truth is that 71% of customers watch videos on social media to laugh.

As such, when you use humor on social media, you can double your engagement with current customers and grow your follower count by creating posts that people can then share with their friends.

Something as simple as a meme is a simple and effective way for a small business like yours to create a sharable humorous post. Customers appreciate brands that show their human side.

Some businesses are shying away from using Tik Tok and Instagram Reels, which is a huge lost opportunity. Why? Many people other than Gen Z  are now on TikTok. People are also more likely to engage with your promotional video content and enjoy it than they are with your ‘buy now’ posts.

So Instagram reels are great for showcasing people using your products, as well as displaying how your product looks like in real life. If you are a small business owner that wants to attract the attention of their target customers, you should start using Reels and Tik Tok videos — for both education, promotional and comic relief purposes.

Example in action:

Fun video content attracts people and makes them stop & stay on your page. Social media algorithms love that & will reward you with more followers as a result.

Collect and share customer reviews.

There are many considerations that a customer makes before they buy anything for you. For instance, when deciding whether to buy something or not, some people will first ask their friends or colleagues for recommendations and then later, they will carry out their research to determine which options work best.

Most people, however, will simply start their research on Google on their own and then narrow down the various solutions available to them. When deciding between you and your competitors, customer reviews and testimonials are usually the biggest determining factors-especially for brand new shoppers.

Don’t believe it?

Research shows that 91% of online buyers regularly read and compare online reviews and 84% trust online reviews as much as/ if not more than personal recommendations from close friends and relatives. And when people read positive reviews, they make their decision very quickly.

So if you want your small Kenyan business to make more sales, then your customer reviews matter more than you think. But don’t wait around for customers to leave you reviews. If you don’t take the proactive approach, you’ll end up waiting forever.

It is important that you create and maintain a process that encourages your customers to leave reviews. Not only will creating a system help you receive more positive reviews, but it will also help you run your online business in Kenya better.

Example in action:

Your brand is what other people say about you when you’re not in the room!


Share promotional posts- but not too many.

80% of all your posts on social media should be used to educate, entertain, inspire, motivate or inform. The remaining 20% should be used to sell and promote your products or services on social media.

With 37% of customers saying that social media is one of their biggest sources of inspiration for purchasing, promotional posts should definitely be part of your social media strategy. These types of posts should only make up a small portion of your posts.

Whenever you create promotional posts, always give a reason for buyers to purchase the product now and not later. A great example could be to add a limited time discount. You can also prompt followers to buy from you buy sharing important information such as you only have 5 pieces in stock.

If you want to reduce friction from followers that are interested in making a purchase, always include a high quality image of the actual product in real life (not the stock photo or vendor photo you got from Alibaba), as well as the price information on the post.

Example in action:

Promotional posts are only bad if those are the only type of posts you’re sharing on social media. Keep in mind the 80/20 rule of content creation.

Leverage Kenyan influencers to inspire your followers to shop.

Influencer marketing works- it just does!

When sales are slow, one of the best things you can do is collaborate with influencers to encourage your followers to purchase your product or service.

Not only will influencers drive sales on your social media accounts, but since followers related to influencers easily and they value their opinions, collaborating with influencers helps to establish your brand equity.

To boost the sales that are generated by the influencer’s content, provide influencers with a discount code or promo link. If you plan on using several influencers to promote your products, make sure that you assign each one with a code or promo link so that you can track the number of followers they help you convert into customers.

Example in action:

People can’t buy from you if they don’t like you. But people like, know and trust influencers- that’s why they are so good at what they do!

Show your products in action.

If you want to make more sales on social media, you need to show your products in action. Even though good quality images of your products can and will help to grab your followers’ attention, photos alone may not always be sufficient enough to boost your sales.

For you to make followers stop and scroll, ensure that you showcase the experience of actually using your products. For instance, if you are selling fashion, you can showcase people, as well as your customers wearing the clothes you sell in different contexts and scenarios.

Include a well written caption that describes to your followers the experience of wearing your clothes. You can also use words that evoke the texture of the fabric, which makes it easier for people to envision wearing the clothes themselves.

Example in action:

If sell without selling was a social media post. This ☝🏽☝🏽☝🏽 would be it.

Share user generated content.

User generated content is word of mouth advertising- but online. User generated content is content that has been created by your existing customers showcasing your product or service. When you share user generated content, it helps to promote your product or service to new customers.

So how do you get your customers to share user generated content?

Since some customers may not be readily willing to share images of your product or service without a little encouragement, the best thing you can do to give them a little nudge is to offer a reward or incentive.

If you offer your customers a chance to win something for posting photos that feature your product and hashtag, they will be more inclined to share. As a rule of thumb, you should never share your followers’ content without their explicit permission.  You should always credit someone for their photo so that they can feel appreciated.

Example in action:

Doesn’t this just make you want to make an order? Happy customers is the best type of marketing.

Offer discounts and giveaways to your followers.

Giving your followers discounts and giveaways is easily one of the most effective ways to boost your Instagram sales. If you are looking for a way to promote your products and increase sales while also growing your social media following, this is a great tactic to use.

What makes discounts and giveaways so effective is that it helps you generate awareness for your products or services as customers and followers share news about your offer with their friends or followers. This will in turn help to boost your engagement rate on social media.

Example in action:

Yes please! Who can resist a good deal?

Stop being pushy or salesy.


Keep in mind that although social media can and will help to boost your sales, platforms such as Instagram and TikTok were not originally created for selling and buying. People come on social media not to buy from businesses but to socialize virtually.

So if you are too pushy and all you post are salesy posts- then you won’t have a lot of success on social media. If you want to sell on social media, you have to do it creatively with valuable, engaging content. That’s what I mean when I tell you to ‘sell without selling.’

For instance, rather than just post an image of an outfit you are selling, you should post pictures of people in the outfits you want to sell that have been inspired by real life situations. Something else you can do is share pictures of customers using your products or share tips on how people can effectively use your products. If you show them how your products are used, you won’t have to do a lot of convincing. People will just start to reach out to you naturally- it is up to you to close them or not.

Example in action:

Beautiful! Show…don’t tell.


So there you have it!

These tips will help you convince your followers to become customers so that you can increase your sales on social media.

So tell me; which of these tips will you try first? Comment below.

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