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Social media is one of the most effective marketing channels for being able to speak directly to customers. But because of how inexpensive social media is and because of the results that can be generated from these marketing efforts, the competition is fierce, so how do you stand out? When your followers are scrolling through their feeds, how do you make sure your posts get noticed?

Simply posting a photo of your product to your page isn't going to cut it nowadays. Where is the creativity in that? There are many ways you can go about promoting your products on social media, but lets cover some of the latest creative techniques that will help your products stand out and increase the chances of your followers actually wanting to stop and interact with your post:

Show Your Product In Action

Customers love seeing how a product can be used, especially when the content is coming from fellow customers, as it helps build trust in the abilities of your product. They will be much more inclined to make a purchasing decision when that advertisement is coming from a customer versus the brand itself. Encourage your customers to submit photos or videos demonstrating how they are using your product in real-life scenarios. Maybe even run a monthly contest or sweepstakes giving away a prize to a lucky entrant that month as a way to encourage customer entries, this way you have a consistent flow of user-generated content coming in that you can share across your social media channels.

In this example, GoPro is encouraging customers to submit photos showing how they are spending their summer, and as a result, they have amazing contest to share on their Facebook page that is going to have a significant impact on other customers, as it truly demonstrates what a GoPro camera can accomplish in a real-life scenario:

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Create Product Preference Posts

If you have multiple products that are related to each other, create an image with all of those products in it, and ask your followers which they prefer. This is a subtle way to get your followers thinking about your products, and if they are enthusiastic about them, you should get some solid engagement in the form of comments from customers going back and forth.

In this example, Xbox asked their followers which game they would be playing over the holiday, and the post was a huge success, with over 21,000 likes, 1,200 shares, and 5,000 comments!

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Demonstrate Multiple Ways To Use Your Product

Customers want to see more than one way your product can be used. This gives them more reason to go out and purchase your product, and then gives them creative ideas on how your product can be used moving forward, which will help build brand loyalty. One of the easiest ways to accomplish this is by creating videos demonstrating your product in use - the video can be recorded, or you can do a live video where you take customer questions for even more engagement. You may also want to ask your customers for submissions on how they have used your product (hint: another contest idea), and then turn that into a video.

In this example, Oreo is demonstrating how their cookies can be used to make an Oreo banana cream pie. You can tell by the engagement that their target audience is responding very well to the video, and Oreo is throwing out a creative use for their cookies.

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Run A Contest

Running a contest on social media is one of the most effective ways of promoting your product without actually advertising it. Sure, your product is front and center on the graphic for the contest as that's what you're giving away, but what you are really doing is creating excitement amongst your follower base and giving them a reason to engage with you. And in a subtle way, you are reminding them about your product and drawing attention to it at the same time, so it's a win-win scenario for everyone involved. You draw attention to your product, you get engagement on your social media page, and you energize your follower base and give them a chance to win a freebie. And at the same time, you are building brand loyalty by running the contest, which is something you should be doing on a consistent basis. 

In this example, Lou Taylor ran an Instagram contest giving away a product, and they extended the reach of their Instagram presence at the same time as entrants were required to share the post and use the required hashtag they supplied. Perfect example of a well-executed social media contest where everyone is benefiting!

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Behind The Scenes Videos

Your followers will love getting the ability to get a behind the scenes look into how a product is actually made. That intimate experience is something they would otherwise not have access to, so it makes them feel appreciated. And it's something that really involves no cost on your end - you can simply shoot it using a cell phone or GoPro camera and post it to YouTube, or even go live and take customer questions to increase the engagement you receive. Just think about how you feel when you get to be included in something exclusive - your followers will have the same feeling. This helps increase the positive sentiment surrounding your brand, promotes your product in a very subtle way, and boosts brand loyalty at the same time.

In this example, a video game company gave an inside look into how "Overwatch, World of Warcraft" and other Blizzard video games are made, and the video was a huge success, with over 170,000 views and hundreds of comments!