As LBM dealers continue to search out best practices for utilizing social media to their business’s advantage, many are looking to early adaptors who are experienced and willing to share to help others in the industry. This month, MJ Toops, digital marketing communications specialist at McCoy’s Building Supply offers insight into how her company leverages social media.
What social media platforms do you use?
We are on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, Pinterest, YouTube and LinkedIn.
Tell us how social media benefits McCoy’s.
Each platform reaches a slightly different group of people. Facebook is our biggest platform reaching both customers and store employees. Instagram is our newest platform and has a similar tone and reach as Facebook. Twitter reaches more professional builders and touches a bit more on local community involvement. Plus, Chip Gaines follows us on Twitter so occasionally we get some great interactions from fans of his show, “Fixer-Upper.” Because McCoy’s sells a lot of the materials that are used in projects posted on Pinterest, there I work to reach people who are DIYers. YouTube is also aimed at DIYers while LinkedIn is similar to Twitter in showing off the professional side of McCoy’s.
Of the social media platforms that McCoy’s uses, do any pose special challenges?
We’re pretty active on all the platforms that we use but there are also challenges to all of them. Twitter is tricky because information there moves so quickly. It takes extra work to stay on top of things and make certain that our account doesn’t get lost in a landslide of tweets.
Who handles social media posts and marketing at your company?
I do all of the official posts through our various social media platforms. Our advertising team creates branded posts that I use for holidays and ads while most of our other posts come from pictures curated from store employees and customers. Even though I’m the one who writes the posts and gets them out into the world, the pictures and content that I get from our stores is incredibly valuable. Store employees are our best brand ambassadors and they interact with our amazing customers every day. I love being able to share that with our followers.
How much time do you spend on social media each month?
It’s a huge part of my job so I spend about half my time on social media. It’s a balancing act of interacting with employees and customers online in the moment but also planning content to keep all the platforms engaging.
Do you buy ads on any social media platforms? If so, which ones?
Right now, we mainly run ads on Facebook and Instagram. These ads are usually tied into major promotions like a sales ad or a discount on a particular product brand. Facebook has great tools for geo-targeting so we can get very specific about who sees our ads.
Many of our readers are pro dealers selling primarily to contractors. How has social media helped you reach that audience?
I really like being able to highlight our customers whenever possible. So whether it’s a picture of a big load of lumber going out to jobsite or a picture of McCoy’s branded Tyvek on a home that’s being built, it’s exciting to show off all the great work that our customers do.
When geo-targeting ads on Facebook, we also target by interests. General sales ads go to a larger, DIY customer base but if we have a promotion for insulation or a rebate for screen doors, I might target that towards professional builders who would be making larger purchases.
What other advice do you have for dealers using social media?
No matter what platform someone chooses to use, it’s important to be authentic and to pace yourself. People don’t want to see the same post over and over. When it comes to the pace of things, I think it’s important to develop a social media calendar so you know what you’ve posted and when, which also helps avoid accidental repetition.