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Livestreaming: Part One


In this next series, we’ll cover everything you need to know about livestreaming. In Part One specifically, we’ll go over what livestreaming is and tips to increase engagement.

What is Livestreaming?

According to Wikipedia, livestreaming is media that is simultaneously recorded and broadcast in real time over the internet. Additionally, 80% of livestream viewers prefer to watch a livestream than read a social media or blog post.

So, why should you do it? Essentially, livestreaming is a great option to connect retailers to shoppers. Multiple social platforms have livestreaming capabilities and the popularity continues to grow. Since livestreams are shown in real time, you can get information out quickly, and the preparation doesn’t take much more than recording a normal video.

Tips to Increase Engagement

Check out these tips to help you increase engagement on your first livestream:

  • Offer a live Q&A: This incentivizes your viewers to come with questions ready and interact throughout the stream.
  • Promote: Promote early to get your followers excited and ready to tune in.
  • Look professional: Investing in a camera mount or tripod will go a long way!
  • Share the replay: Post the livestream on your social for anyone who missed out.
  • Ask for feedback: This is another option for two-sided engagement. Ask if your followers if they can hear you or if they want more information.
  • Send reminders: Create more excitement by posting frequent reminders the day of.
  • Offer a next step: Have a goal for the livestream. This can be to get more followers to your social platforms (or to your store too of course).

And speaking of real time engagement, don’t forget to register for our AQR Academy All Access Membership. By registering before next Tuesday, you can save $120 and have access to an entire year’s worth of networking and educational opportunities.

Inspiration for this post came from “Connect Through Livestreaming” by Sommer Leigh published in the December 2021 issue of American Quilt Retailer.

If you’re looking for more information to guide you in owning a retail business, subscribe to American Quilt Retailer today. Already a subscriber? No worries—join our Facebook group for insights and dialogue from industry specialists like you. And don’t forget, you can always purchase single issues if you prefer that instead.

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Crafting Social Media Posts

Crafting social content

Social media may be time intensive but everyday it’s becoming a more essential piece of business. Check out these tips to make the process easier (and boost your sales along the way).

Writing Social Captions

Instagram allows up to 2,200 characters, but not all text will appear when customers are scrolling. An option to “read more” will appear they can click on, so make sure your most important information is at the beginning.

Also consider adding hashtags to your caption. Hashtags make it easier for new customers to view your post. Hashtags can go at the end of the caption, or in the first comment of your post.

Instagram also allows up to 30 hashtags. You don’t have to use that much, but a combination of specific and general hashtags will optimize your post for the most views.

What to Post

There’s a variety of content you can post. We separated the topics into three categories:

  • Excitement: This post is perfect for promoting events. Make sure your caption stresses why they should come, and what makes the event unique.
  • Engagement: Think of this post as having a conversation with your audience. I’m sure you’ve heard of algorithms, but what you need to know about Instagram’s algorithm is the more engagement your post has, the more your followers will see it in their feeds. You can boost engagement by liking and responding to comments.
  • Selling: Have a new product? Tag the company in your post and write a call to action in your caption such as “click the link in the bio to buy this today.”

What are you waiting for? There’s no time like the present to step up your social media game. Put your best social media foot forward with these Instagram tips.

Inspiration for this post came from IG 1, 2, 3 by Kate Colleran, Joanne Hillestad, and Kris Poor published in the February 2020 issue of American Quilt Retailer.

If you’re looking for more information to guide you in owning a retail business, subscribe to American Quilt Retailer today. Already a subscriber? No worries—join our Facebook group for insights and dialogue from industry specialists like you.

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How to Grow Your Email List

Email blastEmail blasts are one of the most insightful forms of digital marketing. The statistics that free sites, like MailChimp and Constant Contact, provide open up a world of ideas for how to get your ideas out there fast.

Check out these tips to learn how you can grow your email list with quality customers.

  1. Leave a sign-up sheet. You’d be surprised how many people will leave their information when you talk about everything your email blasts have to offer. Also print off your social media timeline so clients can get a sneak peak of your awesome feed and gain more followers that way too.
  2. Always carry your business card. Yup, this old trick really does work. Business cards provide a tangible way to recall discussions and act as a constant reminder of your business when left on a table or desk.
  3. Organize a giveaway. The giveaway can double as a sign up drive to reach goals you’ve set for yourself on how many more people you want to add. Keep track of the data during and after the giveaway to make sure the recruits you got are still engaging with your content.
  4. Connect through social media. Encourage people to sign up for your newsletter in the bio of your Instagram and Pinterest. Sprinkle a couple posts in your feed every now and then reminding people to sign up. And don’t forget to reverse the process; always include your social media handles in your email blasts.
  5. Don’t give up on bounce backs. That’s right, it’s okay to be pesky. Sometimes reaching out can help troubleshoot, or provide more insight on what your customers want to see. The more you tailor your content to what your customers want, the more excited they will be when they see your notification come through.

Have other tips for what’s worked for you? We’d love to hear them! Comment or start a discussion in our Facebook page about how you’ve grown your online following.

If you’re looking for more information to guide you in owning a retail business, subscribe to American Quilt Retailer today. Already a subscriber? No worries—join our Facebook group for insights and dialogue from industry specialists like you.