On Wednesday, MPs overwhelmingly backing Theresa May to formally begin Brexit in a historic House of Commons vote. Now that the dust has settled I thought I would take a look at what action marketers and small business owners can take to make the most of social media as we approach Brexit.
This post is specifically aimed at UK businesses, although some of the ideas and tips suggested could also help businesses wherever they are located.
Social media plays a significant part in the marketing and customer services functions within a company which in turn support the overall business strategy. With so many economic and political uncertainties, it’s important that you have a much stability within your business as possible so planning is vital. Marketing and customer services are the foundations of any business, so make sure that you have a marketing and customer services strategy in place and that social media is part of that. A stand alone social media strategy could be useful and that’s something that I can help with.
If you’re selling to customers abroad then the recent currency movements have been in your favour, but if you are paying for goods and services in foreign currency then your costs have increased. Here are some ideas on reducing those costs, avoiding exchange rate fluctuations and conversion costs. If your bank is like mine you’ll pay a charge every time you make a purchase in a foreign currency.
If you’re advertising on social networks like Facebook, Twitter and LinkedIn you may well be paying for your ads in US dollars, so get in touch with the relevant social network and change it to British pounds. My Twitter Ads account was in US dollars and I contacted Twitter to get this changed to British pounds. It turns out I needed a separate account but I’m now longer subject to exchange rate exchange costs and fluctuations.
There are also many online tools and services used for digital marketing and social media that charge in dollars. It’s worth finding out if payment in British pounds is an option or switching to a UK based service. For example, a great alternative to US based survey tool Survey Monkey is Gloucestershire based SmartSurvey (aff link) who boast the BBC and NHS amongst their clients.
If you are using tools and utilities like Mailchimp, Buffer and Dropbox, your overall costs have gone up so look for UK alternatives. Likewise, the many small businesses who use Amazon Web Services (AWS) for web hosting and cloud storage have seen their costs increase.
The currency exchange rates change all the time so whilst costs have increased, this might not be the case in the medium term but the rates and your associated costs are certainly worth keeping an eye on.
In summary, social media can help increase your sales and improve your customer services post-Brexit so keep calm and carry on posting and tweeting!