Many small businesses hear the promising things that social media can do for the business. It makes you more visible, it brings in more customers, it is a low cost way to reach others – and all of these things are true. So why do so many businesses fail with their attempts at using social media for promotion?
Many times it falls into five main areas.
Fail to engage. The big bonus of social media is it’s social. You can’t just put an advertisement out and wait for the phone to ring. Talk to people not at people. This isn’t a platform to spell out what your company does better – it’s a chance to show that your company does more.
Fail to consider people are selfish. The me attitude exists. Increasingly, people don’t care what your new product or service is. They don’t care that it’s a great deal. They want to know what does it do for me. If I need to bring in an extra $2,000 this week for business expenses the people out there really do not care. What does your business do for them? How does it make their life easier, better, more carefree or save them time or effort or money? Sell the lifestyle – connect with them.
Fail to use the right person. The list of bad examples are many. Young people coming up through school have grown up with social media so are presumed to have experience, but more people all the time ponder what happened to customer service. People who are rude, abrupt, make bad jokes, insult others or don’t think before posting are bad choices to have in your social media program. Word will get around alright – but it won’t be good!
Fail to give it time. This isn’t something that will work for this week. It may take longer than a month. When people connect and engage and trust you then you’re on the road to making social media work for you! This does work, but it does take time.
Fail to understand selling is not engaging. How is their day? How do they use your product or service? What things do they like to do? Who is your target customer? People are bombarded by sales and empty promises in their email spam box all the time. Don’t be that business. You’re selling grills? Don’t! Give the recipes, the grilling tips, the outdoor barbecue tips. When someone wants a grill guess who comes to mind? A bonus – you’re the cool company that never pushes them to buy.
Social media can be an asset for businesses of all types. Heed the five points. Make it social, make it engaging and talk to people. Give it a half hour per day with the right people and attitude. You’ll be surprised what you can do!