“DO NOT ENTER” sign needed for Social Media program

Back at it after a few days off…

As I took some personal days with my family, I was able to enjoy time away from work and simply being a consumer. It was a nice (and recommended) respite from analyzing and critiquing companies and businesses…

…for about 27 minutes. ;-)

Kidding aside, as I was in ‘observation mode’, it struck me that a fundamental mistake companies seem to make is to let their marketing/sales departments run their social media campaigns.

Think about the guiding fundamentals for a Marketing department (staying on message, ‘brand brand brand’, etc). Now, think about everything that social media stands for (transparency, genuine conversation, no ‘bs’).

I don’t see this as a recipe for success.

If a company is serious about its Social Media campaign, then it should put its Customer Service Department in charge. They are more adept to speaking in a natural tone, will be better received, and won’t trip as many ‘BS Radars’.

I’d love your thoughts.

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“Email Blasts” are “anti-Social”

I received an “Email Blast!” (funny how they have evolved from cutting edge marketing to soooooo yesterday…and ineffective) yesterday from a golf course I recently played.

On the “EMAIL BLAST!”, they listed their rates and said to ‘come out and play’.  It had been over a week since I played, but I didn’t notice anything different in their rates, so I checked out their site to confirm my suspicion.  Viola…nothing different.

Not only was the email a waste of my time to wait for it to download on my mobile device, it was an insult (what, I don’t know how much I paid?), and it was anti-social (they didn’t ask me a question, therefore I have nothing to say to them).

Yes, I get it.  You want me to come play your course. You wouldn’t be able to meet payroll or pay for all the mowing equipment if you didn’t have revenues from greens fees.  Yet instead of the pricey/time consuming effort of generating an “EMAIL BLAST!!!” (not to mention the cluttering of my inbox), why not engage in conversation with me on Facebook/Twitter?  You want me to think of you for my next round of golf?  Here are some post/tweet ideas:

“What do you think is the easiest hole on our course?”

“If you could only play 17 holes today, which hole would you want to skip?”

“Do you have a standing bet with your buddies, or does it change each round?”

If your goal is to be on the top of the list of courses I want to play, then be the one that converses with me…and not AT me.

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Flaunt Your Mistakes

It goes against the instinct of anyone that wants to succeed in a professional/business setting, or that wants to be liked/respected in our personal lives.

What is “it”?  Failing and making mistakes are “it”.

As a specific example, I can’t think of any restaurant that would prefer to give a customer a poor dining experience.  A confluence of poor service and bad food would make for quite the angry customer…and said person might cause a bit of a scene in front of 20-50 other diners.  Worse yet, there is a very good possibility they will post their opinion on Facebook and/or Twitter.

My opinion? You better HOPE they post it on Facebook…because that is your only chance to show the world your willingness to get it right.

There are far too many companies that will ‘cleanse’ their wall of any negative comments by customers.  To do this is to not comprehend the ‘power of community’, and how it can help you in even the worst of situations.  My mantra will always be “don’t type/post it if you wouldn’t say it” applies here, albeit in a different sense.  To take down or ignore a negative post is no different than ignoring a complaint given in person.  You wouldn’t dare do it in person…why do it online?

Worse yet, you are missing out on the chance to broadcast to the world your customer service capabilities…and better yet…you’ll notice MANY of your ‘fans’ sticking up for you.  By keeping ALL posts on your wall, you’ll at the very least show your fans you care enough about their voice, you’ll definitely strengthen the loyalty of your existing fan base, and you’ll probably win back a potential fan.

If you take down the post, none of the above is possible.  Are you going to let your pride get in the way of success? Its your call!

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Humor On Web As Fast As News

It is safe to say social media was the best source of info for the death of UBL…a truly historical moment for Twitter, Facebook, et al.

With my curiosity of the events, I did a Google Maps search of the area, and stumbled across the golf course near his ‘mansion’.  Being a golfer, I clicked on the golf course reviews…enjoy.

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51 Hours and Counting…

A 'fan' takes the time to tell the world how much she loves an item they serve, and the restaurant doesn't publicly say 'thanks!', or 'we'll send a cake to Washington!', or anything! As of press time of this blog (7:57am, 4/21), still no response. 51+ hours later...oh, this gets better: the owner of this restaurant SAT ON A PANEL recently on how to use Facebook for your business. When I contacted them about offering them help, I was told "she's an expert, this is her thing". Ugh.

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Schools and Social Media

http://bit.ly/dR04gB with funding tight, schools need to embrace social media as a cost saver

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Conference encourages business to get social – http://bit.ly/hbqm6m This is the key, no? Integrate it, don’t change message

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