The Role of Social Media

Last week I spoke at the SMAC conference about the role of social media in your business. Social Media is nothing more than a collection of tools you can harness for your business. While some make social media the crux of their business – most have choices. The questions I posed are:

  • What are your business goals of social media going to be?
  • Where are you going to focus your time?
  • Are you actively moving your audience with you?

The Business Goals of Social Media

No matter what kind of industry you’re in, your customers’ satisfaction should be your goal. Their path and road map should determine what becomes important to you.  Even if you’re just the pest guy killing bugs around the foundation, your customers have goals to which you can contribute.

While it may just seem like a pest control company is providing a bug-free dwelling, they really have a larger role for a homeowner. Homeowners want their dwellings to look good, be admired, provide safe living, bring adequate resale and be a source of joy for the family. The pest control company is part of that goal.

While it would make sense to talk about your services on your website and social media, you also want to provide engaging content that is of value to the homeowner. Even if you don’t offer other products and services, you can be a major resource for your customer and their needs.
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Ladder of Value – Make your Audience Smarter

Take the Pest Control Company for example. They make just be spraying the foundations of their clients’ homes – but they have the knowledge to help homeowners in many ways:

Homeowners put playgrounds in their backyards. What kinds of advice can they provide as it pertains to termites and wood structures in the ground?

Homeowners often plant gardens as well. What kinds of things can they do to stop moles from destroying them? What about the role of ladybugs, aphids and grubs?

How about providing info about mosquitos and standing water, wood mulch vs bark, screens to prevent wasp nests, spider identification, and even the ramifications of poor drainage around the house.


Help that homeowner achieve their dreams and goals by being the expert and leveraging your knowledge to help them. The same can be said for every product in every industry.

If you don’t think that applies to you, could you ever see yourself providing a newsletter or monthly magazine? Just think about the topics you’d include. If you need inspiration, check out this magazine the local Electric Company puts out. They do all that knowing the only competition they have is your local Amish Recruiting Office.


Where do you spend your time?

The question of where is largely dependent on your customers as well. While you can find ample reasons to be on Facebook, does it ultimately serve your customers the way you need it to?

If you feel you can’t avoid centering your audience on Facebook, what other tools can you use to both attract new clients and ultimately serve the ones you have?

Boeing, for example, does a great deal in social media. But they’ve decided that while Facebook is great, their fans want photos of planes. Beoing provides that on Flickr and then drives them to their website for free “wallpapers” and “backgrounds”. So Boeing has chosen Twitter and Flickr to center their audience. And their fans love it.

Nordstroms, HGTV, Wedding Republic and West Elm, on the other hand, have recently found Pinterest to be a fantastic place to share their products and others with a ravenous audience. Like Facebook, comments and networking are part of this new Giant. And similar to Boeing, both Flickr and Pinterest are sites whose content can be easily shared with their Facebook audience.

While Facebook is still the Juggernaut, don’t leave the other sites behind in an attempt to focus your energy. If you do a slide presentation, load it up to so it can be harnessed by the crowds using that service. Then embed the slideshow into your Facebook community.

Don’t neglect YouTube, Flickr, Twitter, Hubpages, Squidoo, Stumbleupon or iTunes either. They all have attributes you can use to serve your audience and move them forward toward their goals. AND while you produce content there, you can always then share it with your fans on Facebook. (It’s only one click away).

Moving your audience with you

No matter how interested your audience is in achieving their goals, “shiny button syndrome” is alive for everyone. Your customer may have really enjoyed your last blog post – but will they come back?

The best that you can do is to be a good friend, good vendor, good mentor and honest steward. If you’re hoping that your great content will bring them back, you’re falling into the trap – because

Hope is not a Marketing Plan (t-shirts in the sidebar)

You can stack the odds in your favor AND invite them back!

ABC’s The Bachelor knows that it competes with other reality TV shows, cable, internet, football, local soccer games and about 100 other things. But they do a little something to make sure that you’re either going to watch the Bachelorette next season.

Their dirty little secret: they sell you next season while you’re watching this one! They edit the show so you fall in love with next season’s The Bachelorette before they even announce she’s going to The Bachelorette. Crazy strategy, eh? You need to adopt that kind of  a strategy in your business.

When you foretell what’s coming, making sure that what’s coming is something they want, need and must learn. that way, you’ll quickly move your audience from one idea to the next. That growth they experience will be appreciated and rewarded.

To learn more about doing that yourself, I encourage you to sign up for my Weekly Notes right there in the sidebar. Every Friday at 9 a.m. I give you information to make you better at what you do. Also, join us at where we discuss your social media questions AND EVEN create teleseminars to answer the juicy ones.

We look forward to seeing you there.