When we talk about Social Media, there are about as many opinions on what it is as there are people to express them. We know about Facebook ads, and Twitter, and LinkedIn and all the thousand others. But what is the bottom line?
It’s People connecting with People. It’s taking your story and bringing it to your own specific audience in an up front personal way.
In the old days, before instant messages, if you had a problem with your brand, you may go on for years before word really spread that you weren’t that hot. The slide down would go on and maybe not get noticed by your customers for quite some time. Maybe it would not be noticed by you until it was too late and the damage was done.
As I heard Gary Vaynerchuk say in a keynote address in Las Vegas a few years ago, “Before, if you were a restaurant, you could get away with having some cockroaches in your kitchen. Today some minimum wage employee is snapping pictures of the cockroaches and putting them on Twitter for the whole world to see.” You have to run a clean ship. When those cockroaches appear on Twitter, the smart thing to do is address it that day, as soon as it leaks out.
People that are loyal to your brand respect you for that. Fro meeting things head on.
But what about us little guys? Us guys trying to make our own dent in business? Social Media is the new gate keeper.
The best example is to look at some rising entertainers and see how they utilize SM to engaged their audience.
In Bayern Germany, there is a budding young teenage singer, name Jenifer Brening. Jenifer is 17 this year and she is an amazing young lady. She has the voice that captivates, the beauty that enthralls, and an energetic stage presence that keeps audiences engaged. Inside Germany, it is natural that she would be a budding talent with a very bright future. But what about the rest of us, the rest of the whole world. In the old days, we might never have been made acquainted with Jenifer.
With social media, Jenifer is reaching audiences around the world and making fans in every country. Beyond the talent what is Jenifer’s secret? Simply put, it’s engagement. Whether by shrewdness or simply instinct Jenifer interacts with her fans. Whether on Twitter, Facebook, or Instagram, if you comment on Jenifer’s posts she will acknowledge your effort with a Like, a comment, or a share. That’s powerful.
What does that do? It makes you feel special. There is something about the people you admire stopping their busy day to interact with you. It builds intense loyalty to a person and to their brand. It doesn’t matter if it’s an entertainer or the president of Pepsi. People do not easy forget when they have been acknowledged.
Try to remember, you can have all the cool Social Media bases covered. You have a Facebook page, a Twitter account, a LinkedIn profile. So what? Are you using them to connect with the people who spend money with you. Do you become transparent and personal. It’s the key.