I got an email last week, one that’s similar to many I get from dealers and dealership personnel. It was a perfect representation of why so many dealers and other business are failing to find success on Social Media:
We are struggling with our Social Media. Our Facebook pages can’t seem to get any traction. We heard that blogging is good but we’re not sure how to start. How would you suggest with move forward? Are there any books we could read? Any help would be greatly appreciated! Thanks, Kevin (name changed)
Coincidentally last week, Marcus Sheridan wrote a great blog post about the time suck that is learning about Social Media and blogging. He shares a similar story to mine of someone reaching out to him and asking which way to go. Marcus and I share the same passion for Social marketing and we both are proponents of jumping in and swimming your way to success. My advice to Kevin, and every other dealer who has apprehension is, plan your path and start your journey…now!
Most people do everything in their power to move away from failure not knowing that failure is the half-way mark on the road to success. It’s not a destination to be avoided–it’s a stepping stone to get you where you really want to go. Most people get to the sign that says “Failure” and they figure they’re heading in the wrong direction so they turn around and go back. Success is not back that other way, it’s straight ahead!
“We tried Facebook and it doesn’t work.”
I can’t tell you how many times I’ve heard that phrase. Remember, just because you tried it and gave up, does not mean it won’t work if you get back in the game and do it right! I have clients who were failing and they’re now so happy that they didn’t give up because they are succeeding with Social Media.
The Social Media ecosystem evolves everyday. It does take time, effort, attention and a budget, which is why I advocate designating a person in your store to be your Social Community Manager. If your designate has limited experience with Social marketing then it’s also imperative to set yourself up for success by hiring a Social marketing coach. This will help you “grow your own”. You’ll get assistance with navigating the platforms and they’ll help you create content your customers will appreciate and share. Try things. Define what success looks like to you (Hint: it’s not 1000’s of fans on Facebook). Your customer will show you what they want from you. Help them buy from you. Fail until you succeed.
The only reason people go to Facebook is to waste time. Yeah, I’m being a little over-dramatic but it’s true! They say, “I have some time, I don’t know what to do with it so I’ll go to Facebook to see what my friends and brands are doing.” You need to say, “If you have time to waste, waste time with our brand. Here’s a cool video and some interesting information…what’s up?”
Check out the awesome job Red Bull does. With 26 million Facebook fans, it’s clear they know everything about their fans and what they like to see. Red Bull’s great content marketing is beautifully integrated into the context of Facebook. They didn’t get there on their first try so take a page from the Red Bull play book and adapt these principles to your own strategy.
Failing and becoming a failure are two very different things. Successful people fail eagerly while failures avoid failing. Set yourself up with a good foundation: grow your own promising Community Manager and work with someone who knows Social marketing. Take risks, try new things and soon you’ll know what Social Media success looks like because it will be your store!