Don’t Let the Robots Run Your Business
August 14, 2013 | By Dennis Yu | 3 Comments">3 Comments
A robot can’t manage your Facebook page, choose the right apps, or even make recommendations on what you should do next.
Yet you’ll hear outrageous claims that:
- Social media data (big data) can predict the future (or at least how summer blockbuster movies will perform).
- You can get 10,000 fans without lifting a finger (as if loyal customers can be bought in bulk like potato chips).
- You can use a secret Konami code sequence to automatically show up in the news feed.
- A Facebook contest app will drive automatic revenue, allowing you to ride into the sunset on your white horse.
Just as with weight loss scams, the fundamentals never change.
You have to eat right, sleep, and exercise. Likewise, you have to focus on delighting your customers, then getting them to share the love with other potential customers.
Delivering a great product or service has nothing to do with HTML5, EdgeRank, mobile responsive design, or any tools/technology/product.
But there are two things that tools and vendors can do to simplify your hectic life:
1) Produce amazing content:
- Gather customer testimonials to place on your website, Facebook page, twitter, or whatever.
- Tell your story through their experiences or better, make it easy for them to do it by having social plug-ins on your site.
- Encouraging them to leave a review on Yelp, guest blogging on industry sites (like what I’m doing here).
- Creating simple videos interviewing your customers on issues that matter to them (not shill your product).
2) Amplify that goodness (word of mouth):
- Run Facebook sponsored stories so that when someone checks in to your store, likes your post, RSVPs for your event, or claims your offer, their friends automatically see it.
- Use a Heyo contest app to create incentives for people to talk about your product and your content.
- Run Google remarketing and Facebook retargeting campaigns to reach folks who left your website.
But I don’t have time to write content
I’m not good in front of a camera, or my industry is not interesting, you say. My favorite cheat is to ask 5 people for their opinion on a topic. Assemble these, add a picture, and you’ve got a blog post! Take what Chris Smith of socialcommerceinstitute.org had to say about writing good content:
You don’t have time NOT to write content. It isn’t just about writing content. It’s still true today that content is king. However, in this new world of marketing you must produce great content if you want to stand out. What constitutes great content? Content that truly serves the needs and interests of your customers in a deep, meaningful and personalized way is great content. This is easier said than done but don’t complicate the process. What is the greatest, most authentic content that any of us could create? The story of our customers. Involve your customers stories in your content creation process.
But I don’t have money to run ads
I haven’t seen the ROI, we don’t have anyone who has time to run ads. This is not about a massive TV ad campaign. This is $5 a day to make sure you’re showing up in the Facebook newsfeed. You can do it in 60 minutes and even hire an intern to follow these steps for you.
Facebook success is about optimizing your content and then amplifying it– that is what drives traffic and sales. Anything else is just squandering your time.
Tiger Woods with a rusty 5 iron from Goodwill could beat me in golf, even with the fanciest of clubs. It’s less about the tools and more about how effectively you use them.
I happen to think Heyo has the easiest to use Facebook tools. But more important is whether you can use them to produce more content and amplification. They have the best support I’ve seen from all the tool vendors. If you’re reading this, you already know. And they’re not paying me to say this.
We ran a contest app for Girlfriend Life last week that drove over 400 registrations. Great app from Heyo, great technical execution, but more importantly, we had great content and a great audience to share it with (a list of 26,000 people).
Are the robots and tools making your business decisions? Only you can produce and build your raving customer base, then letting the tools assist you vs hold you hostage.