A lot of people have been talking about social media for quite a while now. You keep hearing about Twitter and LinkedIn. You may have your own Facebook account, and even browsed through Pinterest. You can see how some of it would be interesting. But still, is there anything in all of that stuff for your company? Can social media do anything for you and your customers? [Read more…]
Sales are built on trust and relationships. If we believe something does what we want and the price is right, we’ll buy it. On the other hand, if we don’t think the ingredients are safe or we just don’t believe it’s going to work, we won’t buy. And if we don’t like or trust the person selling it or representing it in a commercial, we almost certainly won’t buy. Trust is big.
To address this reality, companies often rely on trusted celebrities or word of mouth to increase sales. If we hear someone we trust say they like a product, we transfer our trust from that person to the product. A big company might be lying just to increase sales. But would Mom? The guy next door who knows cars inside out? Beyonce? No way they’d lie. We believe them, and we therefore believe in the products they recommend.
That’s where blogging and social media can come into play.
Like the rest of us, you probably hate to be blamed. For anything. If something goes wrong, you’re thinking “I didn’t do that!” That’s normal. But what’s easy to miss when there’s trouble is that it’s often best when it is your fault.
Whether it’s in your website design or making Christmas dinner, being at fault for big failures is of course no fun. Investors have nothing nice to say. Your kids pretend they don’t know you. For Sale signs appear on your neighbors’ lawn. Or yours. But if you really want to fix your problems rather than just avoid some blame, there’s nothing better than knowing that you’re the one at fault, because then you can figure out precisely what went wrong, and can better make the changes you need.
Let’s face some facts: [Read more…]
Whether you’ve ever thought of it or not, you’re a company. You compete to get people to choose you instead of someone else for almost everything in your life. Getting picked for the team. Dating. Scholarships. Jobs. Raises. Loan or mortgage approvals. Being a part of your teenaged children’s lives. Getting into an exclusive retirement home. How well you market yourself against your competitors will play a huge role in determining whether you win or lose in many areas of your life.
That can sound crass, and in fact it often is. But again, it’s part of being a business. Some companies choose to compete by genuinely caring for their clients and supporting their communities, while others compete aggressively with a “take no prisoners” bravado. You’ll need to determine which is ultimately the most satisfying and rewarding strategy for your life. I’m certainly confident I know which works best in mine.
Whichever you decide, like any company you will need to invest in the things that will improve your value, and you will get ahead by supplying others with what they need. You will nurture your assets – health, family, friends, finances, business relationships, reputation — and take care of them as best you can. You will produce goods or services — your time on the job, your volunteer activities, your relationships in and out of the workplace — and you will move ahead or fall back based upon how good your goods are seen to be. And like any company, you will succeed or fail based largely on the quality of your strategies and tactics in all these various areas.
Yet, amazingly, most of us never take the time to really develop or even consider a business plan or marketing strategy for our lives, or even recognize that we need one. [Read more…]
For many people, social media is still very much a mystery; a strange new world where the talk is all about building communities and sharing, yet you can’t help but feel frighteningly alone and bewildered as you try to figure out what you’re supposed to do. Everything is constantly changing. You were just starting to figure out Facebook and maybe even LinkedIn, but people always seem to be talking about some new platform. Lots of people have their own blog, but you were told that blogs were supposed to be dead by now. And although you may not admit it to everyone, Twitter still seems to be just a mix of being complicated and silly. Whom do I follow? How do I follow? Why do I follow? How do I get out of here?
If you feel like you just don’t get social media, let me let you in on a secret… [Read more…]