Why Your Social Efforts Are Failing

The Experience Economy
Some might call it the ADD or what have you done for me lately economy. Its why we spend $3 more for coffee at Starbucks.

Our prospective clients (and you and I are similar in this) have collective consumer ADD. It has been estimated that we get up to
5,000 + messages sent at us a day.

Those numbers have been debated but the real point that is not debatable is that advertising messages are everywhere. And has us all in a sensory overload of solicitation.

And lets not forget to mention the conspiratorial subliminal messages that we supposedly get and the barrage of priming and story messages put into our daily view.

Its like they know we are overwhelmed with the obvious billboards, TV, and radio ads. So let’s get the other more powerful part of our mind with a straight shot at our Sub C.

From a George Bush ad in 2004 against Al Gore

Bush V Gore ad with sbuliminal RATSThis was an intro to the word bureaucrats. Watch the video.

But I caught an interesting use of priming over the recent Super Bowl scandal whereby the Seattle Seahawk player Marshawn Lynch would not speak to the press. The was either a purposeful ruse or was leveraged at the last minute for an insurance commercial.
The “Interviews”

The Commercial

Update: Since the original publication this article, it turns out that Marshawn  just filed for a Trademark that “I’m just here so I don’t get fined” phrase.

Priming is a way to get pieces of your message into your audiences sub conscious awareness. I often do this in my social media. I once wrote a coaching story titled, “Beautiful Girl”.

As I researched the story about a heart wrenching loss and how a little girl told me everything would be OK. I posted about ten or fifteen posts all day around that theme. I think I posted everything from football coaching stuff to a clip from the movie of the same Title as mine. And even the Inxs tune.

Needless to say my readership of that article skyrocketed. Many will do this in the guise as news jacking. If there is a story on everyone’s mind, then you can piggyback that news or theme.

Is it Any Wonder Why It is So Hard to Connect With Our Audience?

So we are already hammered by the ads, so add into the internet time and social media. Facebook or Twitter seems about 5 messages per 5 seconds or 3 per thumb swipe on a smart phone. Don’t blink there went your cool post.

Our senses are bombarded with 11 MILLION BITS of INFO EVERY SECOND. 11 million!!! But the upper limit of our working memory is 5-9 chunks of info, which translates to 40-50 bits. That leaves 10,999,950 bits of info that need to be processed. – telesian.com

There are three rock solid ways to give your followers what they want and break them out of their ADD trance.

….How to be their Pied Piper
Pied Piper

1. Demonstrate-Make their lives a little better. So long as it matches their interest demographic and yours so what? Teach them something. I do not mind writing about football as many of my prospective clients enjoy the game. But I also publish more about coaching as a context to help kids. That widens my target to anyone who cares about kids. Even folks who do not like the game. But they like how I am helping kids and encouraging other adults to do the same.

2. Engage them-Are you guilty of just posting on your own wall or blog and expecting them to come to you? Build it and they will come kind of thing? In order for them to hangout with you, often you have to go hang out with them first in social media.

3. Congregate them- Even better than meeting them on their wall is to meet them in their group. Eventually making you able to become their pide piper. I know of some “gurus” who simply create their own group. Some ideologues and profiteers call this a tribe, community, herd, or cult.

Become a leader within that community and you will become Chief, Mayor, Herder, and or Guru. Their Pied Piper!

Identify the herd and go get ‘em.

I have received business more than once from writing commentary help in a group of closely knit people. The mistake most make and (thus they do not bother) is that the folks in the group most likely are not going to use you.

Especially a group centered around their own pain. It depends on the niche and group of course. They often are looking for a self help cure. It is more often than not the lurker who will contact you after seeing your great wisdom authored in a post’s commentary.

Residual Efforts

A Super Bowl hit is more than just YouTube views or Twitter tweets. The most successful ads, Jason Peterson, chief creative officer at Euro RSCG’s Chicago says, will not just be watched again online, but be reimagined. In other words, they’ll not only go viral—they’ll become Internet memes. Fast Company

Does your content have residual value? Also this kind of commenting tends to be evergreen. More easily found than your wall or even your website.

Of course anything you ever create that is really good should typically syndicate into other social circles and or your blog. Always repurpose your efforts. Like with the SuperBowl ads.

And as you do this over time you are able to call upon your own content. As an example, I was recently in a conversation with people on Facebook about door to door salesmen. I remembered a post I wrote about on my HouseBlogger.com blog in 2008. I linked them there.

I recently counseled a Realtor client to create interviews with local experts like financial advisers that we will syndicate through You Tube and other video sites as well as the normal social platforms. And of course on his blog we built for him.

This is evergreen and will forever be findable by future prospects when we set it up right.

Are you creating content? Do you need help doing it?

We are creating and assisting in content creation for our clients and marketing it via social media and traditional SEO marketing.

Social Media is About Being Social Which Means People

G+Social media is great. But if everyone is talking and nobody is listening then you are spending a wasted effort.

Make sure that you have followers of whatever content you are posting in the area of the platform that you are posting.

You can get more followers by:
1. Advertising. Do this wrong and you will have lots more likes and followers not in your target market.
2. We talked about this in the last post. Make sure to go off your walls and comment and talk with folks on their walls, and communities. Be helpful and a thought leader.

This is extremely important for instance if you post into Google Plus. It will be all for not if nobody is following you.

When folks are signed into Google and are circled with you. You most likely will show up on their Google search results. If you are not circled with them, then you will not show up on their main  results.

So go get more people in your target demographic circled!

What is Your Very Best Defense Against Bigger Websites?

I have been working hard of late putting together a series of posts and material around strategy for you. I have written about this before.

Key Points You Will Receive When You Read This Complete Article:

  • Your experiences and skills demonstrated in text, video, and audio, are the only unique content.
  • Tricks and gimmicks are nothing without strategy.
  • Your values guide everything.
  • Technology is fleeting as an advantage.
  • Demonstrating what data means is far more compelling than handing over the data for your prospects translation to meaning.
  • Failure to demonstrate is selfish to your market and will be eventually punished by Google and the social-sphere.

Much of this is not new, but only more crucial than ever for your survival.  Especially for mid size businesses down, who cannot afford mistakes.

So I recently came upon a Facebook post by long time friend Barry Cunningham, a social media maven. And he wrote in a Realty Group about the Real Estate site  Zillow running un-targeted ads in Facebook. And that is everyone’s opportunity to own their market.

After much commentary amongst the members, I chimed in with this reply. His thread was a perfect opportunity to write this out for you. I edited it slightly for grammar and flow.

Barry ,amen on the not needing to know so many market statistics. We seek what we seek. And that stuff is easily found online. What we need is someone to tell us what all this crap means. I think you have brushed on this before. But there is no new content.

Unless you just cured cancer there is nothing new that you do. You are a commodity. And the more you try and talk about superior technology the faster it will commoditize.

As yesterdays technology is today’s homework assignment.

Google hates it . Yet we try to do the very least minimal dosage. But that is ok until it isn’t.

Back in the day, we hammered high PR links from old sites . Top ten in Google in 30 days or its free. I actually sold that. But you cannot get away with that manipulation anymore. the links are harder and they get sandboxed (well done Google, well done;-) And content on site or on social is no different.

Technology is not a USP

 The only truly unique content is you and your opinions.

There is a reason everyone here has lasted the test of time in our respective businesses. Yet, many are afraid, or have not considered what makes them last.

The reason is you are not Vanilla. You are Neapolitan and have answers for every nuance in your business. But yet you do not share it. You do not demonstrate it. That is sort of selfish.

And selfish is not rewarded in a commoditized marketplace.
Especially for the 1 or 2 (wo)man army business.

So when you slap me with some meaningless number seemingly dished out from Econ class.  My eyes glaze over.

However, when you say the x went up y points. (here is the kicker which makes you win) “and what that means to you Tim is blah blah blah”. You win. Because I can careless about a cute report. What I care about is me. Just like that’s all you care about is you, and what your clients/prospects or readers care about.

So that is number one. Number two is strategy.

Barry’s post is spot on with Zillow. But you know what? Zillow can careless about our cute little thread here. They just bought Trulia. They are kind of a big deal. And Google thinks so too. So they can screw up and a VC will pay them more to do it.

Hows your business financing going? Don’t answer that;-)

You cannot afford that screw up. And there is an opportunity as Barry points out. But there is a jillion tactics disguised as opportunities on the web. Which one to chose? which one to chose?

It comes down to your values and objectives. Not knowing how Barry’s opportunity fits is a bigger mistake than anything Zillow will ever do.  Because most opportunities like this are nothing but tactics and often fall into the shiny object category. More mental porn that distracts from our execution of our plan.

Strategy and values will guide you to know that once they click on the ad that there is a natural funnel for your visitors to flow through. The less value based, the more manufactured the funnel has to be, and pretty soon you again look like everyone else.

So not sure how to grab your inner wisdom?

Go watch the opposite of your political bent on MSNBC or Fox. If you hate Sean Hannity go watch his smug self explain how and what the news means. If you are more inclined to agree with Sean then venture over to Rachel and study how she twists the news.

Either way it is infotainment. It is at best editorial. It is not news. For the absolute best go to Comedy Central. Stewart and company hiding news between jokes while amazingly crafting what you are supposed to believe. And like in social media the points are made quickly as to not bore the audience. Quickly being replaced by sarcasm and laughter. Bill Maher does a similar game. They are curators. More importantly and sadly, they are thought leaders.

But these guys do what we can and should do. In fact IMHO its the last opportunity on the net.

Selling our authentic, transparent selves is the last great opportunity on the internet.
 And most of our competitors will fail miserably at that since they do not have a client oriented outcome that would benefit from transparency. Especially giants like Zillowia.

English: Zillow logo

English: Zillow logo (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Barry later asked if this was directed at him. And I corrected myself and said no it is directed at the real estate and online community in general. We all suffer from this commiditization process and our experience and skill set is our best defense.