Ok folks. I need to get something off my chest!

I’m not a social media expert. For that, you have to go talk to my friend Anthony Denardis (seriously, the dude is the best in the business). But the one thing I know is that “advertising” via social media posts just simply doesn’t work. It’s not what it’s there for. Understand though that social media itself, and advertising on social media websites are two very different things. When you buy an ad on Linkedin or Facebook, it’s being shown in the advertising part of the website, where people are expecting ADS. Using these services to advertise your company in the proper ways can be EXTREMELY effective. Especially with the targeting you are able to accomplish when done right. What I’m talking about is using a social media post itself to attempt to advertise your services….

For example….

Not a day goes by when I don’t get a notification of a publication of a new post on Linkedin from one of my connections that says something like “We sell the best widgets in town”. I have it set up so that I get a notification anytime someone publishes a new post. Lately, at least 50-60% of the time, it’s someone directly trying to sell me something. Home care services, training, internet marketing, website development, you name it. So basically some people think that the publication option OR EVEN the direct message option on Linkedin = their opportunity to directly advertise their company or their service to all of their connections.

STOP! All this is doing is hurting your reputation, and your business. NO ONE WILL BUY FROM YOU IF THIS IS YOUR MARKETING APPROACH. You’re wasting your time, and the time of the person you are messaging or the people who read any of your posts.

I call this the “Social Media Cold Call”.

Remember when cold calling was the thing to do? “Knock on enough doors and you’re sure to get a sale” the sales manager would say. So, out on the road sales people would go, literally knocking on doors. And yes, they would eventually get a sale… but for most sales people their psyche was so damaged that two days later, even though by the company standards they were “successful” they would quit, out of pure humiliation. Sales managers, don’t yell at me here. I know it’s a successful sales tactic. I just think it’s stupid.  🙂

So back to the social media cold call…. It has never, and will never be truly effective. Some may say “Well it earned me a new customer, so it worked!” …. but in all reality, it’s not about the customers that a tactic like that earns you, it’s more about the POTENTIAL customers who were turned off by it.

So what then is effective on social media? Why do so many business people and businesses use it? For EDUCATION and COLLABORATION!

Educate your customers and potential customers about your industry. Show that you are the expert. Collaborate with your customers and potential customers. Answer questions, become engaged with them. Show them you care.

So stop using “Linkedin Posts”, messages, and the publication option to advertise your business, and start using it how it’s supposed to be used, which is to show your expertise, and educate potential customers, partners, clients, friends, referral sources, etc. Start doing that, and watch how suddenly, you not only earn more customers, but they are typically more loyal to you than when you cold call them (in any way).

MAKE THEM COME TO YOU and that changes everything. Need help with that? Call me!

/rant    🙂