I’m often asked why a local business would bother with social media. My short answer, is that it doesn’t make sense, unless it’s part of your strategy. By itself, it’s a waste of time and an unnecessary distraction. However, when used as part of your e-marketing strategy, it feeds the hungry sales funnel.
I’m a visual person, so let me show you what I mean in the funnel chart below. On the left are actions that you take to find customers. On the right are the reactions that your customers take as a result of your actions. Because you do not know where potential customers are in their “buying” cycle, you have to meet them where they are.
Feed the hungry sales funnel!
Why Marketing is like dating.
Social media gets you out where your customers are already hanging out. Woo them, get to know them, build a relationship. Have you ever been on a date with an overeager suitor? Yea…don’t be that person. Social media is a non-threatening way to connect, get noticed, and hopefully get clicked on. It’s a first meeting.
Once you have their attention, you’ve got to show them you offer something of value. That’s the first date. Then, and only then, will they comfortably evaluate if they’re ready to take the “next step” in the relationship, such as signing up for your email list, RSS feed, comment on your blog, etc.
When the time comes to close a sale, it’s organic. When they need what you offer, they’ll think of you first. And because it’s a relationship and not a one-night-stand, they’ll probably tell all their friends.
What’s in YOUR funnel? Will you and your customers live happily ever after?