>Taking the Wind Out of the Sales of Marketing

16 06 2009

>This was a line I recently used (or some variation of it) in a blog article for a client. For some reason unbenknownst to me, I can’t get it out of my head, so I thought I’d see if I could write it out and find a little peace.

In writing this line, I was trying to say that social media marketing, when properly used by businesses to promote their services and products, has added some of the humanity back to sales. It lets marketing be a lot less “Sunday! Sunday! Sunday! announcer guy and a lot more “Hey, guess what I just found out” word of mouth advertising.

I like social media for this human quality – I really do. I enjoy connecting with target markets via niche sites, or general social media sites like Facebook or Twitter. It can be very effective and not nearly as blatant as email marketing. I recommend a social media aspect to all of my clients marketing plans and the results have been great.

However, it’s important that we, as social media users, keep these sites friendly, comfortable places because if we all come off sounding like a car salesman, we’re going to scare off our would-be friends.

I’ve found that a 60/40 rule works for social media, at present. 40% obvious sales or marketing, 60% “hi, how ya doin’.” Sites like Linked In or Xing are where you can be a lot more business, but Facebook forces the marketing to a minimum and Twitter loses its effectiveness if all you do with your 140 characters is is sell, sell, sell.

Even when you’re making a pitch, be human about it. Don’t ramrod your information down other members’ throats. Take as delicate an approach as you would if you had just met this person, face to face, over cocktails at a networking party. Keep that first impression about who you are, not what you sell.

Try it for yourself and see if you don’t get a few less runaways and add a few more friends to your lists…

Good business to you!

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