I complained recently that there are certain individuals out there who are sub-contracted by businesses to RUN their FaceBook & Twitter accounts. From our similar “circles of influence” I have heard people complain that his one person’s followers are getting pretty annoyed of getting a Fan Request from every new client of theirs. Kudos to the businesses for trying something new – boooo for letting someone “do it” for you. Would you let this same person represent you at a meeting with the press or your board of directors? Nuf said.
So the question for the person that doesn’t know and/or understand these social marketing ways is: If I “go” where the people are at, how do I attract them with-out annoying a bunch of people?
Here is what I would do if I were a business owner and wanting to get on FaceBook and Twitter (of course I have done a strategy to decide if these are the right outlets for my customers):
1. Make sure that my current customer lists are up to date and include all the vitals:
- Name, Physical Address, Phone Number of Choice, eMail, FaceBook, Twitter Handle
2. How do I make sure I have ALL THIS before I start on the social sites? ASK. Have a conversation with your customers in person or via email and tell them you have a plan to be on FB etc in the next month & you want to make sure that you have all info ready to better serve the customers with support, promotions, contests, stories etc. (which of course they will have the option to opt-out of being sent info via FB)
3. Have a plan: strategy (includes Who, Why, What you want to accomplish, Who else is on board (can you use co-op dollars?) What kind of response time will you have, How will you deal with negative comments?)
4. Now share this plan with your customers via your updated email list. Let them be part of the process, let them Opt-Out!, Ask them what they want to see from you (and don’t see…because we have all seen and received crap from being a “fan” of someones business that sends you 2 messages a day).
5. After you have refined your plan (set a timeline for feedback/ideas), set up your accounts. Have a reason for people to “fan” you (contest, feedback, discount etc)
6. If you have a personal FaceBook account, don’t invite everyone (this would be the ANNOYING part) but do post a note and a link saying “I now have a fan page for my business where my goal is X, if you would like to become a fan, thank you – if not, I totally respect that!” You get the idea…treat people the way you want to be treated. Unless you are an arrogant jerk with a chip on your shoulder thinking that the world owes you something…and everything YOU post anywhere is relevant – ummm, never mind.
Good luck and don’t be afraid to ask questions to those that are doing a good job – learn from others mistakes and successes!