This is part of my series “I Don’t Get Social”  inspired by some conversations I had at an industry event, where it became really evident to me, people really don’t get Social. It’s become far more complicated than it really is. Perspectives – I’d like to shed some light, bring some awesome people and companies into the Social World by bringing it down to the basics.

Have some thoughts on this? Join in on the comments, lets bring more Social into the world and clear up these misconceptions.

Overheard: “I am doing Social – I sell online”

Selling online is not “Social” its internet sales.

  • Can people talk to you via your web site or online in any way?
  • If they have a question, can they get access to your customer service people or have a conversation online?
  • Can they share what you are selling them on with their networks? Can they tell people about how much they like you? How easy do you make it for them?

The definition of Social implies interaction. What’s the interaction with your online form? Answer that, then let me know if you’re really doing social. This is misconception #1. Selling online is not being social.

 

Why it is important to Blog & integrate Social Tools vs. Just having a Website

Having a website is like a store front on the internet. It shows people what you want them to see. You may have included helpful information, some background on you, and other tid bits of information you think people want to know. I think a website is a great place to set your home base, create a point of reference for people to find you, and learn about you. It ends there. Its your store window…

Having a website alone is like having a store with no staff.

“Is there anybody here?”

You need to create ways to let people in, interact richly with you, your staff, your products.

Social Tools and blogs allow deeper interactions

Blogging: When you blog, the content may be similar to what you had on a website, but it changes constantly. The more time you can put into it, the more often you share, the more touch points you have with your clients.


The more you build opportunities to establish yourself in your community, interact with others, and respond to current items of interest.

Adding a commenting system, like Livefyre or Disqus allow others to comment on what you wrote about, share stories, or even ask questions.

People being active on your site, and sharing their thoughts is a great way to see what your clients or potential clients are thinking. Don’t you want that opportunity?

Another aspect of a socially adapted site is that people can share what they read or find if they like what they are seeing. Including photos, discussions, items of interest to your readers, or fans makes them want to share.

By integrating Social Tools such as Add This, Share This, DiggDigg, Socialize and others you allow people to +1 you on Google Plus, Like you in Facebook, post to Facebook, Linked in or post to Twitter – and now with Pinterest, people can even extract your photos and share those.

If all you have is a website , without social interaction possibilities, you lose all these opportunities.

So, what’s the value of a website without social again? It’s time to re-evaluate.

But I Don’t Have Anything to Talk About

You’re wrong. You have plenty to talk about. What do you do at work every day? What do your Customer Service Reps talk about to your clients? What are your top questions?

You can talk about all of this.

Blogging or Social posts (including Twitter and Facebook) don’t have to be award-winning literature.

People often say to me, I don’t have the time to come up with content.

Well, let me ask you this, did you send an email to anyone recently about something – explaining a product or service? Have you had a conversation on the phone? What did you talk about then? You have something to talk about, you just have to open your mind and not restrict yourself. Listen to what people are talking about and become part of the conversation.

Yesterday I blogged about St. Patrick’s Day in Montreal, does this have anything to do with my field- insurance or with “Social Media”? Not really. Do people I interact with care about St. Patrick’s Day? Maybe. Do people in my city care about St. Patrick’s Day? Yes! I thought it was a fun topic, so I wrote about it. It’s as simple as that. It was current, and it was fun. If I can tie that in with business, great – if not – that’s okay too!

The people who you interact with on Social Media are people. If you can host a party, without worrying about what everyone there will talk about, then you are READY for Social Media.

Social Media is an Open House Party for your business

Be social, be inviting, be pleasant – you CAN do this.

Social Media is like the party you are hosting in your home. Your home is your business, your clients are invited in, as well as people you don’t know, and it’s an open house. You will not greet everyone by saying “Hello, I would like to sell you this” you say hello, let people know what you do, who you are, they let you know what they do. You talk about the weather, look for common ground, likes, dislikes. Talk about kids, about vacations…whatever people talk about at parties. Build relationships.

Think about it. Get Social – really Social

In my next editions of this series, I am going to talk about the ROI and the next major concern people seem to have – the complaining client.

Until then, tell me, are you able to host a dinner party or open house at your home? What if I asked you out for coffee? Are you now able to view a social presence as the same as golfing with clients, an afternoon at the club, meeting someone for lunch?

Social is not about selling, it’s about building a community

Your competitors are holding open house parties, communicating, reaching out and you’re nowhere to be found -


What else is holding you back?
Please comment, join the conversation – get social!