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Wednesday, February 19, 2014

Using Facebook for Marketing
By definition, Social Media is a means of delivering a message (media) which is accessible to anyone on the internet (social).  One of the negative aspects of social media is that although it may attract many positive interactions and opportunities to build positive networking opportunities, it also attracts much negativity in the form of unwarranted criticism and inappropriate posts.
I was visiting my mechanic (Eunos Custom Automotive in North Vancouver) yesterday and we talked about running a small business and the expense in time and cost of advertising.  I told him about the Media Enhanced Learning course I am taking and mentioned using facebook as forms of free advertising.  “The problem with facebook is there are too many people who have and agenda and post negative things about you,” was Chris, the owner of Eunos’ first comment.  He went on to say that he has worked too hard to build a solid reputation, to be a specialist and to provide good service to his clients to “have someone with an axe to grind to go on facebook and make up anything they want about me”.
As a former manager of a small business, I found the negative comments would far exceed the positive comments on Google+, facebook and the local special interest forums.  Interestingly, I found that many of the comments made about our business were not by clients, but by our competitors and their friends.  In many cases, they had never even visited our stores or described the staff of a different business (our competitor) altogether.  Once they are out there, negative comments are difficult to overcome.  There is no way to please all the people all of the time; however, here are some ways to manage your page and limit the negativity:
From Facebook
blocking someone from facebook
Finally, take steps to build a positive community presence for your page.  There are many tips available online, here is one post I found interesting:
Step #7 is something every business needs to do; keep your page worth visiting
Here are some more ideas I have observed and tried over the years on facebook:
1.      Invite your friends and family to ‘like’ your page, especially those who are ‘influencers’ (those people others turn to for advice).
A few weeks past I dropped my smartphone and damaged the screen, I found a repair depot by noticing that a family member had ‘liked’ the facebook page of a local repair depot.
2.      Post pictures of projects or jobs you have completed or are working on.
After posting pictures of custom systems many of my friends in the car audio industry have had clients ask “can you do that to my car?”
3.      Post interesting articles or research from your field.
This shows that you are on the cutting edge of your field and care about your professional practice.  In other cases it build excitement for new products you will be offering in the future.

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