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  1. #1
    Senior Member
    Join Date
    May 2012
    Location
    Ireland
    Posts
    417

    Social Media . . . what's it good for?

    Social media is all the rage these days. Facebook, Twitter, Pinterest, Instagram, and the list goes on.

    Tons of people use these great tools to stay in touch with friends, family, and in my case to try and make a buck or two.

    I know everyone says if you're being social then you'll slowly creep into the fabric of people's lives and by osmosis they'll end up being customers and you'll make money. For Facebook I don't think I've made a dime. For Twitter it has been ok.

    This is based on my gut reaction and seeing direct sales. Personal research beyond that has been non-existent. Who's got the time? I just throw it up on the wall and see what sticks. But even at that it takes time. And time is money. And I wonder if I'm getting a good rate of return for the investment?

    Well I came across this in a Drayton Byrd blog. It is what someone had sent him about corporate social media results:
    Coca-Cola says it can find no correlation between “buzz” on Twitter and actual unit sales. Auto manufacturer Nissan admits it has no idea if social
    media helps it shift cars. MasterCard can’t tie its social investment to revenues. In fact, there remains little evidence social media does anything to
    boost brands’ bottom lines.

    You’d think that would mean a crisis. That’s not the case.

    “We don’t think about the ROI of social; we think about the cost of ignoring it,” said Nissan’s director of digital marketing, Erich Marx. “I’m not dismissing ROI – because it’s always important — but we’re not about to cut back or dismiss social media because we can’t define it,” he added.

    Adam Broitman, MasterCard’s vp of global digital marketing, held a similar view. His company can’t draw a correlation between its social efforts
    and business metrics like sign-ups, but it doesn’t need to.
    “At this point, I think of social media like air. We have no choice but to breathe it.”

    So that's research fro the big boys. The companies that have the time and manpower to measure results. And it ain't going in the right direction.

    This makes me think about canning FB, Twitter, et al and reclaiming that time for something more fruitful, like doing a coffee tasting or talking to coffee shop owners about taking on my brand.

    But, until I do that, what has been your experience? Have you got good techniques for using social media that are working for you? Are you able to count the money coming from social media? Or are you like me, wondering if you shouldn't be doing something else with your valuable time --- even catching up on your sleep?
    Wrinkles only go where the smiles have been -- Jimmy Buffett (via Mark Twain)

  2. #2
    Super Moderator
    Join Date
    Feb 2008
    Location
    Near Philadelphia, PA
    Posts
    4,719
    Hi expat,

    It may be tempting to totally can Facebook, Twitter, et al and reclaim that time for something more fruitful, but it probably would be better if you half-can them instead of totally becoming inactive.

    I've known several businesses who were active on Facebook and Twitter, and suddenly decided that it wasn't worth the time and stopped. When a Facebook page isn't updated on a regular basis, people miss it.

    When they look and see that there has been no activity, they wonder if the business is dead and gone. It's best to spend a little time updating and letting people know you're alive and kicking - not every day, but at least once or twice a week. People who use social media tend to look for businesses who have similar involvement, and they evaluate them based on how much care and cultivation they take on their pages and websites.

    You may not be able to count the money generated by social media, but it's there. Even if you mainly concentrate on actively seeking direct sales, people still go home, and if they want to find you, they'll look to see if you're on Facebook or Twitter in addition to checking out your website.

    Blogging and connecting/referencing your blogs in your Facebook or Twitter posts is a good way to keep things moving along, and it will consistently appear that you're active and involved. It's a great way to save valuable time too. (As my Mother would say, "It's like killing two birds with one stone")

    If you nudge yourself into other people's (especially local businesses) Facebook pages by posting there and referencing your business, or offering specials to their customers, you'll generate some more interest. Local coffee shops may show more interest in taking on your brand if you play nice with them - social media is here to stay. It's a pain sometimes, but it's here to stay.

    Rose

  3. #3
    Senior Member
    Join Date
    Apr 2013
    Posts
    123
    it actually depends how you want to use social media. i mean, there are some that is taking it extremely on the bad side. so i guess, as pinkrose says, its better to do it in half.

    flori
    blogger, coffeeloversofworld.com

  4. #4
    Junior Member
    Join Date
    Jul 2013
    Posts
    29
    Social media is very helpful to gain lots of traffic related your products. you have to reach out to your customers by sharing valuable information.
    Bolas Coffee beans

  5. #5
    Member
    Join Date
    Feb 2012
    Posts
    82
    Social media's usefulness is directly related to the kind of business you are running. ROI is difficult at best to gauge without any useful analytics in place. Are you using any kind of analytics on you website?

    As far as I'm concerned that research by the big boys is pretty useless. Here is my take on it...These big brands are always in your face, tv, radio, ads all over the internet. So much so, most people have learned to tune them out. Social media is just another venue for big brand advertising - another advertising venue we have learned to ignore. How many different ways can Coke say "buy our product?" Either you are a Coke drinker or not. MasterCard or Visa? Nobody really cares. I think they are missing the point with social media.

  6. #6
    Super Moderator
    Join Date
    Feb 2008
    Location
    Near Philadelphia, PA
    Posts
    4,719
    Yes, social media advertising is something else we've learned to ignore.

    When I visit websites, (including Facebook, etc) I don't look at the ads along the sides of the pages. I never think of looking....I couldn't care less. Sometimes I accidently click on something when I'm trying to scroll down the page, and then I land on the advertisers website, which is very annoying.

    This Coffee Forum website has lots of annoying ads on the top and sides of the screen. I wouldn't ever consider making a purchase from those advertisers - simply because they've annoyed me so much! I like it when the belly-fat ads finally go away, but they keep coming back again!

    Rose
    Last edited by PinkRose; 08-15-2013 at 05:30 AM.

  7. #7
    Junior Member
    Join Date
    Aug 2013
    Posts
    14
    I get some business in my tattooing from Facebook and Instagram. People from out of town can see my work and plan appointments for a trip. Not much, but some. Maybe %3-5 of my business comes from that. I see it as being important in creating a community among my customers. It makes them feel good to come and see what's going on in a place they love. So, I doubt you'd get many new clients in coffee but it can help to solidify the ones you have.

  8. #8
    Junior Member
    Join Date
    Oct 2013
    Posts
    7
    I would say just by putting yourself out there, where friends of friends can see you would make a difference, even if you get 1 new client for every 10 posts its a win,

  9. #9
    Junior Member
    Join Date
    Oct 2013
    Posts
    23
    Dependson your market. I have used for my other business and it works well. You have to have a system. If your market is targeted to a middle age younger crown it is the way to go. Cheapest form of branding!

    Sent from my GT-N5110 using Tapatalk

  10. #10
    Junior Member
    Join Date
    Jun 2013
    Location
    Terre Haute, IN
    Posts
    10
    I personally have found social media to be extremely useful in business. I made the rookie mistake of posting business related things on Facebook and Google+ when I should have been more focused on simply interacting. Some of Google's promotional videos really helped me change that. One thing I learned about using social media to promote my business is, don't use social media to promote your business. But that doesn't mean that you shouldn't use it all together. In fact, I would advise you to immerse yourself in it, interact with your customers and colleagues, hold live Google Hangouts, ask questions that are related, but not in promotion, to coffee and espresso. Also, having a good collection of espresso art and coffee shots helps create a sort of atmosphere that our customers want. That's really what our business is all about. It isn't about serving coffee and giving great cups of Joe to passersby, it is about creating an atmosphere and community of people around a cup of coffee (or two).

    Okay, reading that it sounded like a promotional script, but it is really what I think about this whole business now that I'm finally in it. Social media isn't a fad, it is a new social norm and we either have to accept that or be passed up by opportunities.

 

 
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