mickmel - 9:09 pm on Oct 4, 2010 (gmt 0)
It's all about meeting people where they are. With 500M people on Facebook, averaging 5 hours/week each, that's a lot of time being spent on there.
Whatever I have to tell our customers I tell them straight on our website and I don't see any reason why this should be changed!
That's what you're telling your existing customers, and I agree that it's a great way to do it. Once you have a customer, then your options really open up. It's getting the customer in the first place that's the challenge. For most companies, social media creates an additional channel to help them be found by potential customers.
they do a couple postings the first week its up, then forget it
A huge problem indeed. Even companies that post often still look at it like a new way to broadcast their message. They're forgetting the "social" part of it. Just because some companies half-ass it doesn't mean the idea itself is wrong.
I am sure a lot of plumbers and carpenters can't really wait to get home to start blogging and twitting about great toilet installations they just completed.
Funny you should use that as an example. One of my favorite personal anecdotes is how a single tweet created a $700 sale (to me) from a local plumber:
If they're talking about toilet installations, they're obviously missing the point. However, if they're offering useful advice ("freeze warning tonight, don't forget to let your sink drip") or using it to create relationships with potential customers (like Cool Ray did for me, without trying to sell me a thing), it can be very beneficial.
It's not the magic bullet that many way to claim it is, and it certainly takes a lot of work, but social media can bring you closer to your customers and (if used correctly) can bring your more traffic, sales, etc.