Have you asked, “How can we use social media to build our business?”  If so, this is part of the problem.  This sounds like you want someone else to make it happen. Figure it out and apply it to your old business. Too many of you are USING social media for your business, when instead, you need to learn to BE MORE SOCIAL!

While your marketing team is busy setting up an Instagram account, scheduling a Blab show, and crafting a promotional piece about your brand for Facebook and Twitter, your front desk clerk gives a blank stare to the guest who just asked how to redeem the Foursquare offer.

While guests are sitting at a table waiting for their food to arrive, they are on Facebook or Yelp checking in, snapping pictures, and letting people know where they are eating while your wait staff  doesn't even know you have a Facebook Page and no one in the management team has ever used Yelp.

Social reviews, yelp, trip advisor, hotels social media

This is a problem.

Your customers are several years ahead of your business and most of your team in the social and digital tools they are using and we are still talking about “using social media.”  

Why is this? Why do some people remain curious and pick up new technology easily, and others claim to be “too old to learn it?” Does your business make it acceptable to remain ignorant about the new digital world, when that is exactly where your customers live and SHOP?

A social business thinks differently.

A social business knows that everything today is shared, whether through a post or a picture, a review or a video…all featuring YOUR BRAND, and the consumer wants to participate.  Whether your employees are in sales, marketing, housekeeping, or front counter, they should understand how your business is using social media and encourage them to join in. The sad truth is, about 1:3 individuals will become irrelevant or unemployable in the next 5 years because they refuse to learn to use the new tools of the day! Don't be that ONE!

Here are 7 ideas to become a more social business:

  1. Add a module into your new hire training called “what it means to be social here” and have current employees (including the leadership team) go through it first.
  2. Challenge your executive teams to experiment with the tools they want to the marketing team to get results with.
  3. At team meetings, focus on one social tool and have everyone take out their phones and try it.
  4. If anyone on your team sees a guest or customer trying to snap a photo, whether in a group or alone, your team member will ask if he or she can take it for them to get everyone in the shot.  Follow up with “Be sure to tag us on Facebook or Instagram! We love being social!”
  5. When a customer or guest compliments you for outstanding service and even says they will fill out your survey cards, hand them a card with your social review sites on it–Yelp, TripAdvisor, etc and a short reminder that “Your feedback and comments are valuable to us and to our success. We would LOVE a short comment from you.  Thanks for being social with us!”
  6. Have a training session on taking better photos with smartphones! Bring someone in and do a fun lunch-n-learn session on how to capture those sharable pics throughout your organization.  Don't let another company fundraiser or community event go by without walking away with several great photos to share with your online community.
  7. Place a visual reminder at tables, counters, and anywhere else your customer might be sitting or standing while holding their mobile devices, letting them know you would love to stay connected with them on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, etc.
  8. Ok, it's your turn.  We'd love to hear your ideas.  What else can organizations do to BE MORE SOCIAL?

@GinaSchreck

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