Rodnick Chiropractic  Waterford Michigan

HAS SOCIAL MEDIA REALLY FAILED US?

Remembering What Advertising Life Was Like In 2006

Detroit – Advertising has never been perfect. There was was always an X-factor with it, the unknown risk, trouble and that was kind of the fun with it. The old joke about not knowing what percentage of it was actually working was true. Search engines in 2003 were just in its infancy and they were not really the fine tuned machines that we know today. They were random at best and with Netscape and Yahoo leading the way things were pretty gray. You were better off with direct mail back then. Social media was still a ways off.

When social media came up in the form of Youtube things were still kind of sketchy. But the promise of what social media could be was alluring. Things were still hit or miss but there was definitely a feeling that social media was here for the better good. The social media advertising platforms weren’t firmly put in place yet. In fact, Google did a very interesting thing with Google Plus. They put together a great tool that enabled users to have a similar experience like Facebook. There was a time where I really thought they were in some kind of competition.

It was almost like Google wanted to help its users create more online presence. I was able to use some of there snippet line code and wire it into my web pages and send a ping bot back to Google to anchor my pages on the first page. It worked like a charm. I really used it to the maximum until Google saw that guys like me were not buying ads but really using their system. So a few months ago Google finally pulled the plug on it.

The Party Ended Quite Quickly

There was a time, a very brief time, where Facebook almost seemed to care about its users. They even fabricated this O.G. tag which stood for Open Graph. The idea was that it was supposed to help make your posts searchable and for a while it actually worked. I think I remember seeing my posts indexed on the first page of Google. That did not last very long because once again it all comes down to buying ads. Facebook launched a paid search capability and they never turned back. They did a sneaky thing around that time and I don’t think a lot of people really caught it.

Every time you make a post less people seemed to be paying attention. You had to pay for that sort of involvement. Worse, your posts were not searchable on Google. With every new post you were also pushing your previous posts further down the timeline. It was almost like there were walls around your Facebook pages and if you wanted any kind of eyeballs or involvement you had to pay for it. This seemed odd to me since the goal of Facebook when it first started was to not have ads at all. Zuckerberg himself was quoted as saying, “Ads aren’t cool” according the motion picture, “The Social Network”.

People spend HOURS on posts and some even live on Facebook, taking breaks now and then, to spend additional time on Instagram,( which is also owned by Facebook). I noticed that since Facebook totally took over that the action on Instagram dropped significantly too. The number of followers dropped and would not rise in over a year no matter what we tried. The emphasis to move to their paid platform was pushed on us daily. So it has not been very productive.

Who Is Monitoring These Social Media Accounts?

So when you connect to a business on Instagram there is a good chance you are talking to a kid or an intern. Usually it’s the bosses kid or some college intern. When you send a message to the business owner that message usually doesn’t get forwarded to the business owner. How do I know? I called my own leads and was somewhat surprised that they didn’t even have any idea who I was. Also, even more disturbing, the staff that I hired was supposed to call these leads too and they didn’t even call. In fact, when I contacted my social media leads they had zero clue who I was or that I even was interested in starting any kind of relationship with them.

So, when you tell me that you have leads on social media, and that you have a huge following … yatta yatta yatta… to me that is absolutely worthless. What a waste of time. You are better off using stamps or cold calling.

We had leads come in from Texas, California and New York and every response was pretty much the same. Nobody had ever heard of us. Even when these companies opted in on our offers. So who is it that is clicking on our offices from these companies? Certainly it wasn’t the business owners. It remained a mystery and it was an eye opening experience.

That being said I cannot imagine wanting to spend money on these kind of interactions with paid ads. Then once you get them you have to contact them and filter them out just to see who is serious. In our case nobody was serious. We were giving away a FREE course on search engine optimization techniques just for plastic surgeons. You think they would really want to get more of that kind of information, you know… just to stay relevant. We later suspected that it was interns or their paid staff who had a yearning to be marketing gurus. This was not in the best interest of the doctors but for themselves.

That was clearly not working.

HERE ARE SOME EYE OPENING STATS

This came across my desk recently and I need to reveal it to you. Right now Facebook has only 7% of the business community on it – THATS IT --- only seven measely percent. On a much different scale LinkedIn has grown 288% and it has a much more indepth business minded audience on it. This is important to pay close attention to. A lot of your decision makers are on here and are looking for solutions to problems.

Before I go into this next part I want to tell you about a recent live event I hosted. I am an Ex-Agency guy and have worked with some of the biggest companies on the planet such as Foote Cone and Belding, Young and Rubicam, BBDO, Ogilvy and so on. I come from the Chicago scene and have worked New York so I have real experience. I had asked the audience how many people owned agencies. Every single hand went up in the room and I was aghast. I knew half of these people and knew they couldn’t even build a simple web page. Worse, most of them were flat out lying to me. Yet, everyone in the group felt the need to overcompensate their surroundings and blurt out an obvious lie.

The Trouble With Script Bots, Automated Chats,
and Other Time Wasters

Now that you know that story let me you what bothers me about LinkedIn. There is a new technology that is out that involves bots. They get into your messenger and its a pre-written script. I can’t tell you how many of these fake script bots bother me on a weekly basis. You can tell they are phoney because they go straight into a selling situation. This is not how people talk. I have had to even go as far as to BLOCK PEOPLE. I now have a blacklist on LinkedIn and in other places. Once you betray my trust with this I do not forgive. You just get blocked. I’m the boss and set the rules.

Once you blow it on this level don’t bother calling our offices. I won’t print out his full name but Dr. Bruno from Oakland County, Michigan is on our blacklist. He is a catfish and a fraud. He is on our blacklist for good reason. This guy harassed us with his high tech bullshit long enough and finally he was kicked out. Some of these guys cannot take no for an answer and will send call bots to your phone and email. Guess what….. We had to block them there again.

Sincerity is definitely a thing of the past. So is forming good relationships and creating a first name based friendship with someone. I blame it on the 4th wall. This screen you are looking at is the fourth wall and is what separates you from the rest of the world. As a keyboard warrior you are looking through it and making judgment from the safety of your office. Here you make an quip observation without fear of repercussion. It can be a harsh critique or another hire situation for a brand representative. In this realm there is skin in the game. Communication skills have suffered severely.

From this level all sorts of communication problems run rampant. We have had married men make inappropriate unwanted romantic advances on us. We have had women do the same. These people have no sense of self and no morals! Its a zoo. We pulled the plug on many of them and threw them out of our system. Among the sales problems now we got to worry about being hit on by both sexes. INSANE.

PUT A FENCE UP…. And put an end to this crap. Forget the whole thing where we have to be nice to eachother and its 2020 and its a new world. Learn some freakin’ manners and conduct business like decent people. Can we do that? Is that too hard? IMPOSSIBLE FOR YOU MAYBE? That door works. If that’s the way you must conduct yourself then use it. There’s a lid for every crackpot but you won’t find yours here.

This is my house.

This is my business.

Setting standards is essential and necessary. Look at your business a fort and you must keep it standing. You have to put rules into place and set standards for it so that it will run right. Otherwise you are going to have people calling you up at 4AM, (this really happened to us) and attract more of the same kind. Like attracts like so unless you want to end up with some sort of soup kitchen take care of that now.

When I look at how business was done before 2005 the differences are really obvious. Our standards have seriously slipped through the floor. The types of behaviors we tolerate with now did not even exist back then. My best advice is to not tolerate them and to always be on guard. You are surrounded by what you create so make careful choices about who gets through the gate.

HOW DO YOU GET AROUND THIS WHOLE MESS?

For the first time in history everyone is speaking at once. Everyone is clamoring for your sole attention by speaking over one another. It blows my mind how bad people are when it comes to sales and basic communication skills. I am not talking about grammar but basic manners and common sense. We are all so self absorbed it is hard to tell when someone is being really sincere. You can really see this happen when you are in a business meeting like a BNI, Chamber of Commerce event, and so on. Its obscene. This is why I stopped going to a lot of these types of groups because it is a time waster in this age. People want what they want and even if they do listen to you they are not truly invested. Their minds are somewhere else.

I have collected a shoebox full of business cards from insincere and clueless people who want me to buy something. They can’t wait to forget my name and many do. I stopped investing time in this capacity after investing months, sometimes years and spent thousands of dollars on people who cannot connect. They do not have the chops to be great connectors, communicators, or lead.

To crawl out of this financial cesspool you have to do some work. You need to create some selling tools that pre-sell. These tools have to communicate what you do and who you can help. You cannot be vague about it. The other thing is that whatever you come up with should be self explanatory. You should not have to use up my billable time trying to sell it to me in some coffee house. I should be able to understand it in about 20 seconds. I stopped giving out huge chunks of my billable time so I could be classified as a, “nice guy” and a, “team player”.

You’re pamphlet, handout, or website should get right to the point. If you cannot tell me what you are about in two sentences we aren’t going to spend much time together. It has to be direct and straight to the point.

There are certain qualities that people look for when you communicate to them. Make sure that the communication you create is not just about yourself. I see this simple fact overlooked whenever I go out and coach professionals. Too many times the seller will go right into their recommended doctors case studies and proof of research. They overwhelm the consumer with facts, test, lab results, you name it and its bewildering.

People look for the following in any relationship:

1. To have their ideas validated and understood

2. To bring something of value and contribute

3. To feel respected and have a place of value

4. A need to belong

Are you doing that when you bark out your opinions and sales pitching? Is the person you are talking to going to carry out your vision? Are you just talking to yourself and looking for a warm body to peddle your products?

Are you in denial?

This is something you really need to hammer out. Maybe your e-book, PDF or brochure is too one sided for your product? There is nothing worse than collecting a whole bunch of clueless people who really don’t want to be there. Its hard to fake heart, commitment and passion. Worse, it is even hard to duplicate that phoney lifeless passion into other unsuspecting people and then anticipating it all to work.

YOUR NPR AND PROSPECTING NEEDS IMPROVEMENT

Do you know one of the reasons why trade shows are so appealing? It allows you to be placed in your general interest group and then sell to anybody who happens to stroll by. Your odds of winning go up at a higher percentage but its not a perfect fit. For all its good points it is still a random way of conducting business and the end results are very sketchy.

No matter if you are working a trade show booth or if you are meeting people on the street your NPR needs attention. Every business owner should be familiar with NPR and that stands for Neuro Linguistic Programming. In short, it is the ability to read people at multiple modalities – body language, body posture and vocal tone. I have seen professionals in full sales mode fly right over the visual cues of someone who is not interested. I have seen them talk over someone who is not even financially qualified to contribute. I have seen my own sales guys bullshit me by talking over me. I hired guys on drugs in the past. I had clients on drugs in the past and that was my own poor judgment until I learned to how to properly read people. I cut out a lot of wasted time that way. You need to do this in your business too.

Success leaves clues… Ever hear that? That is so overused. Do you know what else leaves clues? Failure. And you have to be quick to pick up on that.

Now in 2020, these skills are just as valid as ever. Worrying about the newest messenger bot, and interruption sales ad or other form of gimmick isn’t going to save your business. But it is time to put away the toys and get back to what works and for some of us that means dumping social media.

Cantu 2020

 

 


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