Using Facebook, Twitter & Pinterest with Radio
We all know that social media is “important.” But, to be honest, I don’t think anybody has found a solid way to correctly use it as an advertising medium. Don’t get me wrong, I think it is an essential part to doing business these days, but nobody has nailed down the best way to harness it. It is truly in the pioneering stages of marketing. So, in the spirit of exploring exciting new ventures, I’m going to delve into the abyss of online socialism. Perhaps I will recover a pearl more beautiful than any forgotten treasure. Maybe, I’ll get tangled in seaweed. Let’s find out!
Facebook – Facebook is the biggest social network, but it is also the most heavily advertised. Unfortunately, advertising takes away from its “cool factor.” But, last month Facebook received 7 billion visits in the USA alone. 7 BILLION! So, I wouldn’t say adding advertising has had a huge negative effect. People still flock to it in droves. So, how do you use it as a business? And how do you incorporate it into your advertising campaigns. There are two options I’ve seen used successfully.
- Soliciting ”Likes” – I’m not a big fan of “soliciting likes,” but if this is important to you, radio can help. It needs to be the focus of the ad though. Many businesses simply add “and like us on Facebook” to the end of their commercials. That is a waste of time. You need to make sure there’s a reason to do it. Nobody will log on, go to facebook, find your page, and click “like” just because you told them to. So, you need to add value. You can add value by adding a good prize, or touching the heart. You’ve probably heard examples of both of these. The prize solicits “likes” by offering something for free to people who click within a certain time period. A restaurant could offer a meal for 4 people if you click “like” this month. Draw a winner out of a hat. Touching the heart is done by offering to donate money to a certain charity for every “like” you receive. Make sure the charity matches your business. The people who like the charity, should be your target demographic as well. Remember what your prize is though. When someone clicks your “like” button, your updates will go into their feed. Make sure to follow up by sharing interesting posts, articles, and specials. Do not fill your clients feed up with advertising of you will be “unliked” in a hurry.
- Contests – This may solicit “likes” while adding entertainment value to your business. Your contest needs to be driven by your potential clients. Don’t grandstand and expect people to care. It has to be powered by real people, not you. Make the contest fun, and offer a reason to participate. For example, if you run a hair salon, ask people to post pictures of their “worst hair day” on your wall. Whichever photo receives the most likes will receive “haircuts for a year.” Build some excitement about your product, entice people to share their lives, and start a personal relationship. Ultimately, just make it fun! Social media is a leisure activity. Don’t wreck the party. Radio is the catalyst. Use your advertising to garner attention to your Facebook page.
Twitter – I love twitter, but it is very difficult to use for business. Not impossible, just difficult. In fact, the creator of Twitter has professed to “not knowing what it’s for” in the past. Most people realize that it’s very important, but someday someone is going to figure out how to use it effectively. Here’s one of mine.
- Join the conversation – That’s what Twitter is, an ongoing conversation. The coolest thing is, it’s really easy to meet new people. It isn’t considered “creepy” to speak to strangers on Twitter. In fact, that is the point. It’s been said that “Facebook is a place for people you know, and don’t like. Twitter is a place for people you don’t know, but like.” So, why not use your radio advertising to continue that conversation. Sounds like a good place to meet like-minded prospective clients. Before you get started, make sure you don’t get “overly commercial.” People don’t want to be advertised at on Twitter. But, they are always happy to share their opinions. So, ask for it! Ask the world about your product line in a personal, friendly way. Write like a real person, not a corporation. When you get people’s opinions, share them on your radio commercials. Ask the users if you can share their opinions along with their Twitter handles. Most people will say yes (and be flattered.) Here’s the thing though, you should include both good and bad reviews. Including a bad comment just shows that you’re real. Being real attracts people in social media (and everywhere else actually.) Let your company be fallible. If you aren’t real, you aren’t doing it right.
Pinterest – You may not have heard of this one yet, but it is getting huge. It is officially the 3rd largest social media site in the US now. It has grown 30 fold in the last 6 months and is creeping up on Twitter in popularity. It received 108 million visits last month. If you run a business, you owe it to yourself to check these sites out. You don’t have to like them, but you do need to understand them. Sign up. They may be very important to your customers.
Here’s a brief description. Pinterest is a place where people share things they like on “pinboards.” Each pinboard will be titled and organized according to someone’s interests (ie food I want to eat, places I want to go, tattoos I like, baby shower ideas.) Each pinboard is filled with “pins.” Pins are basically posts. They are thumbnail pictures with brief descriptions. For example, a picture of a cinnamon bun with a caption that says “The best cinnamon bun I’ve ever eaten.” When someone clicks on the picture, it will take them to the site the picture is hosted on. This is where businesses are cleaning up. The picture may lead back to a recipe on your restaurants website. A picture of a cool pair of high heels may lead back to your shoe stores website. A picture of a happy, fatherly looking old man may lead back to your fishing lodges booking site. So how do you use it with radio?
- Contesting – Pinterest is working better than any other site for businesses. It’s a very positive site full of things people love. So, use your radio advertising to share the feeling. If you own a shoe store, make a page on your website full of beautiful pictures of your shoes. Ask people to “repin” the pictures from your website for a chance to win your favourite pair. If the picture is nice and the shoes are unique, it may be repinned thousands of times by others. You just went viral on Pinterest. The same contest could be used for almost any business. Just get creative and drive the contest through your radio marketing.
Whatever you do, if you own a business, start familiarizing yourself with social media. It is not going to go away. You need to understand it. It doesn’t need to replace your current marketing campaigns, but it can be deadly if you incorporate it into what you’re already doing. Don’t get left behind. This is where the world is going. Don’t miss the last train. If you need help, I would love to chat with you. My email is firstname.lastname@example.org.