Adopting Social Media for Your Business
Last week, I offered a request to my readers to post their comments regarding their adoption of social media. Based upon the results of a recent poll we conducted at CatalogSuccess.com (click here), many of you aren’t jumping on the bandwagon, as compared with pure-play e-retailers and other Internet marketers.
While I’m a bit disappointed about this — both the lack of adoption of social media and response to my column — I believe there's a huge opportunity at hand to take our multichannel industry to the next level.
So let me ask you this: What's your level of social media adoption? Blogs? Message boards? Video? Sites like Facebook? Let’s get a dialogue going on this.
I understand things are a mess out there business-wise, but we need to start operating on the following premise: If you listen, they will come.
For now, I hope to inspire you with a story from another industry.
Recently, I had the opportunity to do business with a truly customer-centric organization. Every year I take a cruise in January. Within one week of my return, I received a 58-question (yes, that's not a typo, I did say 58-question) survey from the travel company that puts on the cruise.
Now to set the background a bit, this isn’t just any cruise. It’s a specialty music cruise called Jam Cruise (www.jamcruise.com). Think Mardi Gras or Woodstock on a luxury Italian cruise liner, with live bands playing night and day.
The survey sets the stage for the following year's cruise. It asks questions about the bands, the ports, the service, the food and all of the extras they provide, to determine both what they can do better and what their customers would like to see happen in the future.
In addition, the company has a message board it constantly monitors. Since the day the cruise ended, the message board has been lit up like a Christmas tree. Posts on the board range from super positive to super negative (the negatives were mostly about the food, which was “off” this year, and the process of getting on the ship, which didn't go as planned). As to the negative comments, I was very pleased to see that the Jam Cruise staff made its presence felt and offered apologies and explanations.
Jim Gilbert has had a storied career in direct and digital marketing resulting in a burning desire to tell stories that educate, inform, and inspire marketers to new heights of success.
After years of marketing consulting, Jim decided it was time to “put his money where his mouth was" and build his own e-commerce company, Premo Natural Products, with its flagship product, Premo Guard Bed Bug & Mite Sprays. Premo in its second year is poised to eclipse 100 percent growth.
Jim has been writing for Target Marketing Group since 2006, first on the pages of Catalog Success Magazine, then as the first blogger for its online division. Jim continues to write for Total Retail.
Along the way, Jim has led the Florida Direct Marketing Association as their Marketing Chair and then three-term President, been an Adjunct Professor of Direct and Digital marketing for Miami International University, and created a lecture series, “The 9 Immutable Laws of Social Media Marketing,” which he has presented across the country at conferences and universities.