We see advertisements often from Target, but they could save their money with all the free advertising flash mob give them. Yes you heard me. Flash mobs love Target as you can see from the videos below.
Zumba Flash Mob
Senior Citizen Flash Mob
Beyonce "End of Time"
These videos have garnered millions of views which translates into millions of potential customers. It seems Target takes it all in stride, particularly since flash mobs don't last long.
Everyone has a platform or the ability to build one with a click of a mouse. We call that social media. Fill in few lines, upload a picture (real or imaginary) and they have a space. Now what they do with that space is rather interesting.
1. Soapbox- It doesn't matter what it is, they think their audience wants to hear it. We are not talking once in a while, but often enough that you tend to unfollow or ignore their posts.
2. Complainers- This is an interesting group because sometimes their complaints are valid, but what is not valid is using their posts as a way to manipulate companies into doing something for them which is not warranted or deserved. The main group are people too lazy to pick up a phone or go to the Website, so they just post their gripe, and then gripe more if a representative from that company does not contact them publicly to air out their issues. It's manipulative at its core, but sadly, it's effective, particularly if the complainer has at large following.
3. You can throw a rock and hit a social media "expert." Most are not one, it's that plain and simple.
4. Tech writers are not that original. As a reader of nearly 15 of them, too often they tend to skim off each others ideas, even down to quoting the same material.
5. There are lots of VALID opportunities but you will have to sift through to find them. I partnered with some major companies on the basis of one tweet and an idea of how to utilize it. It completely changed the direction I was going.
6. You can make some great friends, but by all means keep out of the social media clicks and dramas. Millions of people may be on social sites, but you find the community is actually really small.
7. Handle your business. It can be easy with all the social media websites to get whiplash trying to decide which one(s) to be on. Really, it is a mute point if using for personal reasons. If using for business, go where your audience is, and that doesn't require much for most businesses.
8. Have fun. Way too often you can see one post too many telling you how you are doing it wrong, ignore them and talk to your people the way you like or the way they are used to you talking to them. My tweets are really mixed, because it is really built on my personality. As much as I have tried to change it, I always go back to it. I do that because I don't like games and I handle people online the same as I would if they were in my home. I don't have to try to remember how I am supposed to act.
So, you have a platform, use it but please never take people who have invited you into their virtual world for granted.
I know there are studies which swear people don't like to be sold to, but actions clearly show otherwise. As a student of marketing, I have learned lots of the tools and sometimes, gimmicks businesses use to get people to buy their products or services. I am not talking about unethical ones, but valid ones.
What is clear is that people need coaxing to buy things, and for some that may be bonuses to pay to attend webinars, or free stuff to get their email. The bottom line is they can be sold. Sure, some would say it's the content, but I don't think that is really it. People like feeling like they are getting more than they paid for. That's not bad, but it sets them up in a way because if someone has the "right" shiny object then they are willing to buy.
Let me give you a sample of how people are sold. Lets say Company A is pitching a webinar on publishing. They show zero proof that they have even sold books, but get some "testimonials" of supposed students to say they were great, and a person is sold. They then throw in items they value at far more than the price of the course, and another person is sold. Another person sees social proof, and they think they are getting a bargain to boot, so cha ching, hit the buy button.
The only problem with this premise is that it will always take more gimmicks to get a customer like this. They are sort of like the people who want something for nothing. They are the hardest to please and really not the people you want to buy because it will always come at a price later in the form of refunds (after they have downloaded all your stuff), reporting emails as spam (after they got the freebie, but too lazy to unsubscribe), and even some will try to ruin the seller with bogus reviews of how whatever product didn't work even though they didn't even use it.
When I was in sales for a company, one of the things we did not do was offer discounts. The reason was it was unfair to those who paid full price, and discount seekers were the most problematic customers. Over and over this proved true in other sales situations where discounts were the norm. You have to learn to target your marketing to people who buy your product because they need or want it, not because they like the gimmicks or freebies. That means targeting people who can afford your product not those who will send you emails begging to have it for free because they can't afford it or are not willing to pay for it.
There are certain rules in online selling which don't apply to the real world, but I have a feeling it is due to the gimmicks marketers have used as opposed to real rules.
Everyone knows that to get to the top in HR and be a part of the Senior Management Team takes ambition, experience, vision, solid communication skills, but maybe the one thing that is most often overlooked is the ability to effectively influence.
As demands on HR departments increase, The Gautrey Group (www.gautreygroup.com), a niche provider in influence training in the workplace, has seen a rise in the number of organisations looking for advice on how to make their HR personnel more effective and stronger.
Colin Gautrey, founder of the Group, said, “When it comes to knowing how to make a credible contribution and being an integral part of the strategic decision-making process within a business, the HR team need to be able to influence effectively, at all levels. If they can master this, they have one of the most vital skills needed in order to succeed and reach the top.”
He added, “When Lancaster University found evidence that over 50% of HR Directors are unclear about their roles, I wasn’t surprised*. This is exactly the kind of problem more people are coming to us with. When everything is needed urgently and the 'to do' list is growing by the minute, HR heads are working under increasing amounts of pressure to not only support employees but also assist management and roles become unclear. One of the most effective ways to manage these demands is to become more influential, hence the creation of our new programme.”
The company has used its extensive knowledge of influence to build a unique self-development package called “The Gautrey Influence Programme for HR Professionals”. The course offers a comprehensive set of diagnostics and exercises intended to provide HR professionals with the ability to:
•Make a credible contribution to the business.
•Elevate themselves out of administration and into strategy.
•Become part of the strategic decision-making process.
•Become a key member of the business.
•Grow a team that will give HR credibility and respect across the organisation.