This blog should maybe have been titled Confessions of a Dragon due to the bit of truth-telling I’m about to ‘fess up to. I’m not sure that this will get past editorial censorship. After all, it’s probably not a good thing to admit that you’ve wanted to leap across your desk and head-butt a client.
Yesterday, I could have been mistaken for a real-live dragon. A dragon with steam coming out of my ears, breathing fire, fang-snapping, snarling ….the whole bit.
But hey, I’m only human.
Except when I’m being a dragon.
And not the noble nerves of steel kind. More of the oh-boy-you’re-getting-on-my-last-nerve, cranky kind – being a real old dragon – the sort that school kids and parents run and hide from at Parent Teacher meetings.
Is the client in question still a client of Dragon Sisters after yesterday?
Let’s see, shall we …?
Here’s the back-story
This client, let’s call her Claire the Client, is one of our Smarketing clients. What she’s interested in is connecting with her target audience, converting them to serious business prospects, to sell them her product.
Claire’s progress has been great in nailing down her target market and connecting with them – mostly digitally and largely through Facebook. Her FB following has increased, her database and her subscriber list have grown enormously.
Claire’s now ready to really move into converting. She knows there’s plenty of interest in her product. All she has to do is keep doing what she’s doing.
Because you never let up on keeping and growing connections; that’s your sales funnel, and she’s just started implementing her conversion strategy.
I spend a lot of time on Facebook. Checking up on client pages, especially when they’ve just started flying solo, i.e. been let loose on managing their own page. At Dragon Sisters we aren’t fond of managing FB pages, so most of the time we’re teaching folk how to implement Smarketing on that platform for themselves. And as I mentioned, Claire has been going great guns.
Until yesterday, when she shot herself in the foot.
Social media suicide.
Claire should have been hopping around toeless, yelling her head off for a doctor.
Preferably a spin doctor.
Yet she wasn’t.
Because she was blissfully oblivious to the impact of the post she’d put up. A post which over 11,000 of her target market followers would see – and not be impressed with.
The first rule of social media marketing for business is you are your brand.
One of the things we stress about Smarketing is that social media success, in terms of branding for audience engagement, is that personalization is key.
This means that carping is the equivalent to committing hara-kiri, not death by disembowelment, but rather, death by disengagement. The post Claire had put up was a personal rant which put a severe dent in her brand credibility.
Seeing this I wondered if Claire’s brain had been anaesthetised. The joke post I’ve seen on Facebook “that wasn’t me texting last night, it was the wine” sprang to mind.
How do you ask a client if they’ve been drinking on the job?
It was very tempting to ask Claire that question the minute I got hold of her. Since no sane or sober person spends months building a seriously engaged following, only to shoot it out of the sky just when it’s really beginning to fly.
I also couldn’t ask a client have you lost your mind? No matter how crazy they were making me!
The moral of the story is this: you can’t get cocky, careless, or complacent, no matter how great you think you’re doing.
That applies to me too. So, I didn’t leap across the desk and head-butt Claire.
Probably because you can’t do that on Skype.
Yvonne Toering is a business development consultant who has worked with leading organisations and brands including Securicor Group, Vodafone Group, ASDA as well as most of the UK’s major high street retail chains including Marks and Spencer Plc, the National Health Service, Royal Dutch Shell Plc, Mars UK, and the Grand Metropolitan Group, owners of Burger King, Smirnoff, Samuel Webster Brewers, Haagen Daas, Cinzano and other iconic brands.