Marketing: There’s Really Nothing Magical About It!

Marketing: There's Really Nothing Magical About It!

For some marketers, there’s a need to make social media and digital marketing almost anything except what it really is.

Buzz words like easy, simple, cheap, delicious, killer, awesome, and I could go on AND on, are filling our feeds. It’s apparently easy to be epic. It’s simple to succeed in marketing, business, AND life. Working for yourself is delicious and delightful.

Sadly, these simplistic simperings don’t factor in the reality of what it actually takes to create, build and maintain a successful business.

Recently I came across an article discussing the magical nature of social media marketing and I realized I just couldn’t take it a second longer. This marketing myth must be addressed, dressed down and put on a time out.

Magic & Marketing Don’t Mix!

There’s no magic wand being waved over marketing campaigns.

The “magic” you’re seeking actually happens when you put your muscle and your mind behind the project, task or campaign.

That’s right! The main ingredient in any success recipe is hard work. Synonyms for hard work include hustle, sweat equity and perseverance.

Smoke & Mirrors Rarely Reveal Success

When you get right down to it, many of the “magical” musts touted by marketers are simply tricks. It’s tempting to fall for the idea of the time-saving trick, I know. But trickery has a way of turning around on you and biting you in the butt.

Think about Loki, the Nordic god, the trickster. He often found himself in a lot of hot water, or some thunder from Thor, after engaging in his patented trickery.

Loki isn’t someone I’d look up to as a business mentor. In modern times his tactics and tricks would be described as sketchy or shady. You rarely see sketchy or shady preceding success in a description about a business!

Testament To Time & Tireless Effort

There’s a reason we look up to people who have paid their dues “in the trenches.” We value that effort, that focus, that drive. Tricks and tantalizing tactics aren’t based on drive or effort. In fact, they look to negate the necessity of hard work and hustle.

Crafting quality content, maintaining relationships that matter with clients and peers, creating new relationships and delivering quality customer service … they all take time. Time and effort.

[clickToTweet tweet=”Easy and #entrepreneur rarely go together. #smallbiz #realyourealbiz” quote=”Easy and entrepreneur rarely go together. “]

Passion without perseverance and some sweat brings little reward.

The easy button, the magical “minutes a day” schemes, they’re silly dreams that too often turn into nightmares for those that decide to rely on them.

Learn To Love What You Own

In closing I leave you with this New Pornographers cover of the Destroyers “Hey Snow White.”

[clickToTweet tweet=”Own your efforts and your ethics. Stop looking for the free, easy or quick fix. #realyourealbiz” quote=”Own your efforts and your ethics. Stop looking for the free, easy or quick fix.”]

Prince Charming isn’t waiting in the wings to bestow a magical kiss that will make all your dreams come true. There’s no fairy godmother who’ll change your pumpkin into a carriage that will carry you to business success.

Own your effort, your sacrifice, your blood, sweat and tears. And love that ownership!

You create your own magic through the relationships you maintain, through the effort you expend and with the mind you use to master your craft.

For The Love of Facebook …

For The Love of Facebook ...

You have to imagine that title being delivered with every last possible ounce of frustration and foreboding. Like when you say “for the love of Pete” when you’re at your wits end!

Facebook, It’s Not My Favorite …

I think anyone who knows me even the littlest bit, knows this. I haven’t hidden my frustrations and my lack of love.

But, while I think Facebook’s returns will only continue to diminish, even I have to admit there are still some returns to be gained, especially if you’ve already got a fairly established presence.

I just haven’t been willing, up to now, to put in the time, effort and dollars necessary.

Facebook Is Like Spinach

That one might throw your for a loop, but let me explain.

I’m a crazily picky eater. I’m the kind of girl that orders the same thing from a given restaurant because it’s the only menu item that doens’t include any of my NO WAY food phobias.

I know, it is good for me. I even find it pleasant from time to time, but it’s just not my go-to choice when I’m rooting around in the fridge!

I feel the same way about Facebook. I understand it’s absolutely got some digital marketing value and clout. I even have a little fun with it when I take the time to visit and interact with my friends. I even know it’s still a powerhouse for a couple of my clients.

But, when it comes to my own business, it’s fallen to the very bottom of a very long social sharing list.

Facebook Is Annoying!

I have to thank my husband for this header. He reminded me that spinach often gets stuck in your teeth and can be as annoying as all get out.

Facebook, my “friend,” you too are quite annoying. You’ve become a fair weather friend, a fickle tween. You can’t make up your mind, constantly flittering from algorithm change to algorithm change.

Your constant need to remain new, fresh and relevant is understandable. You want to retain your #1 spot, your hold on the title of social media juggernaut.

Facebook Still Has A Function

Lackluster inclusion of both spinach and Facebook has been my own choice. But it’s one that’s been on my mind for a while.

I struggle with anemia, so the added iron boost more spinach in my diet would add is certainly something to think about. And, as I work on creating a new information product based on visuals and visibility, the #VizVibe, I understand that I have to out Facebook and a concerted Facebook effort at the top of my social media marketing list.

Intent, Purpose & The Proper Pairings

It’s all about how you incorporate the things that you know are a good idea, but just aren’t all that jazzed about. I love smoothies, so pulverizing a couple handfuls of spinach along with the berries, cucumber and other fruit and veggie goodness just makes sense.

It’s the same with Facebook. Late last year I stated I was going to take a formulaic approach to Facebook. But I didn’t do so with any real intent and purpose. I wasn’t ready.

Maybe that will make it harder to regain any small hold I once held on Facebook. But it allowed me to spend time on building followings on the platforms that matter more to me and my message, Twitter and Google+.

Facebook, Like Spinach, Requires Proper Intake & Inclusion!

Much as I know that adding more spinach to my diet will make my anemia symptoms easier to keep under control (FYI, that whole Mallie never sleeps thing is tied to it), I also know that carefully and consistently adding Facebook back into my digital marketing and social media sharing mix can only be good for me.

How About You!

Any “good for you” actions you plan to take in the future? Let’s hold each other accountable!

There Are No Marketing Gods!

There Are No Marketing Gods!

When it comes to marketing, there are of course many people we look up to, from whom we wish to learn. We all have our own marketing icons, individuals we think of as influencers, even powerhouses.

But are there marketing gods? No!

[clickToTweet tweet=”Gods are omnipotent and omniscient … marketers ARE NOT!” quote=”Gods are omnipotent and omniscient … marketers ARE NOT!” theme=”style4″]


I often read articles, disagree with them, and store them for future use as article fodder. I’ve been sitting on this topic for a while, waiting for the impetus to really let loose. Today feels like the day.

Gods vs. Marketers

First things first, let’s take a quick trip to one of my favorite sites,, in order to understand two of the key words I intend to use to debunk the gods of marketing myth.

[om-nip-uh-tuh nt]

1. almighty or infinite in power, as God.
2. having very great or unlimited authority or power.

[om-nish-uh nt]

1. having complete or unlimited knowledge, awareness, or understanding; perceiving all things.

While the gods may be all knowing and all powerful, the human beings, not so much. And marketers are, indeed, human beings, no matter how often we might think that certain members of that industry are actually robots!

All Powerful? I Think Not!

While many a marketer has managed to spark lightning with an idea, to make a thunderous statement, even to create a tidal wave with a post (going viral), none have the ability to make it so every time they share a thought. You’re not Thor. You can’t actually call thunder and lightning at a whim.

While sometimes circumstances and luck work together and something we hope will go viral actually does, no marketer has the power to “make viral happen” through sheer will or intent.

Power Misused Makes For Marketing Fails

Consider, if you will, the head of the Greek pantheon, Zeus. The dude had a temper problem and his jealousy often got the better of him. Marketers aren’t immune to these failings, either.

But, because Zeus was a god, he could get away with his failings. His anger even managed to make him more powerful.

But when a marketer loses his/her cool and makes a rash decision, it doesn’t add to allure and power. It, instead, results in admonishment and even embarrassment. How many times have you seen a marketer lash out, only to be lambasted by their followers and anyone else drawn into the embarrassing spectacle.

The gods could get away with stupidity because of that all encompassing power. Marketers, not so much!

Even Experts Don’t Know It All!

It’s time now to take a look at the all knowing side of being a deity.

Let’s look at Athena as we dissect this. She was a serious bad ass. But she often had to make unpopular choices to achieve her end goal. She could do so, because of her omniscience. She knew what the end result was before she took the steps to get there.

We mere mortals, I’m sad to say, don’t have this ability. We certainly can plot out the steps in order to reach a goal, and we’re often successful. But we can’t know with certainty that each goal will be met, not at the outset. Goals and results aren’t synonymous. Sometimes they just don’t synch.

[clickToTweet tweet=”All powerful gods could get away with poor choices. Marketers? Not so much!” quote=”Gods, because they were all powerful, could get away with poor choices. Marketers? Not so much!” theme=”style4″]


When marketers make unpopular choices, even with a positive end goal in mind, we lose audience. Why? Because we’re not all powerful, and fear as a motivator just doesn’t work the way it used to. Because we can’t see the end before we’ve launched the beginning, we have to be very careful.

We’re not deities and our failures can’t be quashed so easily. Instead, they are openly discussed, often lamented, even more often lambasted, and they can follow us around forever. I don’t know about you, but I can’t throw a detractor into the sky and make them a harmless constellation. You?

No Marketer Is Immortal

The gods had one crucial weapon that we marketers simply don’t have in our arsenal. Immortality.

We all have a shelf life, especially if we are unwilling to grow, change and adapt with our environment. Marketing, especially in the digital sphere, changes at quick speed. What once worked well, is often mere months, even weeks, later a waste of time and effort.

Many marketers who were HUGE names as little as five years ago, are now hanging on to their popularity with all they’ve got, because the platforms on which they built that popularity are not immortal either.

And when a marketer, big name or small, big name or relative unknown, makes a big time mistake, there’s just not enough power or knowledge to get them through the backlash completely unscathed. Followers are lost, shares decrease, book sales drop, etc.

Fickle, Thy Name Is Human …

I’ve often said that if we all liked the same things the world would be a very boring place. Our opinions matter and those opinions help make many a marketing name popular. Those same opinions, though, can topple a one-time great to the bottom of the heap.

Marketing, by nature is fickle, as are the eyes we hope will land on our marketing prize. We can’t guarantee a win every time. Brand advocates can become brand busters in a flash.

Putting a marketer on a pedestal can hurt both the marketer and those looking up to him/her. We all wobble, sometimes we topple, and sometimes we flat out land on our ass.

We’re not all knowing, and we’re certainly not all powerful. We have to be ready to turn around on a dime. That’s hard to do when we’re atop a pedestal expecting glowing accolades and sure support.

Temper that expectation and keep learning, evolving, adapting, testing and trying.

Death To The Marketing Is Dead Trend!

Death To The Marketing Is Dead Trend!

Do you ever feel like you’re surrounded by drama? I’m sure I do my fair share to create much of the drama that surrounds me. You certainly can’t publish snarky sentiments and expect to get off drama free.

But I often find myself scrolling through articles, mostly via Feedly or another RSS gatherer, wondering why we have to go for the dramatic when it’s less than necessary.

Death, Dying & Killing It When You Content Market!

Is it just me, or do an awful lot of marketing articles tap into the idea of killing something? And, if not that, then they’re talking about the impending death knell of a practice we’ve all come to hold dear. Anyone else notice that? Just me?

Why do we feel the need to pronounce currently accepted and still valuable practices dead in order to be provocative? Every time I turn around I’m bombarded with another announcement of imminent death…

  1. SEO Is Dead! Stick With Social!
  2. Content Marketing Is Dead! Stop Beating A Dead Horse!
  3. Facebook Is Dead! Switch Immediately To Myspace!

Okay, I admit it. I may have gone just a bit too far with that last fake headline. But I know plenty of you have seen these pronouncements populating your feed of late.

While I’m all for taking off the rose-colored glasses and looking a bit deeper to see the two sides that make up every story, I have some problems with this Chicken Little, “the sky is falling” mentality.

Several problems, actually, and what better way to share them than with a dose of my patented Simmer Down Sassy Pants snark and sass.

#1: They Tend To Be Ridiculously Premature

People have been writing about and lamenting the death of Photoshop for years. It was not too recently ramped up with the launch of Canva, the supposed “democratizer” of graphic design – seriously don’t get me started, that’s another rant entirely – anywho … where was I, oh … the death of Photoshop.

It’s not going anywhere anytime soon. Derek, my husband and partner in Go Creative Go business crime, still uses it every day. While I was never a big Photoshop fan, I’m still using Fireworks on a several times per day basis. FYI, Fireworks is another image editor/creator, optimizer owned by Adobe.

Photoshop is still available and still being updated by the fine folks at Adobe, though it’s now a cloud-based product. And, I see articles and tutorials published almost every day by fellow graphic design enthusiasts.

There’s no reason to jump ship quite yet!

#2: They’re Gimmicky!

Someone told someone else that provocative headlines were the hot ticket. Content marketing with catchy titles is the way to go.

Not so fast there, Tiger. Those are blanket statements. And you already know how I feel about blanket statements, don’t you?

Sure, the occasional provocative title will gather eyes for your well-written (we hope) content marketing prize. I’m not categorically against the pithy, the provocative. As a matter of fact, the title of this article could very easily be described as provocative, and, YES, some could say it detracts from my point. Maybe! Kinda!

Gimmicks are great in the short run, but if you don’t deliver on what’s promised they won’t reap you any rewards.

A catchy title that draws eyes CAN be great. But if those eyes aren’t delivered the promised goods and ideas, you’ve possibly lost a reader. Possibly a prospect. Maybe even a paying client!

#3: They’re Uninspired!

Bandwagon jumping is often the first sign that someone’s run out of creative mojo. When we’ve lost the ability to create something relatively new and targeted, we fall back on the standbys. The gimmicks. Click bait. Eye candy.

Again, there are times when a provocative title draws eyes to a real prize. A well crafted, ideas-full article or other form of content (podcast, infographic) that packs plenty of punch and generates real discussion.

There are some great “death to” articles that are absolutely on target and worthy of the shares the title generates. But it’s become too easy to add the word “death” to a title, and then fail to deliver on the expected punch and pithy entendre.

It’s at that point when the uninspired ruin a tactic that can be quite effective.

Death is, for all intents and purposes, permanent …

Yes, we could certainly discuss many a religious belief to the contrary, but work with me here.

Digital marketing, social media marketing, content marketing … each is equal parts fleeting and permanent. Permanent in that someone can always take a screen cap and reference your past foibles. But fleeting in that new ideas, influencers and best practices crop up every day. Dare we say every hour?

Let’s not bring pre-mature death on anything that remains useful, even for only a margin of our audience. Let’s, instead, consider how to bolster what’s flagging, how to revive what’s grown a little tired, and breathe new life into tactics and practices before we relegate them to turn to dust and blow away.

Smarter Marketing: Say No To Shortcuts!

Smarter Marketing: Say No To Shortcuts!

I can remember that, as a kid, whenever we got into the car with my parents, going on a road trip that was not part of our normal routine, we got ready for adventure. Why? It wasn’t so much that our destination was that adventurous. It was the trip itself. My dad was always looking for the perfect shortcut. The problem? They never shortened travel time. They either increased the time we spent in the car, or increased time spent in the car AND got us lost.

A funny family story, but it’s a whole different ball of wax if you’re constantly on the lookout for shortcuts as part of how you engage in marketing and running your business!

Marketing & Shortcuts Don’t Mix!

I often see the same thing happening with newer social businesses as they embark on their social media marketing journeys. The marketer, the driver of this social media or digital marketing vehicle, gets excited by apps, tools and other shortcuts “guaranteed” to increase and maintain their fan/follower/connection base in lightning quick fashion.

Unfortunately, many of these shortcuts lead that marketer on a merry chase full of wrong turns, detours and one way only avenues that end up leaving the marketing campaign and the company lost and unsure where they are or how to get home.

“With record speed” and “get it fast” are phrases bandied about by many an app/online tool developer. They’re ever ready to promise you a shortened journey, a shortcut that will make everything quick, easy and painless. The problem is that successful social endeavors require that you actively take part in the journey. Shortcuts, while seemingly faster, often take you in divergent directions that detract from the real reasons your engaging in social media and digital marketing.

Relationships Take Time!

Social media marketing is all about the relationship. And relationships can’t be rushed. They grow and change in their own unique time. Relationships that result in business are built on trust. You absolutely CANNOT rush the creation and maintenance of trust.

Shortcuts Ruin A Good Story!

Social business relies heavily on the sharing of stories rather than sales tactics, telling rather than selling. What happens when you speed through a story? What exactly was the point?  Key points get missed. The listener finds themselves unsure of the plot, the message. Sharing stories takes time.

While sharing is an integral part of social business, you can’t just share anything. It’s vital that you read and assess each item you think you might want to share. Rapid fire shares and retweets without reading often create bad business buzz. You might share a dead link, spam or worse. Do you want to be the marketer who shares information that is completely outdated or off base? I don’t think so!

Connections Count, So Take The Time To Connect Correctly!

Yes, it’s important to build a following – you want someone to see and appreciate that great information you’re creating and sharing. But you can’t rush. All likes are not created equal. Same goes for followers on Twitter and circles on Google+.

What’s the point in rushing to like hundreds of pages? Are you hoping to get several hundred likes in return. It really doesn’t work like that anymore. Same goes with connecting on Twitter. Are you all about #teamfollowback? What’s the end goal of following anyone and everyone? You might get the numbers, but will you get:

  • People who will actively take part in discussions?
  • Content worthy of sharing?
  • People willing to share your good content?

While the idea that you must follow to be followed on Twitter, or any other social media platform, is basically sound, again – you don’t want to just click the “follow” button without real intent.

Michael Hyatt states that “the higher your follower count, the more people assume you are an expert”, and therein lies the quandary for us. Do you want to be an “assumed” expert, that assumption based solely on one number? Or, would you rather be known as an expert based on the ideas, tips and tools shared? I’ll state openly that I prefer to work toward the latter.

Numbers for the sake of bigger numbers don’t have any real ROI. And yes, as much as social business is about the relationship over the sale, you have to consider and track ROI. There’s a purpose to the building of that relationship, one that your boss really wants to see well documented.

Shortcuts don’t build the types of numbers, the engaged and active communities, that help you put together the reports your boss, even if you’re the boss, wants to see. Careful planning, attention to detail and good old hard work build the relationships that build the numbers that net you positive ROI.

Skip the shortcuts and get busy creating that plan of action!

Say No To Marketing Shortcuts!

So now it’s your turn. We’re all looking to be more productive and get more done in the limited hours we’re allotted. We all have the same 24 hours in a given day. What marketing shortcuts make you mumble under your breath?

Dear Marketing Technologist: You’re Being A Twidiot!

It’s funny, but last Monday’s article, Dear Leading SEO Service Provider, wasn’t my first “open letter” response via blog post. I’ve actually written a few of them over the years, and they tend to generate some interest and get a little discussion going within the comments.

I was, however, thrilled with the response to my latest open letter style and as I was speeding through my feeds recently I came across another terrifying tactic that I immediately decided needed to be dealt with in the same fashion.

Before I start, let me define one of the words in the title. A Twidiot is a Twitter idiot. Just in case there was any confusion.

Okay, the instigator of this open letter decrying terrible Twitter tactics showed up in my mentions late last week. As I monitor my mentions pretty carefully, because I want to thank those who share my articles and also want to actually talk to my connections, I saw this and clicked through to check out who exactly had mentioned me.

First red flag? No following on either side of the relationship. That means I’m not following him, he’s not following me. Just a small red flag, not waving a pennant. Maybe this marketing technologist wants to start a dialogue.

Second red flag? The tweet wasn’t a question, comment or compliment (generally the three ways most of us start a discussion on Twitter). It was a link.

Of course I clicked the link. If I hadn’t, this article would never have happened. The link led me to a landing page. If I signed up for it, I’d receive a link to view an email all about personalizing in order to better suit the needs of my clients and prospects.

That’s when my Simmer Down Sassy Pants antennae really started buzzing.

REALLY! You’re going to try to sell me on personalizing my marketing efforts when you’ve done nothing to make a personal connection with me?

Personalization in Marketing Requires You To Act Like A Person!

Once I saw the link, I decided to dig a little deeper. First, I checked to make sure this specific marketing enthusiast actually worked for the company in question. He does.

Then I took a close look at his stream, and was not too shocked to find that he:

  1. Sent out over 60 tweets per hour
  2. All tweets contained one handle and a link
  3. All of those links went to his company site

Wait! There’s more. Mr. Marketing Technologist sent out the same three tweets, with only the handle changed, over and Over and OVER again. No changes, except the Twitter handle. Along with the “personalization” video, this guy sent links to:

  • an SEO eCommerce guide
  • a video that detailed the many different ways a certain group of individuals described a red dress

Getting To My Marketing Point, Already!

So, this is obviously spam via Twitter. And really no different than email spam, Linkedin spam or Google+ community spam. Spam is spam is spam, it only differs in the delivery.

Maybe it’s just me, but shouldn’t a company trying to showcase itself as an authority on personalization actually personalize their marketing message? Maybe spend a little time on building real connections that might turn into leads, prospects and customers?

I monitored this Twitter account all weekend. The 60 posts per our wasn’t a tech glitch. The same posting pattern continued throughout the weekend with the same three rotating tweets. No changes. Over the weekend this equaled thousands of tweets, each mentioning a different Twitter handle.

Funnily enough, the follower numbers didn’t change at all. No new connections were made based on these scintillating tweets. SHOCKER!

Summing It Up, FINALLY!

While marketing and technology, especially in the form of smart and personalized marketing automation, do actually go together, I don’t think our marketing technologist friend got the right message. When you forget that marketing, especially via social channels, is about creating and maintaining relationships you might soon find yourself swimming in seas that foster spam.

Technology should assist in your marketing efforts, not override them in a bid to send out an endless stream of tweets that detracts from your brand’s real message and makes you look like a Twidiot!

Your Turn!

What kinds of bad online marketing behavior have invaded your digital space recently? We’d love to talk to you about it!

SHOCKER: Social Media Marketing Is HARD!

I sometimes get a little disgruntled with all of the assertions that social media, more specifically social media marketing, isn’t hard. In fact, we’re ever so often told that it’s quite easy.

As an aside, I agree with the premise that part of social media marketing involves being social and, in and of itself, being social isn’t particularly difficult unless you’re a recluse or suffer from a seriously bad attitude. But if we don’t take it a little further that would mean that a social nature is all that’s required to be a success at social media marketing.

SCREEEEEEEEEEEEECH. Sigh. That’s a big old scratch on the vinyl record that is my social media marketing mojo. OUCH.

It takes a little more than a sunny and social disposition to effectively monitor, manage, connect and engage across social platforms.

Sure, the ability to either be social or, at the very least, act socially if you aren’t really feeling it at the time, is a must. However, it’s a slap in the face when I see anyone – especially a social media marketing professional, proclaim that social media is EASY, that all it takes is being social.


How about the ability to quickly read and assess the articles of those in your feeds and connected circles? Don’t you have to do this in order to best share the content that will best suit the needs and interests of your audience?

Or, what about the ability to repurpose content for different platforms, each of which require specific and unique intent and purpose. Do you think that might be important?

Do you have the tools in place to effectively monitor and manage your presence across a variety of social media channels? It’s not particularly social to miss out on a share or a message because you’d don’t have the means to monitor notifications.

Can you write? Do you have the ability to take the glimmer of an idea and transform it into a short snippet (in say, less than 140 characters for Twitter)? Can you stretch it out for Facebook or Google+? Do you have the ability to create content that draws attention to your own website, the digital real estate you actually own. Those who are truly successful social media marketers know that your hub has to be stronger than any social media outpost.

I could go on and on and talk about measuring ROI, cultivating great connections, taking part in online events, time management, etc. I don’t think I really need to belabor my point, here.

If you’ve spent any time at all carefully cultivating a list of influential social media marketers, you’ve probably heard of Jay Baer. While you might not take what I say as gospel, many in the social media marketing industry are inclined to take what Jay has to say seriously. He agrees with me, that effective presence and success on social media platforms isn’t all that easy: Nobody Said Social Media Should Be Simple.

To put an end to this in brief, here’s my summary:

1. While a social nature or the ability to be social certainly helps when you’re considering taking on social media marketing, be it for yourself or for a client …

2. A social nature is only the tip of the iceberg when it comes to managing and maintaining a successful social presence. It’s hard work that requires a diverse and strong skillset.

Chime in. What makes you a social media standout? Or what part of social media marketing have you found the most difficult?

Social Media Marketing: Do You Choose Quickly Over Quality?

Social Media Marketing: Do You Choose Quickly Over Quality?

How to articles often sprinkle, or sometimes spread thick with a trowel, the words “quickly” and “easily”. I often wonder if our desire to do EVERYTHING quickly and easily will at some point create a quality crux that damages our brand or business.

At least once a week, it seems, if not more often, we see a story go viral about how a brand or business managed to mess up via social media. Fairly often the uproar has been caused by the reaction or lack of reaction to a customer service issue. Outages and issues arise, especially in digital business and how we handle those outages and disruptions requires that we remain in tune with our audience.

I often find that the hustle to get out a message quickly, without the proper care to actually answering the questions in the complaints, can cause more problems than it manages to alleviate.

Consider this, you’re dealing with an already upset customer or client. If you don’t carefully craft your response, you have the potential for further damage to a relationship that’s already teetering on the brink of disaster. Speak too quickly, without the proper empathy and without a real answer or solution and you’re responding only to respond, rather than to aid in a real and positive result.

Canned responses or even in-real-time responses that sound canned aren’t social. They’re a rote response, not a service or product provider working to aid a client in need.

Quickly can be effective, but it can’t be by rote or canned. It has to be catered specifically to the consumer and the specific issue. While our clients and followers expect a reply within what they consider to be a “realistic” time frame (and this varies from person to person), it’s harder to deal with the backlash of a less than stellar quickie response than it is to take the time to craft a response that actually assists those dealing with the pain point that caused the complaint or query.

It’s a quality over quantity thing. Social media marketing is all about quality. Broadcasting or firehosing is about quantity. Which will you choose in the future?

Better Business Love: You’re Not A Robot!

Better Business Love: You're Not A Robot!

If you love what you do, you’ll never work a day in our life!

I’m sorry, but to resort to some pre-Super Bowl football language, I’m going to have to throw a flag on that play!

I absolutely, without doubt, every ding-danged day – LOVE what I do for a living. Owning my own business means I that I engage in what I call “better business.” I get up and go right to it most mornings. But, yes – there’s a but …

I work my proverbial pardukey off each and every day, including evenings, weekends, holidays and sometimes while I’m on vacation. Working hard, working long hours, building your business – they’re part of loving what you do, part of building that better business! Sometimes I work through illness and sometimes I have to cancel fun plans to meet deadlines or to keep on track with monthly tasks, reporting and goals. I still love what I do, but I do, occasionally, have to give things up.

It’s the me that I put into the effort that makes me love what I do, what I produce. My love for what I do doesn’t control me, or automate my actions. My love for what I do allows me to better control my business. I make decisions, some more difficult than others. I don’t just forge forward each day on the same path, automatic, automated and robotic.

We’re not robots, we’re human beings. We get tired, some days we’re feeling more up or decidedly more down than others. We get sick, get the sniffles, have bad hair and pajama days as we settle in front of the computer. This, our humanity, is what we pour into our businesses.

Sometimes we get angry, sometimes we get snarky, sometimes we get sarcastic. While we don’t want to let these feelings pour unabated into our business, the occasional sharing of our “human side” can actually appeal to present and potential clients.

Just as you wouldn’t automate everything you share via social media, you can’t automate everything about yourself when you’re running a business. To say “you’ll never work a day in your life” if you love what you do demeans that love. Because we go all out, give our best and make the most effort when we’re really into something, when we really love what we do.

Hopefully this is another ridiculous blanket statement debunked.