If you’re like me and don’t know many tradespeople through word of mouth, no longer do you scan the Yellow Pages to find a local gardener.
The first thing you do is to google the gardening company you memorised from the back of that van while you were stuck in traffic. On most occasions the search turns up nothing more than a dull listing on yell.com. Maybe that’s enough for some people? I mean it says here that they “maintain and clear gardens”, so that should be enough, right? Wrong.
Today’s customers do their research before picking up the phone. They want reviews, before and after photographs, to talk with someone directly through an online messenger, know the costs upfront, pay on card, maybe see a jolly, friendly and reliable source on social media.
If a brand wants to keep up with this changing terrain, they need to up their game and understand that brands are no longer represented by their products or services, but the people who surround them.
Armies of bloggers are the first to spread the word about the latest strobing bar or the yummiest peanut butter brand on the market. Not that relevant for the topic of garden maintenance, but one bad review on social media can turn swathes of people away from your page, hindering your businesses reputation.
Staying offline or limiting your brand to the confines of your shop front or listing catalogue could be very harmful, as customers just aren’t considering your service in the online spaces they’re inhabiting.
Social media is the stage for your brand. People can come and simply watch the show, or they can be instantly involved by liking, commenting and sharing.
Facebook Live and Periscope are opening even more transparent barriers between brands and audiences. Deliveroo’s latest campaign featured culinary maestro Jamie Oliver reading out people’s names who were lucky enough to have won a free lunch in cities across the UK.
To my shame, I sat for an hour earnestly waiting for Jamie to call my name, but alas it wasn’t to be. My disappointing Deliveroo-less experience aside, this shows how immersive brands can be.
Customers don’t just buy into your product or service, they buy into your image, reputation, fan base, communities and conversations… And when it’s really good, they hang on to every word you say.
Entering the world of social media can be daunting. Standing on an empty stage looking out onto your tiny fan base, deciding how you’re going to entertain them, keep them engaged and attract a bigger audience can seem impossible. Let alone measuring, responding, optimising and making sure your activity keeps pace with the growth of your business.
Great strategies incorporate images and videos – relevant content that gives your audience a reason to offer their engagement.
Here at myclever, we want to see challenger brands (and gardeners) setting the bar high on social. Getting excited about building and maintaining an inimitable – and lucrative – social media presence. From regular posting and paid advertisement, to global social campaigns and microsites that enrich the whole brand experience.
If you want to take things to the next level, let us know @mycleveragency.