Question: I own a marketing consulting business that focuses on strategy, positioning and branding for a variety of clients. I have one client (healthcare valuation business) that is convinced he doesn’t need social marketing. He says all of business come by referrals, e.g. attorneys. Is there a social marketing tool or process that I can utilize to prove to him that healthcare valuation firms generate business through social online media?
Answer: We don’t know what we aren’t getting. We don’t know the customers we aren’t getting through social media because we aren’t using it. We don’t know the customers we aren’t getting because we aren’t using the Yellow Pages. Etc., etc.
Ask him how he got his FIRST referral? Ask him how he FINDS products? Does he always use referrals, or ever use the Yellow Pages (he sounds old school). Ask him to survey his customers, do they use Twitter, Facebook, Yelp, Google Places? At some level, he has to open his mind to the fact that some people might get to him NOT through referrals.
I personally think referrals are vastly, vastly overrated, as is word of mouth. It’s important, no doubt, but hard to influence directly, and the ignition point is often something else. You know – you need a spark, a match to start a forest fire. They don’t just “start”.
How do you convince someone like this? If they are open: EXPERIMENT. Run Google Analytics, on the website and chart inbound search activity to GOALS / actions. If they are not OPEN to experiments, convinced of sily things like no one uses Google, no one uses Facebook, Yelp, (fill in the blank), run the other way – fast.
Some people just arrogantly assume that they know it all. You can’t really do much with some of them. There’s nothing like the power of a closed mind.
Got a question? Click this link to email Jason or call 888-993-1122. Dr. Jason McDonald is founder and Senior SEO / Social Media Director of the JM Internet Group. He teaches the SEO training classes for the group, and therefore provides most of the SEO tips for this blog. His goal with this blog is to provide an easy 'one-stop shop' for the busy marketer looking for tips, tricks, and secrets on how to get to the top of Google and Bing for free using proven SEO tactics. When not dreaming up SEO tips, Dr. McDonald lives in the San Francisco Bay Area with his wife, two dogs, a cat, four iguanas and twelve children (just kidding). Really you read down to the bio on this guy? Enjoy the blog.
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