SEO & Social Media Transform Contacts To Customers
As an SEO/Social Media Consultant in SW Florida a large part of my job is to observe, analyze, and make determinations on not just the algorithms that determine relative placement of businesses on the search engine results pages, but also, which platforms, social media sites, keywords, and type of content can best evoke a positive reaction from potential clients. I make it a point to make use of every practical opportunity to attend local civic and networking events to strengthen and build upon the relationships and connections I have made online, and that has been very productive, not only for business purposes but for social purposes as well. An unexpected benefit of my strategy has been the opportunity to watch, listen, and consider the interactions of relatively large groups of business people that became acquainted online, met in person as a result, and formed, at the same time, both personal and professional collaborative alliances as a result. These individuals seemed to bond, trust, and rely on each other far more quickly than would have been “normal” 10 years ago, it was apparent social media had much to do with the trend, but, the how and why eluded me.
One particular evening, while dining with my wife, I casually remarked that a friend of mine had met President Obama. She asked me who that was, and when I told her she replied “I’ve never heard that name before” … of course she hadn’t … this was a relatively new online friend, we had never met but HAD friended, followed, and promoted each other reciprocally across a wide expanse of social media sites. In many ways … she was a better friend than many of the people I’ve known all my life! She had gone out of her way to do something useful to me! The way I worded my statement, and my wife’s response was my first insight into the answer I’d sought. I started listening to people’s conversations a little closer … and what I heard were things like …
“Thanks for telling me about that book”
“I didn’t tell anyone, but, I did tweet about it”
“I saw you in your new car”
“I didn’t buy a car, I posted a pic on Facebook of a car I wanted to buy”
“I heard you got a promotion”
“I’ve been keeping that a secret … you must have seen it on Linkedin”
The more I observed exchanges of this sort it became clear they were occurring all around me … every day! Although I am not a psychologist, have no training on the subject, and no degree, it seemed obvious to me that …
THE SUBCONSCIOUS MIND HAS DIFFICULTY DIFFERENTIATING BETWEEN ONLINE & PHYSICAL INTERACTION!
When an online friend shares an experience … you experience it with them, it evokes an emotional response.
If they tell a funny joke …you laugh out loud!
If they speak of injustice … you get angry!
If they share a sad story … tears well up in your eyes!
If someone doesn’t respond to your friend request … you feel rejected!
The extent to which an online post, share, or response impacts you on an emotional level appears to directly affect the ability, willingness, and extent to which we allow people past our psychological defenses. If our online experiences with an individual have been positive and rewarding, and then we meet them and find them to be much the same as we perceived them to be through our social media interactions, all of the preliminary “legwork” in building the relationship is done! Strong friendships can be established in the space of a half an hour because it “feels” like you have known each other much longer! This seems to apply whether the relationship is person to person, business to business, or business to client. I have witnessed individuals pointing to a logo and make the comment …
“…I know him … he’s a great guy“
The time is upon us when customer’s are rejecting more traditional forms of advertising, researching products and services like never before, and want to make purchases they can feel good about! Businesses and owners now have the opportunity, through social media, to forge new relationships and generate positive responses in their potential clients long before they ever meet in person. The companies that succeed in years to come are likely to be those that understand their customer’s wants, meet their expectations, and have a thorough understanding of the psychological impact social media has upon them.