Copy and the Customer Journey

Bubba, the brand Buddha was pontificating as I slid into my seat. “Tain’t always what you say that matters, It’s what people hear.”

“What people believe already can be a big chunk of that,” I agreed. (I’m Jerry Fletcher and I’m the Watson of this unruly crew that meets over lunch on Fridays.) Customer Journey Map

“What people believe can make a real difference whether you’re talking printing or politics,” said Kate. “I’ve been in sales since I was teenager and both learning the right language to use and teaching folks to understand how important it is has been difficult for me.

Never let anyone tell you there aren’t different dialects in America. There are racial differences, geographic differences, class differences, age differences and where folks are in the customer journey differences. You can’t just blather along. You’ll never make a sale if you aren’t listening and using their words, viewpoints and meanings. You have to talk to them where they are now, in the moment.”

“Got an example?” Chris asked.

She asked him, “Did you ever go to Las Vegas?”

“Sure,” he replied. “It’s the gaming capital of the Universe.”

“And there’s your answer, plainer’n a cake donut with pink icing and sprinkles,” said Bubba.

Chris looked at him completely non-plussed.

“Think about what you just said,” continued Rob in his typical molasses patience voice. You said gaming. That word never was used in the old days as a reference to Vegas or Atlantic City before all the Indian Casinos and the ones on steamboats docked in Mississippi.

Back in the 1970’s Wall Street shifted from calling it the gambling industry to the gaming industry. By the 1990’s only politicians called it Gambling. For a time Las Vegas was promoted as a family vacation spot. Now it’s a little naughtier, you know, what happens in Vegas stays in Vegas.”

Folks heard the new word and over time the industry was perceived differently.”

The donut demo
“Let me use that donut idea to demonstrate how this works for Chris,” I said. People go through a number of phases where we can change how they think about a company or product or service:

  1. Awareness
  2. Consideration
  3. Intent
  4. Purchase
  5. Satisfaction
  6. Repeat

At every point on that spectrum you can provide content that will convince, persuade and keep them in your funnel even after they buy.”

Ramping it up
Rob jumped back in saying, “But y’all are mostly working on the front end of that process so you should know how to ramp up there first:

  • Awareness—Listen for the symptoms. Find out how it’s pushin’ on their business. Now, take it a step further and figure out the problem and help ‘em understand it in that larger context.
  • Consideration—This phase is when they’re bangin’ around looking for information Build strategic website pages or videos or blogs or other kinds of content that homes in on the clear ways you can solve specific kinds of prospect’s problems. The more directly it responds to their need the better.
  • Intent— is when they have come to the point where they intend to make a purchase. The information you provide at this point in their path to purchase should include examples of how others have profited from your product or service, that’s hard data, analytics that prove your point but most importantly. Make sure it fits with your earlier information. Include first hand suggestions, observations and comments.”

The Takeaways:

The customer journey or path to purchase doesn’t end when they plunk down the cash.

You have to prove that you know their concerns and interests.

The clincher is most often the small detail that you’ve observed from their questions, or observations they make. Always ask why they selected your product or service.

Jerry Fletcher’s blog recaps conversations with clients, prospects and the unruly mob of business development professionals he consorts with. They discuss marketing that works from solopreneur to enterprise level. Jerry, The Consultant’s Communication Consultant, is the ringleader and “Watson” of the dialogue. Sign up for the blog and other publications at:

Jerry has been researching and implementing small business marketing that builds businesses, careers and lives of joy for 25 years as President of Z-axis Marketing, Inc. Learn more at

Schedule a personal appearance. Jerry speaks internationally on Networking, Marketing and Contact Relationship Magic.


The Power of a Personal Touch

As I put my laptop on the table and fired it up, Chris asked, “Should I go get some popcorn for movie time?”

Gail our resident good-mannered grammarian said, “You know, for a digital marketing type you know how video has become so pervasive, it seems to me that you might have a little more patience if not respect.”

Pesonal Touch VideoVIEW
“Easy,” I said. “I brought this along so all of you could comment on a video I edited this morning. It’s about trust. I’ve done a couple speeches recently and I was reviewing the video of them and thought it might be helpful to people to see how you can handle the same material with no technology or a full tilt animated Power Point. I just cut part of the two different appearances together.”

Rob, aka the Brand Buddha welcomed the opportunity to niggle me saying, “Minds me of the way gramps ‘splained the difference between a Yankee fairy tale and one from Dixie: Up north it starts out Once upon a time… Down home it’s you ain’t gonna believe this…”

Kate turned to him and said, “Even I couldn’t sell that notion without looking at the video. You know he’s been talkin’ about Trust on three continents for a lot of years. Besides, I think the presentation differences may be the point he’s making but first we have to watch.”

Bubba replied, “Crank that thing up Fletch and let’s have a look at A Personal Touch.

About 9 minutes later it was quiet at the table.

Then Kate said, “I love the pearl at the end. The video works. I kind of like the way it goes back and forth. The message comes through either way.”

Gail agreed. She pointed out, “If there were no live sequences the Power Point with voice over would tell the story but wouldn’t be as friendly or real or powerful.”

Chris said, “And that is the point. Video we keep being told is the most powerful way to get a point across no matter where someone is on the pathway to purchase. Yes it is powerful but the real power comes from giving it a personal touch.”

Fletch just smiled.

The Takeaways:

A personal touch is the shortcut to trust.

The more personal a video is the more powerful the message.

What you show is important. What you say is critical. But the most important thing is who trusts you.

Jerry Fletcher’s blog recaps conversations with clients, prospects and the unruly mob of business development professionals he consorts with. They discuss marketing that works from solopreneur to enterprise level. Jerry, The Consultant’s Communication Consultant, is the ringleader and “Watson” of the dialogue. Sign up for the blog and other publications at:

Jerry has been researching and implementing small business marketing that builds businesses, careers and lives of joy for 25 years as President of Z-axis Marketing, Inc. Learn more at

Schedule a personal appearance. Jerry speaks internationally on Networking, Marketing and Contact Relationship Magic.

The Expert Content Formula

“I’ve been thinking about last week’s guest, “I said.

Chris, our Digital Marketing expert, asked, “Why’s that? Jennifer was delighted with our help.”

“All of us gave her good advice I think,” said Gail. “Each time we have a guest it seems like all of us learn as well. It makes the session a little more focused and each of us tries to be more concise. I try to concentrate on writing and editing advice and each of you dive into your individual expertise.”

“Thas true,” said Rob with a dollop of southern syrup. “Y’all expect me to concentrate on Brand at those times so that’s what I do.”

Rick, Mr. Direct Marketing, as usual, direct in every way said, “So why were you thinking about Jennifer and content?

I responded, “She’s an expert, right?”

There were nod’s and sounds of agreement around the table.

The Complex simplified“So if you’re an expert, my research suggests that the way you market depends on the phase your business is in: Startup, Growth or Established. We didn’t take the time to figure that out.   Early on the critical elements are Networking and Direct Contacts. When consultants get to the Growth Phase there’s more of a balance. Referrals become dominant but are closely followed by Direct Sales, Prior Experience and Networking. In the established firm Referrals and prior experience account for about 65% of the business.”

Kate, our sales doyen who knows how to listen asked, “So are you saying we somehow let Jennifer down? I think there’s another way we could have been more cogent for her. There’s research from Hinge that shows the impact of most of the content techniques used by experts are separated by less than two percentage points. She pulled a whitepaper from her oversize bag and read:

  • Books 8.1%
  • Speaking (non-keynotes) 7.3%
  • Keynote 7.2%
  • Company Website 7.1%
  • Blogs 8%
  • Articles 6.4%
  • E-mail Marketing 6.3%
  • SEO 6.3%
  • Regular Column 6.1%
  • Personal Website 6.0%

There all pretty much the same. And notice there is no social media in that list.”

“True,” Rick said, “In addition, I can guarantee you that speaking is the most powerful if you can do it well.”

“I think you’re right,” I said. “In both my personal and consulting experience speaking is the single most powerful way to reach a large audience with a personal touch. If you do it well it is the one activity that creates Referrals and Word of Mouth for you in a way none of the other possibilities can.

Kate nodded and added, “there’s one more thing I read in the research that Jennifer should know:

When buyers were asked what convinced them someone was an expert over a third of them answered,

The ability to make complex topics simple.”

The Takeaway

To stand out as an expert make complex topics simple and do it in front of large numbers of people via speaking, a book and regularly released materials.


Jerry Fletcher’s blog recaps conversations with clients, prospects and the unruly mob of business development professionals he consorts with. They discuss marketing that works from solopreneur to enterprise level. Jerry Fletcher is the ringleader and “Watson” of the dialogue. Look at the blog at:

Jerry has been researching and implementing small business marketing that builds businesses, careers and lives of joy for 25 years as President of Z-axis Marketing, Inc. Learn more at

Schedule a personal appearance. Jerry speaks internationally on Networking, Marketing and Contact Relationship Magic.





Marketing In An Age Of Simultaneity

“It’s morphing again,” Bubba said as he lowered himself into a side chair.

Robot juggler“You are the branding Guru” said Rick,” but sometimes you are more than a little mysterious my friend. What the heck are you talking about?”

“Marketing and ‘bout everythin’ else,” Rob responded.

“So,” Kate said, “does that include sales?”

Rob drawled, “If you can’t run with the big dogs, these days y’all gonna have to stay on the porch.”

“Rob,” I said, “back up and tell us what got you all stirred up.”

“Look around the table,” he said. “Ain’t a one of you that does just one thing anymore.

Rick is a statistical whiz which is why he’s so good at direct marketing. And on top of that he can network his way to new business pitch standing in line at an airport check in counter!

Gail, writes, edits, teaches others to do it and has been an on-air personality and run a couple of ad agencies.

Kate can consult in a boardroom in the morning and go out and make cold calls with a newbie in the afternoon and then make a speech in the evening.

Chris writes code plus drives a digital marketing team that has built a business to twice what it used to be and he dabbles in real estate because he likes the investment opportunities and making houses better.

Fletch has a degree in design but managed ad agencies and PR firms. He’s an expert at positioning, CRM and automated marketing and speaks on three continents on networking. Somehow he explains what Rick does.

And we are not unusual. Like a lot of folks we do all that stuff simultaneously!”

Gail interjected, “So what is bothering you Rob?”

Rob replied, “Used to be y’all could be a writer or a coder or a single whatever. Today to be say a reporter you have to blog, tweet, video the event or the interview, photograph it, edit it and serve it up in multiple forms all of which require some expertise.”

Kate said, “I see what you mean. Most of us have been successful because we can do multiple things reasonably well rather than just a single thing.”

“But it’s more than that,” Chris noted. “That multiple expertise is what used to make us stand out but I think Bubba is saying that it is now the new marketing norm.”

“Y’all got it,” digital dude. “If you’re fixin’ to get into the business or you are ready to break out you’d best be adding some skills that match up with what you do or take it ‘round a corner folks haven’t connected yet.”

Gail said, “I’ll translate:

The Takeaway

Being good at one thing is not good enough anymore. You need to match your primary skill with a couple more that give you more insight and a greater spectrum of bankable capabilities.


This blog recaps the luncheon conversations of a group of business development professionals. They discuss what’s new, what’s old, what’s good, bad and ugly plus creative thinking to find what works. Jerry Fletcher is the fictions ringleader and secretary.

Jerry has been researching and implementing small business marketing that builds businesses, careers and lives of joy for 20 years as President of Z-axis Marketing, Inc. Learn more at

Schedule a personal appearance. Jerry speaks internationally on Networking, Marketing and Contact Relationship Magic.

How To Be A Brilliant Conversation Networker

Brilliant Conversation Networking“I spoke to a group about the Secrets of a Marketing Rainmaker on Wednesday. I used the write up about what it takes to be a stellar networker by being a brilliant conversationalist as one of my giveaways,” I said.

Chris asked, “Did you offer it as an incentive for filling out your feedback form like I’ve seen you do?

“Yes,’ I said, that is a trick I picked up from another professional speaker.”

Rob, the branding guru from Georgia, drawled, “Y’all know he does that right in the middle to shake ‘em up and make ‘em want that idear for their very own. It’s his way of gettin’ the dogs out from under the porch.”

“Fletch,” Kate asked, “Can you translate that?”

“Sure,” I said, “Rob’s idea of being a brilliant conversationalist is being the center of attention. For him, that works. For the really good networker there’s another way.”

“Oh?” Kate said.

“Yes,” I responded

The table went quiet. They were all looking at me.

I said, “Tell ‘em, Kate.”

Kate explained, “It’s a technique I came across in some sales training done by Xerox in the 90s, I think. What you do is:

  1. Ask an open ended question, one that can’t be answered with just a word or two.
  2. Shut up and listen.
  3. When they run down simply say Oh?”

“Oh? “ I said.

She went on, “They will keep adding information just about as long as you are willing to listen. The trick is to get them started.”

Rick dove in, “And the most common question in our culture is what do you do? And the best way to answer it is in Fletch’s 30 Second Marketing.”

“Give the man a gold star,” said Kate. “Anyone else have a question that works?”

Rick, our inveterate traveler, said, “I’ve got another one—If you could visit any place in the world, where would you go?”

“That works,” said Kate, “If you remember to say Oh?”

Gail piped up, “If you could have any technology to help you run our business, what would it be?”

“Sure,” said Kate. “Again, remember when they run down to say Oh?”

The takeaway: Ask an open-ended question and listen. When they run down just say “oh?” to learn more.

What question would you ask?

This blog recaps the luncheon conversations of a group of business development professionals. They discuss what’s new, what’s old, what’s good, bad and ugly but mostly what works. Jerry Fletcher is the ringleader and the one that writes up their comments.

Jerry Fletcher provides this kind of proven marketing advice to all his clients from across kitchen tables to corporate board rooms. See his answer to “What do you do” in the video on the home page of:

Jerry speaks on 30 Second Marketing, How to develop an unforgettable self introduction. See his story about Margie at

Building Blocks of a Successful Sales Pitch

Building Blocks of Successful Sales Pitch“Martin called me Tuesday to let me know two things:
1. Prototypes of his new product will be available next week.
2. They changed the name of the company based on the suggestion I made for a URL in a planning meeting. Needless to say, I never had that in mind but…”

Rick, our Direct marketing guru, interjected,” Back up. Who is Martin and what is the product and why the name change?”

Kate, Madame sales, said, “And what does all this have to do with a successful sales pitch?”

“I was meeting with Martin and his partner, I replied. “They were updating me on the product development and timing for final prototypes. I asked what they were going to call the product.

When they told me I jumped on it and asked if they had purchased the URL.”

“Good idea,” said Chris our resident digital marketing director. “It can kill you if you can’t use a URL for a product that is the same as the name. If you can, it gives you real advantages. The biggest one is that owning the URL is, in terms of marketing, sometimes more valuable than having a registered trademark.”

“Right,” I agreed. “What happened was that Martin pulled out his smart phone, checked on availability of the URL and bought it in less time than it takes to talk about it. Because the name can easily be put into a catch phrase I suggested how to use it in presentations they have coming up for acquiring more capital for the business. I never thought they would change the name of the company.”

“Could y’all slow down a tinch,” said Rob our branding Guru. I’m gettin’ all tangled up in product names and URLs and Company names and I still don’t have a clue how we gonna get a sales pitch outa this briar patch.”

“Well, Bubba,” I said, I can’t tell you the names because I’ve signed a non-disclosure agreement but I can give you an illustration of how it works. Let’s say your product name is the Real Thing. It’s easy to tell somebody to ‘get the Real Thing.’ I’ve found that anytime you’re doing a presentation where you are trying to sell something it is a good idea to give people a simple summation of what you are asking them to do throughout the presentation. By incorporating the same catch phrase from beginning to end you give the audience a way to remember you and to agree on the action to take.”

Kate said, “You have a point, cowboy, it isn’t subtle but incorporating a repetitive phrase in a presentation particularly to a boardroom full of people can work wonders. But I’ve found it is even more powerful when you combine it with what makes the product unique. I think you call that Positioning, don’t you?”

Gail jumped in saying, “As the writer I have to say that positioning can make my job easier. If I can tell the people that get the greatest good from a product how it uniquely fits into their need or use or occasion it is a lot easier to make the sale in print or video.”

I said, “You’re absolutely right. Sometimes there is a real difference. Other times it is a perceived difference. For instance, do you want your car repaired with replacement or genuine parts? Would you prefer a clone or the real thing? Do you want the one that can sort of do what you want or the one that is optimized? Positioning can give you that advantage in the marketplace.

Bubba said, “And that all stacks up to build a better brand.”

The Takeaway Build a repetitive phrase that incorporates your name and positioning into sales presentations to achieve greater success.

Get a FREE copy of the ABCs of Marketing Without Money TM. Go to and we will send you a link to get your copy.


This blog recaps the luncheon conversations of a group of business development professionals. They discuss what’s new, what’s old, what’s good, bad and ugly but mostly what works. Jerry Fletcher is the ringleader and the one that writes up their comments.

Jerry has been researching and implementing small business marketing that builds businesses, careers and lives of joy for 20 years as President of Z-axis Marketing, Inc. Learn more at

Schedule a personal appearance. Jerry speaks internationally on Networking, Marketing and Contact Relationship Magic.

How To Shape A Marketing Mindset

Karen and I were chatting over coffee the other day and I realized that not every small business operator is in a sales or marketing mode at all times.

Woman developing marketing mindsetChris, young but wise in all things digital asked, “What do you mean?”

“She was telling me about speaking at an industry event and how it had gone.”

Kate interjected, “And she got no sales and no leads, am I right?”

“Yes, Madam Sales, you have put your finger on the problem. What would you recommend?”

Kate took a sip of ice tea and said, “It’s a matter of mindset. You need to decide what the single most important outcome needs to be for you on any day in any situation.”

Rick said, “That’s one thing we do when we build a direct marketing campaign. We try to anticipate what a prospect might do and provide ways to overcome objections, pull them back to considering our solution and give them some reason to buy in. Is that what you mean?”

“Sounds like you have to do it for life,” said Chris.

“Yes and no,” I said. “My friend Karen was unhappy. The first thing I asked her was what she expected to get out of it. She hadn’t thought about it! Then I got her to think through what she would have done differently if she had thought it through. Here’s what she came up with:

  1. Figure out just what you’d like to get from the overall situation and this piece of it.
  2. Act on it. Do what will get you to your goal without damaging the relationship.
  3. Do it again situation by situation.

I call it being true to your mission. When you know why you are in business all you have to do is look at a task or decision and if it keeps you on mission it is the right thing to do. It is the marketing mindset that will make you successful.

“Sounds like branding to me,” said Rob. “Y’all can’t know every situation your brand is going to get into but you do know what you want it to stand for with the folks that are rubbin’ up against it. That doesn’t change so long as you’re true to what they believe you to be. But if you go kiting off in all directions or you don’t pay attention to being just one thing you’re gonna’ get ditched and that ain’t pretty!”

“You’re right Bubba,” said Kate. The difficulty is going from the way most people operate almost on remote control to a focus on what is happening in the moment and putting all their cognitive capabilities into play to get to the goal set. “

“That isn’t easy”, I said.

“And it can’t be done overnight,” Gail, our resident writer joined in. That old saw about it taking at least 30 days to change a habit is true and when you’re dealing with a behavior like this the recidivism rate is over the top.”

“Didn’t I just say it isn’t easy.” I asked.

“Not as eloquently,” said Bubba.

Kate said, “If you want to act intentionally ask yourself one question as you begin any task: Why am I doing this? If you don’t have an answer, you are coasting. Stop.

Re-read what Karen came up with. Take a little time to think through what your mission in life is. You have a mission, don’t you?”


Our Mission: Deliver the marketing knowledge that makes it possible for the “Little Guys” to go it alone… successfully. Learn more at:

Jerry has spoken professionally on three continents. His hard-earned expertise is in three business development specialties: Personal Networking, Marketing and Contact Relationship “Magic”. Jerry’s speaking site is:

Why Speaking Is Potent Small Business Marketing

Jerry Fletcher, Speaking in Colombia“I get paid 2 ways for speaking,” I said.

Rob, our Georgia peach branding guru, drawled, “Yassuh, too much and way too much.”

“Bubba,” said Kate, coming to my defense, “You are way out of line on that one. I saw him a couple weeks ago and by the time he packed up his computer and took some overtime questions the meeting planner had enough positive feedback to ask him to schedule them for next year. He can be difficult I know but he’s a real pro on the platform.”

“Thanks Kate,” I said. “The two ways I was about to mention were:

  • A chance to sell a concept, or approach, a solution or a scenario that can lead to a product or service sale
  • A check for becoming more of an expert.”

Chris, our young digital mastermind grumbled, “The problem is I’ve seen people at small conferences that were doing straight sales pitches instead of providing some information I could use.”

Kate responded, “That is a problem. But once you figure out how to make send the audience away glad they saw you, speaking is one potent sales and marketing tool.”

Bubba said, “Potent like how? Is it like one of those Long Island Ice Teas or more like some of those corn squeezin’s from the south forty?”

Mr. Direct Marketing, Rick couldn’t resist. He lifted his glass, looked through the liquor at Bubba and said huskily, “It’s potent like a brand that has been tenderly fermented, aged in oak and then poured from aloft splashing and frothing into the light.”

Gail, the resident writer began clapping and the others joined in. She said, as things quieted down, “Speaking gets you in front of a crowd of people that want to see you, want to hear what you have to say and now consider you an expert simply because you accepted an invitation to share your insights.”

“That, is one superb reason,” I said. “Even if a small business owner or entrepreneur is not being paid for being there, getting in front of a bunch of potential customers is wonderful.

Most of us fill up our days doing what must be done. But when a speech is imminent we shift gears and begin taking the ideas we’ve been working through for days or months or years and start refining them.

Learning kicks in at a higher rate as well. We discover that we now understand better because we have to be able to convey the information more effectively.

But there is another reason that maybe just as important.


Think of it. There are 50 or 100 of them in the room that you don’t have to chase down in a series of cold calls and appointments and visits. Getting to talk to that crowd is a real time saver and increases your potential sales geometrically.”

It’s like P.T. Barnum said, “Behind every crowd there’s a silver lining.”


Jerry meets on line and in person in the Americas to change the marketing of small companies. He prefers working with “Little Guys” with well under 500 employees. Learn more at:

He has spoken professionally on three continents on his three specialties: Personal Networking, Marketing and Contact Relationship Magic is his speaking site.


Why You Need A Video On Your Home Page

“The client doesn’t want to do a video for the home page of her web site, Chris said.

Home Page videdo“Why not?” asked Rick. “I don’t know what her company does but I can tell you all the kinds of operations that videos have worked for in direct marketing. With that he started listing them:

  • Consultants of all kinds
  • Professionals like CPAs and Lawyers
  • Health care providers—Doctors, Dentists, etc
  • Personal Care folks like beauty parlors, nail salons and the like
  • Any brick and mortar retail establishment
  • Manufacturers, Distributors, etc

“Whoa there Bre’r Direct” said Bubba, our southern fried Branding expert. “Y’all could just as easily said every company stead o’ running yourself round the pasture.”

“I agree that video seems to work,” said Kate. “But the question is why?”

Bubba continued, “All those first ones he mentioned are situations where the person is the brand and there is no way to be more convincing than for y’all to tell your story the same way you would in person looking right at the camera. Manufacturers and Distributors many times are hooked up with the guy or gal who started the business but the words of someone in the business that speaks to the brand can be just a powerful even when theah name isn’t on the door. ”

Kate nodded in agreement and said, “Cognitive Psychologists tell us that way down there in bottom of our brains each of us is still programmed to respond more positively to human faces than any other thing we see. We’re just wired that way.”

“We give videos time,” I said. “We spend up to a couple minutes without clicking to jump to another screen. That builds Trust and as Rob would say builds your brand. Comscore reported that the difference was over 60% in time spent on a site when there was a video.”

Chris said, “The thing my client is confused about is the cost. She believes she has to have ‘movie grade’ video to put up on the web site. I’ve shown her the level of quality you can get with a home camera and editing software that is free but she’s not going for it.”

“She’s being a woman,’’ Gail said.

Kate snorted and all the guys looked perplexed.

Gail continued, “Women worry more about what they look like on camera than men. But they also have an advantage. If you display the faces of male and female models with equal grooming side by side, men will look at the woman first. So will the women. In other words, women know they will be looked at and either like it or dislike it. She doesn’t like it.”

“But if she is concerned with the ROI of her marketing efforts, She might change her tune given some facts. Video provides the second highest return on investment you can get on-line just behind featured articles with direct links to your site,” I said. “On top of that if you want to know what visitors are really interested in on your site, start tracking the videos they watch and then personalizing from there.

It all starts with establishing Trust and telling people what you do. That short positioning video on the home page can make a web site up to twice as powerful at building business.”


Our ”Little Guys” Marketing brain trust will return next week. See you then.


Jerry Fletcher crafts Trust-based marketing strategies from his offices south of Portland, Oregon for companies in the Americas and Asia. Learn more and see a home page video at

Jerry speaks professionally on three continents on Networking, Trust-based Marketing, and Contact Relationship Magic. Click on a home page video at



Why Small Guys Should Think Twice About Social Media

I learned a few things when I spent a day last week at a conference of small business people.

Elephant in the room--social mediaKate asked, “Like what?”

“There’s an elephant in the room,” I said. “The noise about that big beast is the thing that gets in the way of most of those folks having a solid marketing and sales plan. The keep being told about the tremendous reach of the major social programs. The data is reasonably accurate but the fact that Facebook gets to sky zillion people doesn’t translate to people coming into your establishment in east Podunk Junction where the total population within 20 minutes of your store wouldn’t fill a football stadium. Part of the problem is that they believe the big numbers will be a magic charm.”

Chris chimed in, “Then there is the don’t know factor. They don’t know what they don’t know and I don’t know if they will ever find out!”

“Easy there, web master,” said Rob our branding guru, “you’ll get yourself all whupped up like the topping on one of grannie’s lemon cream pies only it ain’t quite so tasty. What I mean is that some folks didn’t grow up with all this stuff and so they just don’t get it. Give’ em a break. Shucks, they make great customers for you.”

“You have a point,” said Chris.

Kate asked “So why do you still have a long face?”

“Because they want all the bells and whistles but they aren’t willing to learn how the digital world works.”

“Boy is that the truth,” said Rick, our Direct Marketing expert. “I get requests that require the most sophisiticated approaches every day from people that don’t have a clue as to the tools we have to use to meet their expectations. They want to do automated digital marketing and are not willing to learn what is reqired and what it costs both in terms of time and money whether they do it themselves or hire a pro.

Gail interjected, “Look, I’m one of those people that just doesn’t quite get it. Not because I haven’t tried. I’ve taken classes and I try to stay up to date with webinars and online resources but they keep changing stuff and I don’t have time to keep up, I have a business to run. You and the other digital types need to remember that all these things are tools. I don’t have to relearn how to use hammer each time I need one and you know as well as I do that most manuals for this stuff are non-existent or written for the cognoscetti not for us non-techies!”

“That is what I heard all day long,” I said. “Over breakfast a former sales person for a Fortune 500 company that had opened her own business said she was much happier but just couldn’t figure out whether to go networking and making cold calls or figure out how to put Twitter and Facebook to work for her.”

“So you told her to get to Networking and Cold calling, I’m sure,” said Kate.

“Yes, I said, “but I suggested that she should start asking customers if they used social media and if so which and for what. Later in the day in my presentation I noted that a recent Gallup poll says that 62% of Americans do not use social media to make buying decisions.”

“However,” Rick said, if she asks the right questions, once she learns about her customers she  will have a better fix on an approach to all the digital marketing she might do.

“Right,” I said. “All day long it came back to the wrong questions. In my view, the right ones are:

  1. What media (traditional or digital) do your prospects or customers actually use? Why?
  2. How do they relate to it and the offers they find in it? Why?
  3. If they had to pick just one way of being contacted which would it be? Why?

What do you think?


Jerry and his merry band will be back next week

This blog is from the experience of Jerry Fletcher. Learn more at his consulting website:

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