Do you care even...? You might not, but plenty of people do says Jennifer Grove, owner of Sky Blue Events and social media marketing maven.
Sky Blue Events relies 100% on Twitter and Blog Conversations to Generate Business. That's right, their advertising budget is $0. And they can barely keep up with the traffic.
Says Grove: "I spend at least 2 hours a day blogging and tweeting. And that's not enough. That enables me to look after the business that comes into me, but doesn't give me the time to go out and generate new business. I also have a marketing assistant who works on maintaining our relationships. Between us, we probably spend around 20 hours a week on social media."
Sky Blue Events has capitalized on the potential of social media in ways that traditional wedding and party planners have not. Their clients range from non-profits and boutiques to weddings and pan-national launches. When Grove hires a new employee, twitter following and facebook friend lists are a prime consideration. Applicants with small numbers need not apply. The customer base grows via virtual word of mouth recommendation--or word of keypad, as it seems to be nowadays. This seems impersonal, but it's not. Grove relies on a tried and trusted network of friends in ever widening circles.
A recent success story: Grove tweeted about Sugarcoma, a tasting tour of bakeries in Washington DC. Within twelve hours the tickets were gone, and there were clamors for more. A similar event is being planned in Baltimore--followers are requesting tickets even before a date and location(s) have been announced.
Grove's business model draws from the best elements of her professional experience and with 7 years of e-Commerce under her very fashionable belt, she is way ahead of the pack.
Her biggest challenge is maintaining the relationships. In the immediacy of today's communication, clients expect a prompt response. Sky Blue Events is fanatical about this. The two hours each morning we mentioned above? Item one on the daily agenda. Responses come within twenty-four hours or less--and even that can be a struggle for the team.
Jennifer shared her Top Twitter Tips:
- Strike a balance between personal presence and professional presence.
- Stay active; people will drop off if you're not entertaining and engaging.
- Seed keywords in tweets, that's how people find you: " wedding planning" or "engagement ring".
- Put a URL in tweets so people circle back to you.
- Link a blog to your tweets; ask people to retweet.
- Solicit opinions; people love to share theirs.
- Jump in with both feet.