I just received the latest issue of a trade magazine where many of the articles deal with various trade shows and events that go on from time to time. My how things have changed over just the last year! Each and every show had seminars held by nursery consultants who have jumped on the social media bandwagon. Just a few years ago we we're told that nurseries really should not worry about or bother with social media, we are now told that your a dinosaur if you don't. Remember that social media highlights your businesses social skills, or lack of. No amount of social media will cover the fact that when I walk in your store you still can't remember my name. Doug Green has an interesting post titled, "Social Media for Garden Centers".Â Doug say's the most powerful social media we have is, "'face-to-face' and it works pretty simply (no power cords, no software, no computers) by looking somebody in the eye, calling them by name and giving them the answer they need." He continues, "Want to improve your social media? Take a memory course and learn more of your customer names (heck, never mind 'learn them' â€“ you want to remember them, you want to be able to recall details of your top customers). You spend a ton of bucks on other software â€“ go get an upgrade for yourself."
Social mediaÂ is a great way to introduce people to your particular business, but if you lack interpersonal skills it's all for naught. While at Borders Books in Folsom I found myself engrossed in a book, bothering no one. One of their "overly friendly" greeters walked up and interrupted my reading by asking, "if I was finding everything o.k.?" I wasn't walking around looking confused, I had found something just fine all by myself. A lack of face-to-face social skills trumps anything done online. All the money spent by Borders on their social media outreach undone by a well meaning, yet socially awkward moment. I wonder with the advent of all the social media some people are loosing their face-to-face skills?