Merriam-Webster’s definition of passion: “… a strong feeling of enthusiasm or excitement for something or about doing something.”
This pretty much sums up my feelings for Facebook when I received my invitation to join in 2009. Passion for what you do gets you out of bed in the morning, not the revenue you earn with the product or service. Passion is what turns strangers into friends and then, possibly, customers. A sale or promotion makes money until another business such runs a big sale or promotion. It’s about building a connection that goes beyond the dollars and cents.
Social media gives businesses the ability to build relationships with their followers. These relationships are built with passion. It is the “warm-fuzzy” feeling you get about a business or product. Time and time again business owners tell me about the person they met that said they came into their business because they found them on Facebook. They call the business owner or employee by name and act as if they’ve just found a long lost friend. They love the business Facebook page and look forward to seeing what is posted next. A marketing company sub-contracted me to manage a Facebook page for a local business and said the owner (a gentleman in his 70’s) was very skeptical but would give it three months. It has been about six months and the owner stopped me in public the other day, introduced himself and said that he was very impressed. The Facebook page is building relationships and that is what his business is all about.
The gratitude and appreciation shared by satisfied customer on a Facebook page can not be conveyed with the same enthusiasm in traditional marketing. Social media is the only way the general public can communicate with a business in real time. I claim to be a very passionate social media marketer, some friends might say it is more of an obsession, however I prefer passion. To me it is not about the number of likes, follows, people in my Google+ circles or connections on LinkedIn … it is about people talking with people and building relationships.
Each social media account has it’s own personality, and the task of a social media marketer is to discover it’s personality and let it flow. My own page is all about coffee, passion and social family, mixed with information about social media marketing. Encourage likes, shares and comments, but most of all make it about them. If your fans, followers and contacts think you are more concerned about getting in their wallet than you are about connecting with them, it will show. If every morning you woke up and posted “I am the greatest friend in the world and you should be my friend because I am smart” and the next day you posted “I make the best chocolate chip cookies in the world so you should be my friend”, you would soon see a decline in your Facebook like count. You need to be provide your followers with value…educate them, inform them, entertain them and genuinely care about them.
How do you share your passion when creating and maintaining connections with your followers?