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In my last post I said I was behind the times (as well as behind time) for not riding the gargantuan wave of social media marketing to promote my book. Mea culpa for lacking a virtual fan horde. But guess what? I’ve spent another few weeks at the social media marketing circus (if I may mix metaphors). And after yet more exposure to the many rings where I might share my wares with an audience of virtual strangers-cum-friends, I’m having second thoughts.

My first, and maybe last, second thought is that the wave may have crested—and the moment passed—for using every last social media trick to hook folks into buying whatever it is. In the nano-second evolutionary world of social media, hard hawking via Facebook, Twitter, webinars and slews of virtual partners offering free bonuses may no longer be the way to go. If it ever was.

If the aggressive multi-media approach is already feeling old to me as a recent customer—and it really, really is—my best, by now pretty experienced guess is it’s likely to feel old— “been there, done that, leave me alone already”—to the most sophisticated of my soon-to-be-readers. To the fresh and virtually untouched, it could be confounding. Like, excuse me, why are you sending me another email about a book I decided to buy after the first email. Leave me alone.

This isn’t to say the idea of building an on-line tribe isn’t a good one, in theory. If we’re talking a real tribe, of people I’ve actually connected with, one at a time or in small groups in real life (or, okay, on-line), I’ve got that and I want to stay in touch. But mere months before the book is out, to start working like mad to attract a raft of pretend friends for the purpose of creating a tribe to sell to feels inauthentic, and well, as I’ve heard the social media marketing people say…“salesy”.

I have a long-ago but significant background in advertising and public relations. And as the people I convinced to become coaching clients will tell you, I’m not shy about selling my goods. It occurs to me that those hundreds, and the thousands I taught yoga to, already know what I have to offer. I built my unofficial tribe organically over the decades while I’ve helped them and myself to become more fully who we are. Sure, I want to let these people know about the book. But does it have to take many almost certainly annoying rounds of virtual nudging to do it? No.

Mine is admittedly an old fashioned word-of-mouth way, with a new twist. We’ll have at the ready a webpage, ye old email and our modest Facebook presence, along with whatever other social media tools we may be moved to engage along the way. I don’t yet know what we’ll want to try, any more than I used to know what I was going to write in the journal that’s become Bare Naked at the Reality Dance. Neither, of course, do I know what the next wave in the larger world of social media might look like. Many pundits think Facebook has peaked, and I tend to agree.

What I do know is that much of the virtual marketing being done right now feels like overkill, and overkill is not for me. My small trusty team will help us find our own more quiet, intuitive way to proceed. I will keep you posted as we keep our collective ear to the ground to see whether the old hard-hitting wave may indeed have crested and whether there may be a new and gentler one forming in the virtual sea—not just for me to ride, but for the many of us who want to get our word out, not with a stick or bullhorn, but with a potent feminine whisper and a come-hither-because-it’s-lovely-here glance. I very much welcome your thoughts about mine!

About the Author: Suzanne Grenager

A seasoned writer and mentor with a gift for helping people see and be their most authentic, empowered Self.

6 Comments

  1. Beth Barany July 2, 2011 at 3:13 pm - Reply

    Suzanne, You know I’m a big proponent of using the right tools to reach your target audience. So who are they and where are they, right?! Sometimes we need to experiment to find them! I love your blog and think you’re doing a great job approaching your readership in just the right way. Here’s to a potent feminine whisper and a come-hither-because-it’s-lovely-here glance!

    Congratulations!

    • Suzanne Grenager July 2, 2011 at 3:18 pm - Reply

      Wow. Your kind words means a lot to me, dear Beth. We haven’t employed any SEO yet nor have I officially notifed anyone that it’s here, so there is work to be done (as you would well know). But now that the book is almost fully designed and is soon off to the proofreader, I can turn my attention to finding, attracting and engaging readers. Thank you so much for your heartfelt support!

  2. Tia Sparkles Singh July 7, 2011 at 11:14 pm - Reply

    Very thoughtful post Suzanne! While I don’t think social media is on the way out, I do see a lot of “corrections in the market’ so to say. The early adopters got in, messed about and learned from mistakes so the the people coming in now see a very different version of what was.

    The one thing everyone’s come to realise? That it’s ALL about relationships. Sitting behind a computer screen doesn’t mean we’re talking to machines, there are still people on the other side and many people had forgotten that.

    Ultimately, media is media – it’s the human element that makes it social. The buzz words of authenticity and honesty are overkill as well now. I’m prediction INTUITION is the next big wave. Ha!

    • Suzanne Grenager July 8, 2011 at 2:08 pm - Reply

      Great to see you here, dear Tia. I appreciate* your* thoughtful comments and agree social media are here to stay. What I meant to express by “big tent folding” is that the over-the-top circus barker approach to social media MARKETING may be on the way out. Thanks for helping me see I may have been over the top myself with my metaphors!

      Also, you make a good point about the need to remember that the underlying purpose – and what is driving people to social media – is to make real connections with real people. And what better human quality for that than intuition? We need to feel where people are and trust our instincts as we connect with them. INTUITION it is!

  3. Emily July 18, 2011 at 8:53 am - Reply

    You are absolutely right that different targets needs different ways to connect. Yet I do not believe that social media is passed its prime just yet. Specifically because it is social, and it’s about connecting. It can be in your face or it can be gentle. It is what you make it! Facebook is the best way for you to connect with your friends and for you to connect with THEIR friends. No need for repetition. People do business with people they like. Or love…

  4. Suzanne Grenager July 18, 2011 at 12:10 pm - Reply

    Thanks, dear Emily, for your encouraging words about social media. I am glad you feel that repetition isn’t necessary. It’s the overkill aspect of the s.m. marketing that has turned me off. I appreciate your reminder that if I connect with people in a way that fosters love and respect, they will want to check out my book. But I am still frankly deep in the throes of figuring out how to connect authentically without overdoing the marketing part.

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