Tips & Best Practices for Family Entertainment Centers

Resolve To Make More Money This Year

If you are looking for a New Year’s resolution this week that’s sure to make your business more money, then take the following quote to heart. Resolve to “pull” more information from your customers rather than to “push” your specials on them.

“Social media done right is continuous brand engagement which is a careful mixture of content, quality, and volume. Spewing out spam (Shamelessly promoting yours or others products without offering significant value) whether on Twitter, LinkedIn or on a blog is not likely to be very effective for you.”

I found this post on LinkedIn.  A guy named Tom Anderson, who is actually a LinkedIn connection of a connection of mine, wrote it.  He responded to a post put out by someone who I do know.  While I’m not sure who Tom Anderson is, I liked what he had to say – in particular I liked how he said it.

We, TrainerTainment, were lucky enough in 2011 to recruit Brooke Ballard a real leader, and cutting edge researcher and thinker of Social Media.  During the last 10 months Brooke has talked a lot about engagement and relationship building with your Facebook, Twitter, and other social media platforms.

The thing that keeps coming back to us from our customer is “Show Me the Money!”  I think that’s a great command by you our reader. And so, I’ll pass that back to you. Can you give us specific examples marketing efforts that have given you a specific return on your money?

To me, marketing is more art than science. You have to do a lot of it. The great thing with social media is that you can market every day at a price that is affordable.  Did you resolve this year to dedicate 3%-7% of your revenue to marketing?  I did.  In today’s economy, the only businesses that will win will be those that invest in consistent sales and marketing.  They won’t visit your center or use your product unless you are top of mind.  There are too many distractions, competitors, and this economy is too shaky for you to depend on customer memory.

Finally, and I’ll stop preaching and pass this week’s message on to Brooke and let her tell one of our success stories with Social Media (She actually helped book holiday events through Twitter communication).

You’ve got to add a dedicated focus on sales, and excellent execution to your marketing resolutions.  I’ll talk more about those topics in the coming weeks.

Happy New Year!

~ Beth

We’ve been working with Shenaniganz for over six months now. By having daily conversations on Facebook and Twitter, we’ve really been able to get in touch with our community. We know that “likes” and followers aren’t enough to fuel social media in a monetary sense, so we work hard to look for ways to start conversing with or fans and followers.

When someone checks in – we say welcome and hello. If someone mentions they had a great time at our facility, we tell them thank you and remind them of our upcoming specials. It’s never contrived and ALWAYS sincere.

After working diligently on Twitter for several months, we started to see more and more people mention Shenaniganz. Each time, we’d thank them and try and spark a little conversation; “Glad you had a great time bowling! Did you know we have a contest to win 365 days of free bowling?! Check it out: (insert link here).”

One day, a mommy blogger mentioned Shenaniganz, and as always, we used it as a catalyst to start a conversation. The conversation, which took place over several days, produced two Holiday party leads (her husband’s company and her sister-in-law’s company), a mommy blogger group following us on Facebook and Twitter (of course they all ran to our Facebook page to like us and enter that free bowling contest for their kids!), and countless sign ups for our newsletter (the lure of our “12 Days of Giveaways” for the Holidays was just too exciting for these moms to pass up). This mommy group often shares or retweets our information out to numerous Dallas moms – an act that is priceless in the FEC world.

Of course, true (and good) conversation is an art, and had we thrust our deals in this mommy’s face we probably wouldn’t have gotten the same results. But we cultured the relationship, we showed that we cared, and we offered to help – which is what social media is truly meant to do.

If you want to make money using social media like Shenaniganz, stop focusing on the “media” in social media and start focusing on the SOCIAL. Yes, Facebook, Twitter, and other social sites are great advertising platforms. But as with any great thing, the more you work it, the more it will work for you – and ROI, or ROC (return on conversation) as we like to call it, takes dedicated, consistent, and thoughtful hard work!

~ Brooke

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