I’ve been in Derby for the weekend returned back on Monday. Nice weekend away.
If you have never been to that part of the world, you should I think you’ll enjoy it.
The main Cathedral in town is very lovely. But I think you’ll be overwhelmed by the fact that they are more estate agents than coffee shops. That means if you’re looking for a Costa or Starbucks, you’ll be lucky. You can of course buy plenty of houses.
The original reason for the visit was for me to attend a short seminar and to share some love for Lorraine’s birthday. What was really interesting was the fact that on Saturday night in the centre of town at a very nice Italian restaurant. Nearly all of the couples were using their phones rather than focusing on each others company.
This I found to be very interesting.
But it’s not only the adults that do this I gave up counting the number of times I saw a crying child being given a mobile phone or an iPad to play with as soon as it become distracted. Of course us parents need a little me time, But really, giving a young baby a mobile to play with, teach them young eh?
Now I don’t want to pontificate or to preach to parents about how to bring their children up, that’s something I just wouldn’t do. But really giving them a smartphone to play with, is that something we should be doing just to shut them up. I don’t think so.
Which brings me quite nicely to the beginning of this podcast.
“Strategy is all very well, but it pays to give thought from time to time to the results.” – Winston Churchill
No matter which way you want to look at this the whole smartphone thing, it has taken off really since 2009/10 it’s something that was futuristic in 2005-6 and of course in 2000 we had no idea what was coming.
Since then we have seen many online and smartphone platforms come and go, with many more to come in the future.
And you and I have absolutely no idea what platforms, what social Media forum or software we are going to be using in the future, quite simply we have no idea what is going to be available in the next 12 months let over the next 12 years.
I’ve always said that social media platforms are The Emperor’s New Clothes.
Yet everybody reaches for them couples can sit in restaurants and not talk anymore, yes of course there is a snippet of conversation but for big chunks of their time together they are checking their social feeds or checking their emails.
It’s very easy for us that are 40 or 50 or even 60 somethings to watch these people and say what the hell are they doing why are they not enjoying each other’s company what’s so important?
Many of us of a certain age don’t understand the fact that millennials and above are always working, long gone are the days of 9-5 and finish, go to practice your hobby.
Now it’s all 24/7 in your face, fully loaded non stop. This is the new working world. Anyone that disagrees with that really has their head in the sand.
Perhaps this is why we have seen the political upsets in recent years consumers are soaking up the next piece of propaganda to appear on Twitter or on Facebook or indeed any other platform that they are using and then accepting at face value.
Accepting the propaganda as the truth. It does seem there is a lack of ability to think and understand exactly what is going on now, and I don’t want to moralize on this issue or to tell you it’s wrong or it’s right as a business owner.
I just want to tell you that’s how it is and ignore it at your peril.
If you want to get your message out to your customer base then you have to use the systems, the voice and and processes that they want to use. Just because you don’t like social media, just because you think it’s stupid or boring doesn’t mean your potential customers do.
Some of you may also know me as the anti social media expert for many years I sat back and said I don’t see how you can sell a product or a service in 140 characters, but it’s not about the social media platforms, it’s about engagement, it’s about understanding your Market Place it is about making sure that you grow a fan base of loyal loving followers that want to hear from you rather than you just pushing out a product or endless memes.
This will not allow you to sell your product or to grow business.
There is an entire generation that’s got a piece of electronica stuck to its hand that is waiting for its next update, waiting for his next piece of entertainment. These are the people that skim through the adverts on Sky or whatever digital TV they’re watching. These are the people that watch Netflix or any form of pay per view TV, and yes they do watch Towie (little secret, so do I).
These are also the people that have stopped buying newspapers stopped looking at local advertising whatever they want is that the end of their fingertips most search Google search or a scroll through Facebook or Twitter to find the help they need.
From your point of view as a business owner this is important, just watch the 20 to 30s the 30s to 50s how they manage their lives. Observed them in the next time you’re out shopping ,the next time you’re sitting in a coffee bar or the next time you’re in Macdonalds. Just watch the way they behave and then think about how your business is approaching that how you are going to get your message in front of these people.
The large retailers and the large manufacturers are spending billions of pounds a year on advertising that isn’t working, as evidenced by the fact that many people now scroll through the adverts or use their smartphones whilst the adverts are on, anything but watching ads.
So how does all of this impacts on you? it’s really really quite easy, you need to be looking at how, exactly how to get your message out in front of your target audience in a way that you can make money.
This is not complicated this is not a rocket engineering this is not anything to be worried or something you need learn. There plenty of people have done this before you but you must act, you must change you and carefully consider very carefully what it is you do and how you get your message out to your target market place.
The old stuff is ceasing to work the returns are becoming less and less there is no way we’re going back to where we were 5 or 10 or 15 or even 20 years ago.
Looking forward to the next year, the next 18 months to five years is going to bring massive change, new platforms new ways of marketing new ways of doing stuff stuff that we just don’t know how to deal with at the moment.
Bottom line is if you are providing services or products you need to be thinking very carefully about what it is you do and how it is you move your business forward.
You know that running your own business, being self-employed it’s now a very competitive Immigration continues as the population continues to grow there are going to be more people that are qualified to do what you do, there are going to be more businesses arriving to take your market share to take food off of your table now it’s always been dog eat dog.
But now we know full well that everything is more competitive, everything is accelerating the ability to get your message out there on a one-to-many rather than a one to one basis is changing how we think and how we work.
It’s going to get to a point very shortly in the future where the old stuff just stops working the Returns gets so low that it’s not worth doing anymore.
So let me ask you what you are going to do about it?
Of course you can join me over the Ninja’s where I can help with some of this shizzle. www.therichardsmith.com/ninja
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Until next time. Stay clean and frosty, keep oiling the wheels
Music in the podcast