December 8, 2014 Tahj Mayes

10 Lessons for Online Marketing from our Friends on FRIENDS

“So no one told you life was going to be this way (clap clap clap clap)
Your job’s a joke, you’re broke, your love life’s DOA…”

America’s favorite FRIENDS, Joey, Chandler, Ross, Monica, Rachel, and Phoebe, have some valuable lessons for us when it comes to the world of content marketing or business blogging. So if you feel like your company’s online presence is always stuck in second gear, then read on. We’ll be there for you.

1. Set goals and reach them. Bouncing one mile on a hippity hop can bring a great sense of accomplishment.

Your marketing strategies take on new life when you have a plan. Setting measurable goals brings focus to your work, so make sure each element of your online marketing (blogging, social media, etc.) has a strategic purpose.

 

2. Know your audience. For example, you need to talk to Joey (not Monica) if you’re trapped in an ATM vestibule with Jill Goodacre.

Don’t speak above or below your target audience. They’ll either bounce right off your site (bad) or just feel insulted (worse). Know your target market, and converse with them in ways that allow them to make an easy connection with you.

 

3. “How YOU Doin’?”

Skip the formalities on a blog… you’re not writing a term paper. Write casually, and don’t be afraid to go for a laugh. Use the coolness factor to open doors. Your business will stand out if it doesn’t sound like everyone else, so present your own unique spin on your products and services.

 

4. Share your story… Even old prom videos are gold mines.

Giving your audience a look into your past or how your business got started is a great way to let them get to know you. Even a humble beginning helps your clients relate to you, and, as was the case with Ross and Rachel, it sometimes comes with huge payoffs.

 

5. Always tell the truth. If your product is only 97% effective, be sure you put that on the box (or in your blog).

The online population has been advertised to their entire lives – and they can see through “marketing talk” in a heartbeat. So don’t be afraid to be completely truthful in your writing. Your audience will appreciate your authenticity and grow to trust you.

6. Be reliable, even if you’re on a break.

Having a set writing schedule is a good way to build readership. But even if you take a vacation from writing, be intentional about checking your social media for comments. Answer readers’ questions and do your part to keep that relationship going. After all, being “on a break” doesn’t mean you “broke up.” (Or does it?)

7. There are things you do, and things you don’t do. For example, Joey doesn’t share food.

As stated above, it’s critical that businesses nurture prospects to turn them into leads. But it IS possible to go overboard and turn them off. Be deliberate and focused when it comes to communicating with your readers. And if you want fries, order your own.

8. Do your best to be a good host, even in awkward situations. Don’t feel weird… it’s FINE. You’re FINE. (The only thing weird would be if someone didn’t like Mexican food.)

Sometime you may receive comments or reviews that are less than friendly. As a business owner with a reputation to protect, it is important that you respond quickly and respectfully. Be prepared to listen without getting defensive, and take action to remedy the problem. Handle each one with poise (and hotpads).

9. Repurpose old content with a fresh take. For example, instead of “tacos,” why not “ground beef smileys”?

When writing a blog, it’s important to find creative ways to present the same information. Add a little flair to your old blog articles by re-writing them from a fresh perspective. Or, mix it up from time to time! Custard? Good. Jam? Good. Meat? Good. When several articles each have good elements, combine them. The result will be something truly unique.

 

10. Never lose your competitive edge – just like Monica in a football game.

Some tactics work, and some don’t. But REFUSE to hang up your hat – keep learning, keep trying new things. Don’t let go of the ball, especially when the Geller Cup is at stake. Just don’t break anyone’s nose in the process.

And, in closing, remember that a cup of coffee and a great haircut can solve (almost) all your problems.

…Could we BE having any more fun?

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