Making relevant social media posts are the most important thing to remember when marketing your bar or tavern.
The PITH method is an easy way to make sure your tweets and FB posts are the maximized to the most effective way of communicating with your prospective customers. Before I explain the PITH method, there are two things to remember. You are not posting to your customers only. You are posting to the average 250 people they know, and the average 250 people they know. Therefore the post/update/tweet has a reach of 62,500 people and that’s only if it’s somewhat useful. The number could rise exponentially if the social media post is more effective. The point is, just because you may not think it speaks to your followers, it may be of interest to someone they know. It is so easy to pass the information on these days, that if your social media post is effective, it will get forwarded on to someone who may be in need of your services.
Second, the main reason people join Instagram, Facebook and Twitter is not to be marketed to! Most business owners forget that people go on Facebook to check out their friends and what they are doing. So, if you are constantly bombarding your fans with sales pitches, they will just block you and that is the worst thing that can happen. If you have 300 friends but 250 of them block your posts (which you don’t and cannot know) then all of your efforts are for naught and you are spinning your wheels and not getting results. Use the PITH method to make sure you are providing the most effective posts to your friends and followers. Your posts should include one of the four categories listed below and the best ones will have two or more categories satisfied in the same post. Remember, very rarely any of your posts be a direct sales pitch to buy your products. Unless it’s a wildly great deal, for a very limited time, you should never post blatant sales pitches in your post. They should be subtle references that reminds your followers that “Here is what I do, if you ever need it, this is a reminder to remember me if you do, meanwhile I am going to provide you with posts that are P,I,T or H.”
P – Personal / Private – The fact of the matter is that people are interested in other peoples personal and private lives. That is why Facebook grew so fast and why it is what it is today. Same holds for Instagram. No other reason. Therefore you need to make your social media posts of a private/personal nature, for people to engage with you via Social Media. When you make a personal social media post, they see you as part of their Facebook community and allow you in to their circle. Most marketers fall into the trap of thinking, “Oh, I am using Facebook for business so I need to keep in professional.” That is the easiest way for you to get lumped in to the group of people that only get viewed if they are extremely bored. If you want to stay in their feed and have your posts show up on their page on a regular basis, you cannot come across as a business sales person. Of course, you don’t want to put pictures of you acting inappropriately or being crass and rude but your social media posts can be personal things that your followers will find interesting. There are a million examples but you need to let people into your life a little bit if you want them to follow your posts with interest. I follow Lebron James on Twitter and of the hundreds of posts he made since I started following him, the one I remember most, was the night before the season opener. He said he was getting those “First Day of School” jitters, and even laid out his clothes for the next day. It was a simple, yet still professional, insight into his personal life.
I – Interesting. – If you find something that is interesting, go ahead and pass it on. If you look at Twitter page @UberFacts, they only post interesting facts that you might have never known. They are very interesting. They have thousands of followers without having to follow back (which is the key to knowing if someone is truly providing customer perceived value through their Twitter account) and the people follow just to see the interesting tidbits that they share.
The trick is to post things that are of extreme interest to the masses, but have a slight correlation with your product or service. Do not reference articles that are boring and scream “Hey, here is a reference to my product.” I knew a security contractor who sold alarm systems. Anytime a news source reported on a crime, he re-posted it in his feed, because he thought it would entice his followers to do business with him. However, the articles were not interesting, and people see right through that. Eventually, his friend/followers just end up blocking him (I did) because he only posted articles about break in’s and stolen property. Who wants to see that on their Facebook home page every day?
He would have been more successful if he posted a personal tidbit and only posted articles that had maybe a smaller reference to his products, while being more interesting, such as a “5 million dollar painting goes missing from the local museum, police say it’s an inside job.” This would be more interesting to the general public and doesn’t scream, “Hey you’re not safe in your home, buy an alarm from me!” Yes these articles are fewer and farther between but it beats alienating your audience via, boring, sales intent loaded bait and switch articles.
T – Timely – Another way to make sure your posts are read and your feed isn’t blocked/unfollowed is to provide timely discussions. I like the example where the police re-opened the investigation of Natalie Wood’s accidental death 30 years after it happened. If at that time you were to make social media posts about Natalie Wood, Robert Wagner or Christopher Walken say a year or two before that, your posts would’ve gone unnoticed. However, the exact same post the day after the announcement would get 100 times the response that it would’ve gotten only a week earlier.
If you are going to make a social media post and it doesn’t meet one of the other three PITH criteria, make sure it related to a timely subject and watch your response rates sky rocket.
H – Helpful – Make your posts helpful to the everyday person in their everyday lives. You should be in the business of helping other people if you hope to be successful in business. Zig Ziglar says, “You can get anything you want in life if you just help enough other people get what they want.” If you want to get followed and have your posts read with interest and passed along to others, go out of your way to find things to post in your feed that will help others make their lives easier and less stressful. If you come across an article, webpage or product that is truly helpful to others, by all means, share that with your followers whether it helps you or not.
If your fans/followers see you has someone who consistently provides help, value and assistance, they will associate that type of behavior with your business endeavors as well. They will think, “all of these photographers are the same, except, John Smith. He really goes out of his way to help people,” Now, when they need a photographer, or when they know someone who needs a photographer, they will be your best salesperson because you have provided them with consistent value over time.
So, remember blatant sales pitches should never be used on any social networking sites. You should have a nice rotation of PITH posts, updates, tweets. Also only 33% or less should even have a vague reference to your business via articles or products. If you are a photographer, sure post tips on how to be more photogenic, or how to take a great picture every time, but they should be 33% or less of your overall posts. The others should be of a personal nature or helpful in general. If you would like more help with social media posts and social media management, see my new article titled, 4 Social Media No-No’s: How Most Marketers Are Annoying Their Followers.