The 2nd in a short series of blogs by local small traders, on their experiences of social media use.
Mary Rose Selman of Mary Kay Cosmetics (where you don’t have to be called Mary, but it helps).
When I started my business with Mary Kay Cosmetics it was pretty modern to have a cordless phone! Times have certainly changed and I knew that I had to embrace social media or lose the potential for new customers and connecting with my consultants via the different platforms. I was enthusiastic and clueless. I had no idea what was entailed and certainly no idea of how my business (which is entirely dependent on face to face appointments) was going to include it.
Step in Jane Binnion. In one session, shared over a cup of coffee, I was enlightened! Not only did she explain succinctly each of the major players (Face Book, Twitter and LinkedIn), but she also transferred her enthusiasm and expertise.
It took time to find my feet in this brave new world. It took time to find out exactly what worked for me and what didn’t. I still find I don’t have the picture to go with the words on Facebook, my LinkedIn profile is not quite 100%, but Twitter is a revelation: fast and fun, my natural home!
Having a presence on each of these three is definitely benefiting my business. It has increased brand awareness, which brings new customers; connectivity with consultants and Directors across the globe, which fits so well with the Mary Kay ethos of community and lastly elevating the profile of Mary Kay consultants as sole traders running profitable businesses from home.
Jane has now worked with my Directors and consultants via Conference Calls. And as for me, well to my amusement Mary Kay Cosmetics UK has asked me to be one of their On Line Champions! I haven’t quite gone native yet, but I am glad I have taken the first leap into the future!
You will find Mary Rose on twitter as MaryRoseMK
Alan and Debra Schofield ……….. Gardener’s Cottage at Growing with Nature.
In Spring 2010 my wife and I were diversifying our vegetable growing business to include holiday letting of our very special eco house. We had done all the relevant research into companies who would promote our offering, but decided we wished to embrace the marketing ourselves. We knew of facebook and the opportunities presented by social media, but like most businesses felt we had neither the skills nor the time to learn them.
Step forward Jane’s Social Media (Jane was already a customer for our vegetables) and within 3 months we not only had a facebook page and presence that was starting to get noticed but more importantly the skills and confidence to continue to run it ourselves.
And then earlier this year we were nominated in the business innovation section, unbeknown to us, and we ended up as a finalist and highly commended because of our website and Facebook page!
18 months down the road our own marketing has paid off. The cottage has really taken off this year and we are having to turn potential customers away as the cottage gains in popularity. So a big thank you to Jane’s Social Media !
You will find Alan and Debra on facebook as Gardeners Cottage at Growing with Nature