Hashtags and Ham Sandwich Marketing

ham sandwich marketingAs I was reading every possible book and resource on blogging, I came across the great title: No One Cares What You Had For Your Lunch: 100 Ideas for your blog. It turned out to be one of the most important marketing lessons, about blogging, micro-blogging (Twitter), social networking (Facebook), and business networking (LinkedIn).

Now, we add the posting of nonsense hashtags to Twitter and Facebook to a long list of pointless activities. And not just nonsense hashtags, but many, on a single post. Don’t think it looks hip or smart, momentarily, but there is no upside impact, particularly on Facebook. In fact, the reverse is true.

Each HASHTAG should have a purpose…

The essence: In all forms of advertising, marketing, social media, and networking you are vying for people’s attention within brief and/or limited time constraints. It is important for your words and images be pithy, crisp, motivational, interesting, and memorable.

To rambling about topics which don’t pass the ‘Who cares?’ test is not just a waste of a reader’s time, it increases the likelihood they will tune you out in the future.

Facebook offers many options for people to lessen your presence, including demoting you to acquaintance status or turning off the appearance of your updates in their news feed. So, with those choices (and others), to unfriend or block someone and likely offend them; you can simply silence them.

Just what is Ham Sandwich Marketing? It is my buzzword phrase, inspired by the aforementioned book. It is my notation of meaningless posts and status updates that are useless and annoying to everybody but the person who initiated them.

Example: “Just had lunch at Wolfgang Puck with Susie, Johnny, and Big Al.”

My response (Either mentally or actually, by Direct Tweet, Direct Message or Public Facebook Wall Post): “Did you have a ham sandwich?”

ham sandwichIt’s my not-so-subtle sarcastic way of nudging the poster or blogger with the subtext: “I read your item. Am I supposed to know who Susie, Johnny and Al are? Am I supposed be impressed you lunched at Wolfgang Puck. Why don’t just tell me you had a ham sandwich. That would be equally unimpressive and unnecessary?”

If you’re lunch was outstanding, take a picture of the ham sandwich. post about the freshly made Dijon mustard, the soft fresh-baked roll, and what variety of ham was involved. Then there is possibility of being entertaining. Otherwise, you’re just engaging in Ham Sandwich Marketing.

In today’s fast and furious world of communications, being boring is a big crime. Being irrelevant is a felony offense.

Don’t waste people’s time. Be interesting or be gone!

Andy Ebon - wedding marketing expert

Andy Ebon
The Wedding Marketing Authority
The Wedding Marketing Blog

WeddingWire World DC: Next Stop

WeddingWire World Speakers
WeddingWire World Speakers

WeddingWire World DC used to be a 1-day, 1-location educational conference in 2012 and 2013. In 2014, WeddingWire World has expanded to five cities. On Monday, June 16th, WeddingWire World returns to DC, near its corporate headquarters.

It’s about the approach

WeddingWire World has its own flavor, style, approach and takeaways.  It is efficient, paced quickly, and peppered with three types of presenters:

  • In-House WeddingWire Experts
  • National Wedding Industry Education Experts
  • Regional Industry Experts

The sessions are 30, 45, and 60 minutes, with short-short 5 minute breaks. The last two sessions of the day are breakouts. The rest are general sessions.

Speakers make themselves for questions during breakfast, lunch, and the day-end cocktail party.

There are WeddingWire Customer Satisfaction Experts available throughout the day to assist current and prospective advertisers with answers to their questions. Invariably, most questions centered around maximizing a business listing or better understanding and utilizing back-end tools to communicate more effectively with clients and manage one’s business.

Prepare Yourself

WeddingWireIt’s a full day, 8am – 6pm, so get some rest and clear your brain.

If you take away just a couple of gems from each session, you’ll be supercharged.

You can look for the heavy sell, but you won’t find it on the WeddingWire stage. All presenters are there to information, explain, and education…. PERIOD!

… refreshing!

You don’t have to live in Greater Washington DC to attend. Anywhere in a few hours driving radius the Gaylord National Resort and Convention Center should consider a Sunday drive and a productive Monday. Oh, there are no rules against flying in from further away.

Hope to see you there…

Andy Ebon - wedding marketing expert

 

 

Andy Ebon
Wedding Marketing Authority
The Wedding Marketing Blog

Social Media Tactics: Blogging is THE Most Important

A few months ago, after a seminar, one of the attendees approached me and asked, point-blank:

“OK, Andy, what are the top three social media choices a local wedding business should make, in what order, and why?”

Social Media Tactics

As a small crowd gathered, I didn’t miss a beat.

  • Build and maintain a blog
  • Launch a YouTube Channel
  • Have an active business Facebook presence

Numbers 4, 5 & 6, just to stimulate discussion, were:

  • Google Plus (still too early to tell at that point)
  • LinkedIn
  • Twitter

I believe that Blogging is the single most important effort a small business owner can make. It enables you to publish a self-maintained highlight reel of  your business, write about your peers and clients, become a source for the media, attract prospects and entertain customers.

These days, blogging software, such as WordPress, has become a full-fledged CMS (Content Management System) that can merge your blog AND website. Even a blog that has just two new posts a week makes a major impact on SEO (Search Engine Optimization).

Four years ago, if a prospect did a search for a business, like yours, it is was important to found in the first three pages of Google (or other) Search Results… the Top 30. Why? Because 90% of people clicked on a result within the Top 30.

Today, 90% of clicks occur on the first page of search results, in the Top 7. Impatience, indeed.

I’m proud that if you searched with the keywords wedding marketing, today, my business would rank #1 & #2 out of 390 million results on Google. #3 is Wedlock Magazine, a publication I write for, every issue. Of course, the 390 million results are unimportant. What’s important is that The Wedding Marketing Blog shows up in the first few results. After the Top 10, it doesn’t matter.

When people look to find interesting content about products or services you offer, in the geographic area you service, they should find you! They should find interesting stories, perspectives, and a business personality differentiating you from the competition. At those kind of results are best found by blogging.

The plan goes like this…

  • Read other business blogs
  • See what you like and don’t like
  • Start a blog
  • Write, write, write… your writing will improve
  • After about 20 posts, publicize your blog
  • Keep writing 2-3 times a week
  • The results will rocket you past the competition
Now get busy!

Andy Ebon
The Wedding Marketing Authority
The Wedding Marketing Blog

Facebook, YouTube, Blogging

Wedding businesses all tend to favor the marketing tools we are more familiar with. Sometimes that causes us rationalize or justify the tools are the most effective.

Such circular logic often confirms the wrong choices (in the present tense).

In this 1-minute interview clip, Andy Ebon takes a somewhat contrarian view of wedding marketing trends.

Noreen Azuzu
Contributing Writer
The Wedding Marketing Blog