#1 Rule for Social Media Marketing Success…

social media marketingLet me tell you the secret that has led me to my goal: my strength lies solely in my tenacity” ~ Louis Pasteur

#1 Rule for Social Media Marketing Success has got to be TENACITY.   Without a doubt, tenacity ( the ability to persevere or stick with a task) is probably the most important ingredient in social media marketing success.

See, social media marketing is not a “set it and forget it” proposition.

For those of you who are actively PARTICIPATING in social media, you’re responding with a great big Homer Simpson style, “Doh!”

Anyone with an established healthy blog knows that social media “magic” doesn’t happen in 6 days – 6 weeks or even 6 months.  They will also attest that it takes a serious investment of time and effort to participate in social media – but most will also tell you that the investment is well worth it.

In the post, When Fantasy Meets Reality – Social Media Marketing Reality Check, I share what I think are the 4 “essential” ingredients for social media marketing success:

  • understand your customers GDP (Goals, Desires, Problems)
  • be able to express how your business  helps customers to achieve goals, satisfy desires and solve problems
  • be naturally social
  • be technically savvy

Yet – even if you are able to bring together all of those elements – you must apply a HEALTHY dose of tenacity to the mix.  Bringing these 4 essential elements together and expecting overnight success is  – well, it’s like mixing the ingredients to bake a cake but failing to place the mixture into a preheated oven.

Denise Zimmerman in the article 4 signs you’re a social media failure illustrates the importance of tenacity in social media marketing as she chronicles two weight loss industry heavy weights (pun intended) epic failures in the world of social media marketing.  Both Jenny Craig and Weight Watchers are committing “marketing sins” commonly plaguing much smaller companies and are acting as if social media marketing is a “set it and forget it” proposition.

Denise writes:

Weight Watchers’ Twitter page contains all of three tweets, all posted Feb. 22. It has been silent ever since, although it has 1,167 followers. Rather than interact with these existing followers and build its following, it directs folks to its Facebook page.

Contrast this “set it and forget it” social media marketing strategy strategy with how Dell Computers is using Twitter.  Dell is often held up as shining example of social media marketing success. Dell is serious about using social media marketing to promote and build their business.  This is from Dell’s dedicated Twitter page –

Perhaps you already use Twitter to communicate with your friends, find out about breaking news, and keep up with technology and social media (or even political) leaders.

Now you can also get great deals from Dell, stay current with what’s happening at Dell, and connect with other Dell fans and employees through Twitter!

If you go to the Dell Twitter page, you’ll find over 30 different Twitter feeds as options.  If you live in Ireland and are interested in the latest news about refurbished Dell computers  – there’s a Dell Twitter feed for you.

Perhaps you’re digital nomad – “For individuals that travel their world, their country, their city, their neighborhood, their office, their campus with their laptop and other electronic device,” there’s a Dell Twitter feed just for you.

Maybe you’re an online video aficionado – there’s a Dell Twitter feed dedicated to letting you know when Dell uploads new videos so you can learn more and most importantly, share those cutting edge videos with your family, friends and colleagues.

Go ahead – click on a feed – any Dell Twitter feed.   I’ll bet you won’t find a single one with only 3 tweets from last February.

Do you know what happens when you expect your social media marketing to operate on autopilot?


I once worked with a client who, when he learned all the effort he would have to put into a social media marketing campaign decided that he would rather use television advertising to communicate with prospective customers.

I don’t fault him in the slightest.  As a matter of fact, it was one of the wisest business decisions ever made IMHO.  He weighed the value of his time and decided that paying for production of a television commercial PLUS air time was a better investment for his business than the investment of time needed to make social media marketing work for him.

Even though social media marketing is still a relatively new concept, the internet landscape is already littered with the tattered remains of inactive communities, stagnant Facebook pages and unused blogs.

The good news is that with a little time and effort, most of these inactive social media marketing tools can be revived and put to good use.

The bad news is that social media marketing will NEVER be a “set it and forget it” proposition – but maybe that’s not really bad news at all.  Maybe that’s the way that eventually we’ll use to separate the good from the bad.


  1. Simon Hamer says:

    The best way to succeed once you realised you are on a treadmill to start off with is to look at the strategy that suits you best.

  2. You are totally right – social media is definitely not something you can just leave to manage itself. But you do need to invest a lot of time in it, and many people just don’t have that.

  3. Kathy says:

    I totally understand wanting a “set it and forget it” method of marketing. I also understand wanting to get model thin overnight by taking a pill. Neither one is realistic!

    Amelia, you’re so right – social media marketing is time consuming – what makes it worse is that it’s not “chimp” work. You can’t hire a $7 an hour employee to do it for you. It takes time and skill to successfully create a marketing message and then share it with the world via social media. That’s why so many “social media marketing” agencies are popping up – because business owners are recognizing

    a) the value of social media marketing and
    b) the time investment involved in a successful social media marketing campaign.

    I have to admit, it positively boggles my mind that big players and marketing masters like Weight Watchers aren’t more savvy about playing this game.

  4. Kathy — You are really right on with this post and I feel a bit uncomfortable. I realize everything you say is true and also that I haven’t been following this advice, especially with Twitter. I think this post reminds me to readjust my priorities and put Twitter and my other social networking opportunities higher on the list. I appreciate the reminder very much:~)

    Saras last blog post..To Boldly Go Anger Free

  5. Kathy says:

    Sara – Get Tweetdeck. If that’s where your “people” are hanging it – it’s where you should be. On the other hand…

  6. Hi Kathy. I think we get lost in the mechanics of it all, and the business, and the marketing, and the stats, blah, blah, blah… and forget to have FUN! I’m having way more fun on Twitter than I ever thought I would.

    Davinas last blog post..Positively Breathing — 5 Ways to Say Yes to Change

  7. Social media marketing is never ending. I use social media to connect with others. I have not, however, used it yet as a conscious marketing strategy.

    Stacey / Create a Balances last blog post..Authentic Happiness Series – Part Four (Career)

  8. Well, Dell did have the distinct advantage of being around, and on quite a large scale, before Twitter was even a gleam in someone’s eye.

    “Dude, you’re gettin a Dell !!” Remeber that guy on the ad! Jeez, annoying. But effective.

    And here I am in Austin, Texas. Dell Central. And on a Dell. Laptop 4.5 years old now, but I’ll make it stretch at least 6 years.

    But I digress.

    Way digress.


    Naturally social – check
    Existing blog – check
    Tenacity – check.

    But to what end being tenacious on Social Media for me? Just the thought tires me out!

    But I like YOU. I like your blog. And my other blog buds. And that’s good enough for me! (For now anyway.)

    Jannie Funsters last blog post..Bord On A Wire, 7 & 8

  9. Kathy says:

    Jannie – you’re so funny.

    Davina, Stacey and Jannie – Now I feel a bit like the preacher who spends Sunday night complaining about the people who don’t come to Sunday night services.

    You three ladies are wonderfully “tenacious” – the people I’m “complaining” about aren’t here and if they were, this post or others like it drove them away.

  10. You are so right. I have a great blog, and accounts with Twitter, FaceBook and LinkedIn. There are too few hours in the day, and I need to have a life. BUT … I made an investment in this stuff, particularly the blog. If I want to get my investment to pay off, I have to work it. Ok, back to work…

    By the way, LOVE your new logo!


    Jeans last blog post..Turning Potshots into Positive Energy