Should My Business Use Social Media?

I recently spoke with a General Manager at a golf course who said, “Most of our golfers are 55 and over . . . Do you expect me to believe that golfers over the age of 55 are using Facebook?”

Do golfers use social media? The short answer is YES, golfers over the age of 55 are using Facebook on a regular and consistent basis. In fact, according to a Pew Internet study, more than 57% of Internet users between the ages of 50 and 64 are on social networking sites. To go further, 74% of people making more than $75,000 per year use social media sites and 74% of college graduates use social media sites.

The largest growing demographic on Facebook is the 50 and over crowd. As my 89 year-old grandmother, Lenore Welborn said, “I joined Facebook to keep in touch with my grandchildren. It’s how I keep tabs on them and know what they’re doing.” The over 55’ers began using Facebook to keep in touch with their grandchildren, but are now using Facebook to connect with their interests and are using social media to pursue their own hobbies.

Do Golfers Use Social MediaOne example is golfer Bob Pouliot who retired years ago and now plays golf almost every day of the week. He connected with our golf course through the Los Serranos Country Club Facebook page and became highly active. Bob contributed 12 articles to the 19th Hole Stories found on the Los Serranos Country Club blog. He encouraged his family and friends to visit each one of the stories he had written about playing golf at his home course. These stories helped to connect him more deeply with the golf course, connected new friends to the course, contributed to an active and vibrant community and increased sales as Bob and his friends began playing at Los Serranos Country Club more and more often.

The General Manager, in the before mentioned comment, is also explaining something very telling of the golf industry as a whole. Golfers are frequenting golf courses less and less often and the response seems to be to cater to the older generation as they are the ones who are playing golf the most right now, but if the golf industry is going to thrive that strategy needs to shift. We need to be thinking about new ways to expose new golfers to the game. We need to start reaching those people in the language they speak and today’s language is social media marketing.

Spend any time with someone under the age of 40 and you’ll understand why social media marketing makes so much sense. Advertise where the eyeballs are.

The younger generation will not be picking up a newspaper or flipping through a magazine, they will be looking online to find out about the things that interest them and if you’re not online you’re missing an opportunity.

As a 31-year old golfer who loves the game of golf, I know how important it is to change the way we reach new golfers . . . By being active on social media and the Internet we can increase play at golf courses all over the country . . . Getting each golf course to implement a social media strategy designed to promote, encourage and enable young golfers to take up the game should be the first and foremost responsibility of any community golf course. Teach the younger generation to love the game and you’ll have customers for life.

If you’re still not sure that social media or Facebook marketing is important for your golf course take a look at the Facebook “Check-Ins” for your course (even if no one in your organization ever created a Facebook Page for it your golf course will still have one).

The “Check-In” feature on Facebook is for Facebook users to indicate that they are currently at your golf course through their mobile phones which then is relayed to all of the family and friends who are connected with them through Facebook.

According to only 10% of Facebook users actively use the “Check-In” feature, so multiply the number of people you’ve had check in to your course since your Facebook page started by ten and that will give you a rough idea of how many golfers at your golf course use Facebook. The number will most certainly surprise you.

At our golf course, a nearby location with a similar name as the golf course severely limited our Facebook page “Check-Ins”, but within 18 months, our sample golf course had 3,202 people “Checking-In” at the golf course. Which, according to the 10% rule, means more than 32,020 Facebook users had physically visited this particular golf course.

Do Golfers Use Social Media | Zeb Golf
Facebook Check Ins
Any way you slice it, golfer’s are using social media and more and more golfers will continue to use social media in the upcoming years. At golf courses, we have an amazing opportunity to use social media to develop strategies designed to build a better, more engaging, more interactive sport. Social media will help us to connect with users of all ages and help bring them into this game. While many people consider golf to be an individual sport, the most fun comes from the interactions that occur between people. As David Kramer, Senior Vice President at Los Serranos Country Club once told me, “Golf was the first form of social media,” and in a way, he’s right.

People golf because they can hang out with friends, tell stories and become part of a community. Social media can do that better than anything out there today. If you want your golf course to thrive, you need to build the game of golf, to build the game you need to increase exposure and there’s no better way to increase exposure than by using social media.

So . . . Do golfers use social media? According to the National Golf Foundation, 71% of golfers use Facebook, LinkedIn and Twitter . . . and that percentage is only getting higher.

If your golf course could use a boost with a stronger social media presence contact Zeb Welborn at (909) 973 – 9089 or by email You can also sign up for our email newsletter which will provide additional tips and advice on how to increase your online presence by filling out our Welborn Social Media Newsletter Sign Up Form.

To get even more information on how to increase play and introduce more golfers to your golf course. Visit 19th Hole Media where Zeb Welborn can help your golf course grow!
A Content Marketing Hub Every Marketer Must Have | by Niveen Salem
Posted on November 29, 2012 by Zeb Welborn

Niveen Salem – Elite Marketing Secrets
A Content Marketing Hub Every Marketer Must Have

What is a content marketing hub every marketer must have?

Sonia Simone, an author and one of Copyblogger’s co-founders calls it a “content hub – a centerpiece for your content marketing”. You probably figured it out. Yes, it’s a blog!

What is a Blog?

A blog is a online educational center about your business based on value offered. In marketing terms, it’s called attraction marketing. It’s simply your real estate piece of land on the internet. It’s a place to interact with your potential customers. But before you start a blog you need to understand your audience. This will stem from having a strong niche. Only then you’ll be able to research their problems, issues and concerns and help them find the solutions through writing a content marketing strategy about the problems. It’s the foundation of all social media tools.

But, wait a second: I thought social media is Twitter and Facebook?

Social media outlets are great to start a conversation but ultimately you want to bring your visitors back to your home base – your blog. Creating a social media marketing plan for your blog is essential in promoting your content. Here comes the importance of all social media channels such as Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, You Tube and Pinterest.

Why Blogging – 10 Benefits to Start your Own Blog?

Thought Leader: When you blog you’re perceived as a thought leader and an expert in your industry or niche. People will start coming to you for questions, concerns and problems that they need answers for. It creates a conversation rather than a one way monologue.
Trusted Source: When providing valuable content in your blog, your readers will build a trust relationship with you which turns into a lead and a lead turns into a sale.
Blogging Sharpens Your Saw: When you’re blogging regularly, you’re forced to read and educate yourself about your industry. Eventually you’ll become more informed and educated than your competitors. Your presentations will become better, your problem solving abilities and skills will enhance and your tool and resource systems will grow. You’ll simply become a better teacher who have an answer to every question. All this from blogging!
Freedom: A blog gives you an incredible amount of freedom where no one can tell you what to promote or not. You have total control over your content and your audience. No one has the right to flag your content as inappropriate or decide suddenly to cancel your Facebook Fan Page or delete your LinkedIn group discussions. One of my LinkedIn group discussions was suddenly deleted after reaching 42 comments in a few days!
You have 100% control over the look, design and functionality of your site
Blogging Traffic: Statistics show that blogging creates 55% more traffic and visitors to companies. Source: Hubspot.
Build a Tribe: Blogging creates a tribe of followers, fans, readers and build relations with potential customers
Your blog is a great way to generate leads. You can always make money blogging by monetizing your blog if you’re in the affiliate marketing industry
You can include many sources of content marketing in your blog (not only writing) – such as a video or a podcast.
By 2013, it is projected that 128 million people in the US will be blog readers. Source: MyMarketingDept.
There are 100’s of other statistics that you can search online to find out more benefits of blogging.

How to Create a Blog?

Nowadays creating a blog became a very simple process as 1, 2, 3:

You need to choose and create a domain name
Then create a web hosting account
Then use a simple WordPress blog theme
How to Blog?

I know the objection as I was there before you: ” But I’m not a writer! What am I going to write about?” There are 5 reasons why you can become a killer blogger. How to blog is very simple once you follow these steps:

  1. Write about your passion
  2. Offer valuable dynamic content and avoid putting your readers to sleep with these 6 ways.
  3. Use marketing tactics and strategies when writing a blog post. Here are 3 valuable tactics:

Be the Resource Your Customers Really Need
Answer the Unanswered Questions
Find the Questions Your Customers are Asking
4. You’ll always need to improve your blog post using these 5 tips

Plan your blog post before you start writing
Give examples of how and what to do, not only why
Always end your post with a call to action
Edit your title, introduction and conclusion
Use easy formatting
5. Content curation is a well known concept in blogging which allows you to write a blog post about something you’ve read online. THE RULE is to refer to the author’s name and article link in your post. When I first started blogging on my blog – Elite Marketing Secrets – I used this method a lot until I was able to create my own content.

  1. You can find blogging ideas to create your own content using these sources:

Other blogs (curating content)
Real life story
Success / failure stories
Social media
Best of…..
How to…..
Case studies
Solve a problem
Your blog comments
7. Humanize or personalize your blog posts with your personality. Nothing is more boring than reading a blog post on a certain subject without feeling the author’s personality involved in the post. Mention your experiences, likes, dislikes, others experiences or stories. Storytelling is the #1 reason for grabbing your audience attention. It’s key in content marketing. If you master storytelling, then you mastered marketing and that is what 99.99% of marketers lack.

  1. Here are a few more good blogging practices and tips:

Be consistent
Be organized
Be specific
Make it about your audience not about you (be interested not interesting)
Write a compelling headline
Engage your readers
Respond to your comments
Promote your content
Optimize your post
Join a blogging community
Share your expertise and others
Free Blogging Book

I’d like to offer a free blogging book here as an added value. Inside the book, you’ll discover how to blog your way to the top of your home business organization. The concepts in this book can be applied on any business.
Building a Twitter community is the most important skill to develop when starting a Twitter campaign. Fortunately, building a strong Twitter community is easy to do. Follow these steps and you’ll be on your way to establishing a thriving Twitter community:

Tweet, Tweet Often and Tweet with a Purpose – Before you start your Twitter campaign begin by thinking of your purpose . . . or generate a mission statement. Our mission statement is to help business owners share their passion with others. We work with passionate business owners to help them increase their exposure, build their businesses and become positive examples for their communities. Every tweet we send out is aligned with our goal of helping business owners become successful. You won’t see tweets from us about what we had for dinner or our plans for the weekend. Be true to your mission, tweet, and tweet often. The more active you are on Twitter the faster your community will grow.
Provide Value – Everyone says you need to provide value, but I never really understood what that meant. Value is an ambiguous term, but it still applies. My understanding of value is offering something to someone else that is a genuine effort to improve their lives. Many people online, and on Twitter post what I call, “look at me articles.” The greatest way to give value and create a more enthusiastic community is to genuinely try to help others. It helps by addressing specific people’s issues and concerns and then sharing those issues with others.
Actively Listen – The coolest thing about Twitter in my opinion is the search feature, type in any word into the bar at the top of the Twitter page and every single tweet that had that term in it will show up. This provides marketers with an amazing opportunity to reach out to people who are actively communicating on Twitter. For our clients we actively look for users who are communicating about their product or service and we reach out to them . . . we listen to them and we alter our strategies based off of their responses. Listen actively and you will have a more engaged community.
Don’t Sell – Don’t post “Look at Me” articles . . . most people get on Twitter and constantly post tweets that sell . . . buy this or buy that. Do that and be sure to create a non-existent Twitter community. No one wants to constantly be sold to. So, don’t sell . . . be helpful and sales will come. Use Twitter as a way to generate relationships first . . . trust second . . . a whole bunch of other things between and sales last.
Follow Others – Follow others who post tweets that resonate with you and engage with them. The more you engage others, the more likely they are to engage with you.
Use Your Face as Your Profile Pic – People connect more to other people so be sure to use a profile picture that shows your face and preferrably a happy face at that. We personally use a logo for our business twitter account, @WelbornMedia, but I usually connect with more people using my personal Twitter account, @ZebWelborn which has a picture of my beautiful face. It always feels nicer to know who your talking to and easier for people to develop an emotional connection with you . . . thus making your community stronger.
Look at Other Peoples Lists. Once you find people to connect with and people who you enjoy communicating with, check out the lists they’ve created. Chances are there will be more people like them that share their passions and interests and you can connect with them thus building your Twitter community.
Jump into Conversations – Don’t be afraid to get your feet wet. Conversations are happending all over Twitter all the time. Twitter chats are a great way to get involved. But, most importantly, don’t be afraid to respond to people . . . most people love getting responses to their tweets, so don’t be shy and meet more people.
Followers Don’t Matter. Active Followers Do. – The amount of people following you will not matter when it comes to making sales . . . the amount of engaged followers will. There are tons of automatic following programs and Twitter has a large amount of users who don’t use the service on a regular basis, meaning a follower who is no longer using Twitter is no longer seeing your Tweets. Building an engaged following is much more important than building numbers. Don’t be obsessed with numbers, be obsessed with relationships.
Be Consistent – I heard an analogy once that being a Twitter user is like being a farmer. Few people have the patience to be a farmer, to plant the seeds, to tend to the plants all year long and then to harvest the plants at the end of the season. A farmer can’t be absent during the process . . . if he does not tend to his crops, his crops will die before it’s time to harvest. Twitter is the same way . . . You plant seeds by initiating conversations with different people. You cultivate those relationships on a regular consistent basis and, then, and only then will you harvest the fruits of your labor. If you ignore your crops they die. If you ignore your Twitter followers they will not become your customers.

The Tutoring Solution –
Share Stuff – As the owner of The Tutoring Solution, our mission was to help inspire students to become successful in and out of the classroom. To develop connections with other groups similar to ours we began sharing messages from other members of the #EdChat group, as a result they learned about our programs and our goals and began sharing our stuff. We then, worked together to promote our missions and our community grew.

Use directories like Twellow, Twubble, Twits Like Me, etc. There are numerous Twitter directories that has influential Twitter users in your field, you can then use those directories to follow people who share your interests and in turn may follow you. At the least you’ll see what influential people are doing to make an impact in your community.
Follow those who follow you. If someone follows you and they’re an active Twitter user, follow them back . . . not only should you follow them, but you should also reach out to them and thank them for following you. I feel honored every time someone new follows me and I want to make sure my Twitter users know how honored I truly am.
Develop a Strong Bio – Often times, Twitter users will check out your Twitter bio to see if you’re someone they would like to follow. Be sure your Twitter bio is compelling and lets Twitter users know exactly what kind of person you are and what kind of relationship you will be creating with them. Optimize your Twitter account . . . be sure to include target keywords, links to your website, add your location and give users a reason to follow you.
Use a Strong Brand Name – Your name is important. Use your own personal name, a name that goes with your brand, and one that Twitter users will want to connect with.
Create Lists – You can create lists on Twitter which will help you when you start to follow too many people to keep track of. I’m involved in many Twitter discussions: SEO, Google AdWords, Social Media, and Education just to name a few. By putting your followers into groups you can then jump into their discussions by accessing the list you have created for each group.
Introduce People to Your Followers – As you communicate with people its important to share them with others. If you know two people who share the same passion, connect them with each other. Twitter is all about building relationships . . . Help people build relationships and they will help you build your community.
Follow People from Different Niches – Everyone has their area of expertise, but that doesn’t mean you need to limit the users you follow. If I only engaged in discussions with people who associated themselves with “Social Media,” I would be missing out on the potential to connect with new customers. As a result, I look for niches where my services could either be used or easily referred by and connect with people there.
Reciprocate – If someone does something nice for you . . . return the favor.
Try to Connect with Twitter Friends Offline – While working for Los Serranos Country Club, I am frequently trying to connect with golfers offline. Often, they will tell me they are headed to the golf course and I will connect with them. This gives me an opportunity to meet them and get a face to the name, but it also enhances the bond we have with each other and the golf course. I’ve always told businesses that one of the benefits of attracting people that use social media is that they have access to much more people, the people who I have met at the golf course have sent positive messages about Los Serranos Country Club to their lists of friends on Twitter, Facebook, through email and in person. If you can build those connections you’re on the right track. Check out this video of a user we connected with offline from our social media campaign – Louis Castillo on Golf at Los Serranos Country Club in Chino Hills.
Build Up. Don’t Put Down. – Nobody likes a bully. Being negative and angry is not conducive towards building a strong community. Everyone loves people who make them feel good about themselves. Be a person who makes people feel good and your community will grow.
Use Twitter Tools – There are enormous amounts of Twitter tools you can use to help manage your Twitter account(s). Do online searches or ask other Twitter users how Twitter tools have helped them. I’ve personally used HootSuite, TweetDeck, TweetAdder and TweetChat at different times to help me manage my Twitter accounts, but there are lots more.
Learn the Lingo – Do you know what DM, @, RT, MT, Tweet, Tw, # mean? Ask the people on Twitter and they’ll tell you. (I can’t tell you everything)
Pay Attention to @ Replies – (Ok, I’ll tell you this one) @ Replies are when people mention you directly in a tweet. Respond to all @ replies in order to generate a discussion and build a stronger relationship. @ replies is where I spend most of my time on Twitter . . . when you build a big enough community you will spend most of your time there too.
Add Your Twitter ID to All Signatures – As with anything you’re using, be sure to let as many people know you’re using Twitter as possible. This means including it in any documentation you may have, in your email signatures, on your Facebook page and anywhere else you can think of.
Read the Bios of Those You Follow – You can develop an understanding of what makes people tick by reading their profiles and then develop more meanginful relationships as a result . . . the more you care about their interests, the more they will care about yours.
Know Who the Players Are – Know who the leaders are in your industry on Twitter . . . Follow them, learn from them and try to connect with them. By reaching out to people who are perceived as the experts in an industry you are associating yourself with the experts . . . and who knows . . . if you follow all these steps you may become the expert yourself.
Get a Personality – Get creative with your tweets . . . the more creative you are, the more you’ll stand out and the more people will want to follow you.
Scrapbook Expo Tweet
The most important thing to remember when building a vibrant Twitter community is that it takes time and effort. You must work at it, but that is what makes social media so amazing . . . the small business owners have the same opportunity for success as the big guys and in some cases, when done right, can outshine the largest of competitors.

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