Try a little ‘selfie’ promotion

On the shop floor or at a boat show, making a sale is all about creating a relationship – everyone knows that. It’s the same online.

In a competitive industry, if a prospective customer can’t remember your name or your card found its way to the wastebasket, there’s a good chance they’ll be looking elsewhere.

Showing that personality online, however, is a delicate balancing act, you certainly don’t want to gossip or complain publicly, but you also don’t want to focus to closely on the business.

Actor James Franco detailed his own personal balancing act in a column for the New York Times.

OK, we in the boating industry might not be as famous as Franco, and it’s possible that we’re maybe slightly less attractive, but the “selfie king” has plenty of lessons for the rest of us.

The number one lesson here: be personable. It seems obvious, obtuse even, but go take a look at some Facebook or Twitter feeds in the industry. There’s plenty of sales promotions to tune out and products to scroll past, but a severe dearth in personality.

Next time you’re staring at the blue glow of Facebook wishing you had something to say, go sit in a boat and take a selfie to show just how much fun it is to be on the water. Snap a picture of your servicemen in the middle of a complicated job to show the care they put into their work. Slap a snorkel on your salesman and show all those prospective customers that these are fun guys who love boating.

There might be groans when you break out the camera phone, but at the end of the day, if you can show a customer that your business is filled with good people just like them, that’s one step toward another sale.

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