EJM Designs Limited Blog

Wednesday, December 15, 2010

Social Media: State Farm, Tempur-pedic, and Leveraging PR

Tempur-pedic & State Farm have both been doing something in the past several months that I have seen NO other companies doing and I wanted to bring it to light.

Perhaps you've seen this commercial from Tempur-pedic?

"Ask me," they tempt you. "Go to Facebook," they say.

Or perhaps the "People Trust People" commercial from State Farm:

"Talk to State Farm ...but not yet."

Both of these commercials are taking a single idea, leveraging social media, and coming out more transparent and credible for it.

The idea is this: The guy/gal selling you something has words staged to sell. If you hear "X Company is awesome" from them, it doesn't carry NEARLY the weight of hearing "X Company is awesome" from a friend, friend on Facebook, or as a testimonial from an existing customer.

And these companies are taking a chance: if you're looking for negative views of Tempur-pedic or State Farm, you can find them on the internet. They're staking a claim on the positive reviews of their clients, and because they both have a solid product that people are generally happy with, they have faith that YOUR friends or other people you don't necessarily know will speak wonderfully about what they have to offer.

(Side Note: the psychology behind justifying a large purchase that's better than what they had [Tempur-pedic] or "nothing going wrong when nothing happens" [State Farm] is not being addressed here.)

The great thing about these campaigns is that it's a design every small business can emulate (as long as you don't have a backlog of unsatisfied clients).

How does it work for small business? Easy.

When you're networking, when you're selling yourself, when people ask (and they should): Why should I choose you? You answer them by saying "Here's what makes us special..." AND "We can do what you need to increase value to your company, but here are a couple people/companies that know what we can do. Talk to them first. If you're still interested, my number's on the card."

You, too, can leverage organic PR to grow your business. You just didn't know you needed to do it yet. Now you do. Make it happen.

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