To Our Geyserville Chamber Business Members:

Sheila created the following as a pep-talk and strategy brainstorm for local businesses to use Social Media as a way to stand out against the competition.  Even though your businesses might be physically closed there are possibilities to connect with customers.

 

We would also like to highlight businesses that remain open to serve a vital need in our community and/or are offering specials, like those we have seen on social media already.  If you are currently doing something different, or are operating with special hours, please email the Chamber at geyservillechamberofcommerce@gmail.com, or post to Instagram or Facebook and tag us @visitgeyserville.  We will try to provide a comprehensive list of businesses that are open in our eNewsletter as we get the info. Please share  if you are serving the public by phone, or through an online presence, or with special hours.  Even if you are currently closed, we would like to be able to help you get the word out to all our members.  This newsletter can reach a totally different segment of our membership and community than those who follow you on Instagram and Facebook.

 

COVID-19 SOCIAL MEDIA STRATEGY

Keep in Mind:

How Can your Business Be Different?

Right now I see MOST businesses using the curbside pick-up, gift card, and discount on shipping rates strategies.  Yes, these are good strategies.  Problem is… I’ve already started tuning out these messages.  When all posts start to sound the same, your followers and customers will tune you out.  So ask HOW CAN I STAND OUT?  What makes your business different?  What creative way can I offer the same thing as everyone else, but do it DIFFERENTLY?  How can I present something that is different and CATCHY1

 

Now is the Time to Go ALL-IN on Social Media

Instagram and Facebook are where everyone’s attention is right now.  People are following the news on these platforms, as well as keeping up with friends and the latest local news. You need to start HEAVILY marketing on both platforms EVERY SINGLE DAY!  Pictures, video, live video!  Come up with a consistent plan to show up on Social Media every single day. If you are at home… no problem!  Find a wall that is a neutral color or go outside to a neutral background.  You can do all of this from home.  The people you engage with now, will turn into CUSTOMERS when you reopen!

 

Take Video and Pictures

People are stuck inside.  they want an escape and a break.  They want to virtually walk through the vineyards.  They want to see bud-break.  They want to see nature.  They want to see glorious food photos to inspire their senses.  Give them a daily piece of photo/video candy.  Right now Zoo’s are going viral on both Facebook and Instagram because they are letting Penguins out to walk around the property!  Everyone is tuning in to “Penguin Cam”.  What “Cam” can you show daily?  Bud Break Cam, Walk-in-the-Vineyard Cam, Pasta Cam, Cowboy Hat Cam… Get creative!

 

Online Classes

This is HUGE right now.  Everyone is going online to teach their followers something.  Dance, meditation, drawing.  I have seen it all.  Can you have a daily class?  Swirl-a-glass 101? Sniffing 101?  Gin’Gilli’s could do little decor tips.  The point is, you can teach your customers something!  At the end of the video, go for a sale.  If they watch, maybe they get a special code for a discount.

 

Now is a great time to REMIND customers of the history of your business.  Make posts and videos giving them the scoop.  Don’t do it all in one video.  Spread your content out over several short posts.  When did you open?  How did you come up with your business name?  What is your business’ mission?

 

QUICK BRAINSTORM

Everyday encourage people to post pictures with their food, wine, product from your business and TAG you!  Ask them to show how they Quarantine (or Shelter in Place).  Post these pics and videos that come in.  This is how our customers Quarantine (or Shelter in Place)!

 

Spotlight employees that are working.  I want to know about your employees who are working.  Where are they from?  Do they have a family?  What are their favorite things to do?  What do they love?  Play on your followers heartstrings.  Customers become RAVING fans when they feel a part of the family.  Show us who is in your business family.  Why are they the heart of your business. I want stories about these fabulous workers who keep your business going.

 

If you don’t feel you can do this, watch YouTube videos!  There are loads of YouTube videos on how to do LIVE Videos, Instagram Stories, FB Marketing, etc.  Spend some time watching these videos and implement a new strategy to learn daily.

MORE SPECIFIC IDEAS FOR ALL BUSINESS CATEGORIES

Curbside Service (Wineries & Restaurants)

Post a photo/video of you taking your product to the curb!  I want DAILY posts.  Post over and over again.  The idea is that people will see how bustling our curbside pick-up is and they will want to be a part of the action.  People need to SEE that other people are using this service so they can feel like it is okay. Use this peer pressure!  When they see others in town taking advantage of this service they will want to try it out.

 

Wineries

This goes for you too!  Show videos and photos of all the wine you are shipping out!  Post this consistently, EVERYDAY!  I want video of cases heading out the door.  I want names of customers ordering wine.  I want everyone who follows you to know that you are ACTIVELY shipping orders.

 

For Both Restaurants and Wineries

TELL US!  What are people ordering?  Every single day!  Every order that you ship out.  Make a video, or take a pic.  Tell us who the order in going to–give them a shout out!  Where to they live?  What did they order?  Are they a club member?

 

Get Silly!

Make people smile and laugh.  Have a costume?  Wear it while you take the order out to the curb!  Film a video dancing while you are packing the order.  Make people smile and laugh.  People want and NEED humor right now.

 

Golden Ticket

Everyday, put a coupon/gift-card/surprise in one of the To-Go/Shipped orders.  Make a Social Media post about this.  Emphasize that SOMEONE will get today’s special prize.  Raise everyone’s curiosity.  Who will it be?!  This keeps up the excitement and engagement.

 

Shops

Now is NOT time to go silent!  NOW is the perfect time to sell content from your floor.  People are at home.  On their phones.  Think of your shop like QVC or HSN.  Get on Live Video and Sell Product!  Not everything at once.  Slow and steady.  Do one little section of your store or one product at a time.  Maybe people who purchase can pick the product up curbside?  Maybe you have the ability to ship it out.  Look into these possibilities.  Customers can comment ‘SOLD’ under the video or picture of the item for sale.  Then message them.  Collect their credit card info over the phone if you have to… You can get inventory moving in your store TODAY!  Do videos DAILY!  Maybe pick a time of day that you are going to come on and sell.  Show the product like you are Vanna White.  Show all the details.  Share stories about the product.  Paint a picture for online customers of what it would be like to HAVE that product in their possession.

 

Lodging

Your customers are trapped in their home.  They CAN’T WAIT to break free!  Paint a picture for them of what a vacation could be like once this is over.  Daily tours of rooms perhaps? Create a “Break Out of Quarantine” coupon Code!

 

Final Thoughts

Here’s the deal… Everyone in Healdsburg, Windsor, and Geyserville are pushing the same things.  Shipping wine and curbside food offers are all over the place. This is great, but I fear it will get old real fast.  Try to STAND OUT!  Try not to push a sale in every single post. That’s BORING!  Think of this as dating your customer.  Your customer who hasn’t been on a date in years and is worried, and scared, and stressed out.  Wine and dine them with some courtship.  Pull on their heart strings.  Tell them a story.  Enrich their lives.  Woo them with your personality.  THEN go for the sale.

 

Also, there are way too many hotels and stores that have suddenly gone silent.  I know this is an incredibly challenging time.  You CAN connect with your customers in a friendly way RIGHT NOW and make SALES!  I hope this helps.  Please know, I realize this is a scary and hard time.  I do not want to minimize the challenges your business is facing.  I hope, if anything, this was a little pep-talk.  You GOT THIS!

 

Also, NOTE:  I know Video can be SCARY!  GET OVER IT!  I want you to stand out against your competition.  Be brave!  Make videos… with you in them.  People need human connection right now.  Good luck!

 

Sheila Jane

Geyserville Chamber Social Media Strategist