Red Adair’s words still as apt now as before Facebook launch

Lee Kenny
Lee Kenny

Facebook launched just 6 months before the famous Texan Red Adair passed away but his most famous quote is as apt today as when he first coined it.

“If you think it’s expensive to hire a professional to do the job, wait until you hire an amateur.”

Sadly marketing seems to be one of those areas for business that normally competent owners seem to apply strange logic to. It seems ok to hire a relative to handle social media because they “use Facebook a lot themselves” or perhaps you can have a go yourself. “Because how hard can it be, right?”

This is like having your rewiring done by someone who changed a plug on a vacuum cleaner once. Can they cobble together a solution after watching a YouTube video? Probably. But would you risk it with an essential like gas or electricity? Of course not.

This may sound a bit dramatic but as a business it doesn’t matter how great your product is, how much expertise you have or whether you are the best. It helps, but unless you have sales to back it up, your business is only going one way.

I’m a huge fan of face to face, but a majority (if not now, shortly) do their research online first. This may be via Google or more likely Facebook or Twitter.

Facebook this week announced a free payment platform that operates via text message for US users. My bet is that this will be a dominant player in sub-£30 transactions within two years.

If you do a good job of demonstrating your expertise or displaying your widgets, then customers may have a conversation with you.

Most of my time is spent with start-ups or firms with under five employees such as photographers, bookkeepers and website owners. All have tried their hand with social media to varying levels of success. Usually it comes at the cost of reduced margin using giveaways to attract new customers.

Whilst this is one way to go, using a well thought out strategy you could be attracting higher paying and more frequent customers to your business.

Don’t have the budget to hire an agency? Most businesses don’t. Even the low cost packages can hurt if you don’t see results quickly. Luckily there are a lot of resources out there.

On Facebook there are groups where other business owners will show exactly what did and didn’t work. Peers will happily critique your website, sales materials and give you free advice.

Twitter is home to #HalifaxHour, #CalderdaleHour and lots of other weekly slots where hundreds of customers and businesses meet each week to discuss business and find new suppliers.

At Snowflake we also run a club that offers exert training delivered online plus a thriving community to support every online question you may have.

This was deliberately priced at under £30 per month to ensure you save time and money avoiding costly mistakes.