Anyone who goes on Linked In can view Jan Bills’ complete resume. Transparency is important when you’re trying to build a national rep and two brands, including one for work wear (Garden Hoe) that will launch. “If someone wants to hire me, everything you want to know about me is right there,” says Bills, owner of Two Women and a Hoe in Detroit, Mich. “And, I think that’s really important with social media.”
Bills is a serial entrepreneur, and gardening is her passion – and she has a love affair with social media. That is, using social media to drive brand identity. She’s a stickler for running the numbers in her business, and she applies this rule to her social media efforts. “If you post something and no one gives it a thumbs-up…the numbers are right there,” she says.
Here's some of Bills online program called Social Media by the Numbers.
1. You design your garden, you design your brand. They say that 80 percent of social media messaging should be “everything else,” and 20 percent should be sales. But Bills is a rule-breaker. “I never sell a thing, it’s a big turn-off,” she says. That tone is just not her personality, not her brand. “Instead, I have positioned myself to be a subject matter expert.”
2. Allow your garden, and brand, to bloom organically. Forget the short-cuts. Bills says a lasting brand (and landscape) must be given the breathing room to flourish over time. Same goes for a brand. “And then it will be allowed to flourish – if you force it, your brand will not be sustainable.”
3. Reduce the weeds (and reads). Forget the 800-word blog post. No one wants to read it, Bills says. “The average person has an 8-second attention span. I have a 3-second attention span. There is a whole group of people who have less of an attention span than that. Be concise about what you are putting out there.”
Listen to Bills talk more about her social mediaprogram here.