During a night at home on the couch recently, I watched the 2013 comedy The Internship, staring Vince Vaughn and Owen Wilson.
In a nutshell, the movie is about two blokes in their 40s who are made redundant from their sales jobs, and decide to career-change into the world of tech. To get a foot in the door, they take up summer internships at Google.
While I wouldn’t call the movie a modern day classic, there is a particular scene with Sal the pizza shop owner, that absolutely encapsulates the fears of many small business owners when it comes to migrating online.
Like so small business owners (around 52%), Sal had no web presence, and was suffering as a result. In response to Vince Vaughn’s online marketing cheerleading, Sal says things like “Look I’ve always done things the same way: Yellow Pages, flyers, and [the local newspaper]. We’re not going to change anything – we’re getting by ok.”
He doesn’t realise that his small neighbourhood pizza joint has an online cult following until he’s shown. “Look at all these people talking about your business – don’t you want to be able to talk back to them??” one of the hero’s declares. Vince Vaughn chimes in: “We’re not asking you to abandon your neighbourhood. All we’re saying is, what if your neighbourhood got a little bit bigger?”
*Spoiler alert*, the climax of the film is when the pair manage to recruit the pizza shop owner to their cause; namely to a) build a website, and b) use Google adwords to better market his business. Everyone’s happy.
While for some this example could be written off as just Hollywood fluff, I challenge you: is it really?
As a few readers may recall, I’m in the process of moving house. It’s looking like there will be a week or so in between where I will need to store my things, and a quick online search a few days ago returned a number of options.
Not surprisingly, in a city such as Sydney, there are literally dozens of storage companies to choose from. I checked out the prices of a whole stack, and they all hovered around the same price range. However, there is one that has very clearly stood out.
Since visiting their site, this one company – Taxibox – has not allowed me to forget them. Everytime I visit Facebook, Youtube, Twitter, LinkedIn – you name it – Taxibox is there, waving at me from my screen. It’s a classic example of social media advertising done well, and it’s working. They’re now top of mind, and in all likelihood I’ll be booking them next week.
So what’s to lose? Boost your online advertising, and get social. I dare you.