If you’ve noticed that I’ve entitled my blogging journey, “Pissed Off CEO”, you may have also noticed that many of my previous articles had very little to do with actually being pissed off.  This was an intentional diversion as I’m really a nice guy and not pissed off in general; unless I don’t get my morning coffee and I can’t find my baseball cap.

There is something that gets my goat though; something that drives me up a wall, ticks me off and just plain makes me miffed.  What is this exasperating folly that gets under my skin?  Well, glad you asked.

Whether you’re part of an established business with a large marketing department or a small start-up with a mere marketing cubicle, what does marketing mean to you?  Google’s definition states that it is the action or business of promoting and SELLING products or services.  Now what does branding mean to you?  Business Dictionary defines it as the process involved in creating a unique name and image for a product in the consumer’s mind.

Here’s what I’m getting at and the reason I spewed-out dictionary definitions.  I think businesses and marketing departments in particular, are touting social media as the greatest thing since the 4 P’s and have made branding, top priority.  This is the fluff of which I speak.  They’re disregarding the purpose of marketing: TO SELL.

It’s all about branding these days in the form of social media.  – Attracting customers to click, like and follow.  Marketing success is measured by tallying the total amounts of these clicks, likes and followers.  While social media branding is gaining ground, actual selling is being shelved to attend to later.

I’m reminded of a story told by one of my colleagues.  His mom used to prepare a special meal for him every Sunday.  Each time, he would thank her with a hug, to which she’d respond, “In which bank can I deposit this hug?” Her hugs were collecting, but the bank account remained empty.  It all ended well several Sunday’s later when her son finally creatively replied, “In your heart’s bank, where it counts.”

The point I’m making is: Can YOU take your clicks, likes and followers to the bank?  Where does social media count in bringing profits to your company?  I’m not against the platform of social media.  It’s definitely a great tool for branding and it’s one of several channels to sell with.   I think it’s important to not get caught up in the hype of clicks, likes and followers, though.  Don’t make branding-noise and equate it with success.  Keep the sale as the #1 focus and be able to measure the effect of marketing on sales with actual numbers.  At the end of the day, customers do have to buy.  

Sadly, in this boom of social cyberspace, retailers are finding it hard to be profitable.  This is why I’m pissed off and why I started Raange.  It’s time to put the fluff aside and get actual, measurable sales that you can take to the bank, isn’t it?

What have your clicks done for you lately?