Social Media and Wood Flooring

After a busy season of traveling, where I get behind on my posts it’s always so difficult to get started again.  I keep hearing the words of social media expert Paul Guillin in my head telling me “you just have to keep at the blogging thing for a year before you’ll really see the results”.  In theory I think he’s right, but at the same time not having seen the pot of gold at the end of the rainbow it gets difficult at times to keep moving along.  However, I have passed some milestones in the social media arena this year.  I thought I’d highlight them here for you.  Maybe it will serve to motivate your efforts and reinvigorate my own.

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1) I sold a wood floor on twitter.  I’d have to be honest and say this was not intentional but it did happen.  I was searching around the twittersphere to see who was talking about wood floors.  It seems if you do this search you get predominantly 5 things.  First you get people who are saying varying versions of “I love sliding on hardwood floors in my socks!”, secondly you find people saying “I hate sleeping on my hardwood floor”, then third you get some marketing bots offering Bona floor cleaner, imagine that Bona selling in yet another arena?, fourthly you’ll find wood flooring manufacturers and contractors touting their latest product or install and lastly you’ll get homeowners who are considering having wood floors or those who have new floors asking questions.

I happened to engage one homeowner who had asked a question about tearing out carpet and replacing with wood flooring.  That tweet turned into a email conversation, then to a phone conversation and then to directing him to a local distributor of our products who sold him a floor.  Bizarre.

2)  I sold a specific floor that was highlighted on a blog post.  This was a random set of circumstances where I had posted a picture of a newly installed floor.  I got a phone call from a homeowner asking about that particular type of flooring the very next day.  Turns out he had seen that picture and it was exactly what he was looking for.  I was able to connect him with a local distributor of our products as well and he bought the floor the following week.  Doesn’t happen every week but it was interesting to see the sales cycle and its potential.

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3)  I successfully used one of my boards on Pinterest to convince a customer that we had the product they were looking for.  The Pinterest showroom closed the deal.

4)  I was recognized at a trade show as a result of my blogging.  Fame!  Finally.  I was counting down the 15 seconds in my head.

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I was approached by a number of people at the latest NWFA trade show in Orlando asking me a lot of questions about my social media efforts and whether or not they were paying off.  I have to say its a labor of love and the results are both difficult to measure and at this point fairly insignificant.  However I do believe the idea has merit for one reason.

When people go looking for a solution to a problem today, they rarely pick up a magazine or newspaper, they don’t turn on the radio and start scanning through stations looking for answers nor do they turn on the TV and start surfing trying to find a program or commercial that will have a product or program to solve their problem.  They do however open up a browser and type their query into a search engine.  If I can provide content that is focused on answering the questions that people are asking that pertain to wood floors then I am going to show up on the radar from time to time.  If my content answers their question then they are probably going to ask me another question and see if I can ultimately offer them a product that will solve their problem.

I’m interested to hear what others in our industry are up to in the social media world.  Chime in with thoughts and/or questions and let’s start a discussion.

About samcobb

woodflooringtrends.com
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7 Responses to Social Media and Wood Flooring

  1. tfsbj7@mindspring.com says:

    Might be hard to keep being inspired, but rest assured your scribblings are read. There are probably a lot of us lurkers out here who have an interest in wood floors one way or another.

    Thanks
    -skip-

  2. hickmanwoods says:

    Hey Sam, I was at the NWFA convention and was talking to my dad and someone else about the social media and marketing because I’ve just been hired to start working with this for Allegheny Mountain Hardwood Flooring. My Dad, Dennis Hickman, said that he knew you. I found your blog or you somewhere a few months ago, and have been following your blog since.

    I’ve been doing the Facebook page for a few months now and I’ve just started a blog of my own.( hickmanwoods.wordpress) I appreciate that quote though about it taking a year to really see results. Grandpa keeps asking me if I’ve sold any floors yet from it. I’ll have to tell him what the experts say about it.

    • samcobb says:

      Jess it really does take time to settle in. Keywords are key. If you know what people are searching for you can game the system by writing specifically to their queries. The real trick for us at Real Wood Floors is we don’t sell anything directly so getting the consumers interested in our products is only step one. The second step is successfully connecting them to a local dealer or distributor and that can be tricky.

  3. Beth says:

    I’d like to say ditto to what Skip said. We are out here!

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