AUTHORS NOTE: I’m not a grammar major. I’m not even a grammar minor. I am passionate about board shops. If you see grammar mistakes, feel free to email me. If you agree, disagree, or just have a comment. Find the post below on my instagram and leave a comment. Thanks.
Is your social media building a community or growing demand for other brands?
When I started the Board Shop Day Instagram account (@boardshopday), I thought it would be easy to showcase how special Surf, Skate, and Snow shops are. I would simply follow board shops, repost images of events and all the epic things that happen only at Board Shops. Currently, I’m following 1,175 board shops from around the globe and you would think I’d have tons of content. It turns out that’s not the case. Every morning, I scroll my Instagram feed looking for interesting content. When I don’t find anything in the feed, I scroll through retailer’s account pages. Majority of the time I see product, product, product. It would be one thing if it was the retailer’s shop product or limited edition products that are only sold at their location but it’s normally products from all the major brands.
This got me thinking. How often do those brands post about your shop? Do those brands sell direct? Do those brands sell on Amazon and through other online outlets? Are retailers helping train consumers to shop online? How many product posts does a viewer see before they loose interest in the shop’s social media outlets?
Seth Godin wrote a great book that was published in 2018 titled This is Marketing. He talks about how marketing has changed. How back in the day, when people mainly watched T.V. and read magazines, marketing involved disrupting the masses and getting them to see your product. You could disrupt people because they basically had no choice. If they wanted to watch a show, they had to sit through the commercials. Now, people are on their phones and computers. They have all the control and can turn you off at any moment. You have to be a marketer; you have to know your audience. You need to know who views your social media and says, “This is for people like us”. I don’t want to give away his book but I highly suggest you read it.
People like us. Who are we? We are Surfers, Skaters, and Snowboarders. Does that mean I want to go online and look at products all day? If it does, why wouldn’t I just look at the brands website where I can buy the products? Why wouldn’t I look on Amazon? They have tons of product images, from tons of brands, with free overnight shipping.
I’ll say it again. We are Surfers, Skaters, and Snowboarders. I want to see Surfing, Skateboarding, and Snowboarding. I want to see people like me, doing what I love, and hanging out at a place, I wish I were. THE SHOP. The Shop and what goes on inside those walls is what makes you special. I hate to say it but majority of the products aren’t special anymore. Don’t get me wrong, there are still some products and brands that make products only found at board shops but majority of the brands sell direct, at majors, chains, and through online outlets.
Are you going to invest in yourself and build a community? Build the demand for products with your shops logo on them? Or are you going to build demand for brands that compete with you?