In digital marketing and in personal life, there is a huge difference between the real deal and getting bamboozled.

I had the pleasure of hanging out with my nieces and nephew over the Thanksgiving holiday! We did the normal: video games, board games, made up Pharmacy Online Marketing Business In Their Facegames, and anything else that would keep them quiet entertained! We went to a local breakfast cafe the morning after our video game marathon. After breakfast we noticed a small store packed full of random stuff. We didn’t have much going on so we went in and looked around, I told the kids that they could pick something out and I would buy it for them. The oldest, a 16 year old girl, decided on a Harry Potter themed chocolate frog. The youngest, a 9 year old girl, obviously chose the exact same thing her big sister did. The middle child, an 11 year old boy, decided he’d get a double pack of bamboozled jelly beans. He mentioned that we could all play a game that they created later. This weekend had been packed full of games so I agreed.

Later that day, it was time to play the game! He poured both packages of jelly beans in a bowl and explained a point system while mentioning a good jelly bean and a bad jelly bean. I thought to myself, “how can you tell the difference between a good jelly bean and a bad jelly bean?” Well, I was about to find out because I was first to go in the new game! He held the bowl so I couldn’t see which one I was selecting and I reached up and picked out a brown jelly bean. He said, “hold on a sec, okay, that one is either chocolate pudding or canned dog food.” WHAT!?!? They make jelly beans that taste like canned dog food? After some convincing, the kids finally got what they wanted. I popped the jelly bean in my mouth and started chewing. It took a few seconds but then I got the worst surprise my mouth has ever experienced. I freaked out and tried to swallow it partially chewed up. It didn’t go down very smoothly and I started to cough. With my eyes watering, coughing, and after a few gags I finally got the jelly bean all the way down. Needless to say, I did NOT finish playing that game.

That evening when I was speaking with a friend who owns a small business, he was telling me how he purchased a piece of equipment that looked exactly like the one that he normally buys but a different brand. The piece of equipment ended up failing and causing his business a lot trouble and loss of money. I told him that he got bamboozled! At first, he thought that I was making a joke about his serious situation but I explained why that was fresh on my mind. He agreed and we discussed how we can learn from the silly game that I played and apply that to business.

For small businesses trying to navigate the online marketing world it can be easy to get bamboozled. Heck, every person that has a Twitter account feels like they can manage a business’s social media. All of us have a family member that is in high school who has a class project to build a website… he can build my business website for free, right? Wrong.

There are plenty of simple aspects of online marketing, however there are a vast amount extremely complex components that actually make it count. Posting industry articles to social media every single day, that drive traffic to someone elses website is absolutely absurd.  Why are you driving traffic away from your website or brand? Why are you increasing their search engine optimization? Why are you utilizing a company to post information on your business social media that knows nothing about your specific brand and/or community and posts the same information on all of their clients? For example, not all independent pharmacies offer compounding services, not all offer vaccinations, not all offer diabetes education. Why would you allow a “pharmacy digital marketer” to post to your social media with blanketing information that has nothing to do with your service offering. What about when your local high school basketball team is headed to the playoffs, will that blanket “pharmacy digital marketer” post about that? Nope.

Our standard practice at In Their Face Marketing is to post pertinent industry information mixed with the personality of the business. We also post information that is important to the business owner and community. The entire idea behind posting is to create real value by educating, empowering, and entertaining. Your posts MUST include your business personality, your business tone, and personalized images.

I learned the hard way that just because it looks and feels like a normal jelly bean does not mean that it is a normal jelly bean.  I hope that you don’t have to learn the hard way that just because a company calls themselves a “digital marketer” does not mean that they are. Do not get bamboozled while selecting a company to manage your online marketing. Do your research and most importantly, make sure that your online/digital marketer is driving traffic and awareness to your business, not their own.

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If you want to see the Jelly Beans and their flavors, click here!