I saw this sign recently and thought to myself, ‘Fair play to the publican for making an effort’.
The publican could just sit around and complain about the death of rural pubs and give out about the drink driving laws, politicians etc.
Instead he’s being proactive and fighting for every last customer. I don’t know if made the signs and hung them up himself. I don’t think it matters.
Now some would say that maybe he should set up a Facebook Fanpage, a Twitter account, video the bands and put them on YouTube (see update below), start a blog and all the rest of it.
For what? To become the expert on Country Music bands playing in Clonmore?
It wouldn’t matter how many followers or fans he had, the profile of a typical Eamon McCann fan from Tipperary does not have a Twitter account. The book they are most likely to be absorbed in, is a bingo book father than Facebook. So rather than waste time learning all about these new tools and using them to no avail he uses a simple, but effective marketing tool aimed at his prospective audience.
The simplicity of the design is pure brilliance. It answers all the important questions, who? what? where? when? The placement of the signs at junctions and entrances to surrounding towns and villages ensures that anyone in the area that would be interested in whatever country band is playing will know about it.
The fact that he’s not using Social Media also means that he can engage and connect with his customers when they are in his premises rather than having his head buried in a laptop or handheld device.
I’m not dismissing Social Media as an effective tool for business. God knows I use it enough myself. But it irks me when I read that it is the only way. It’s more about knowing your customer and going where they are.
A classic example of this is the complete absense of any Irish Google Ads when you search for ‘Farming Ireland’ or ‘Agriculture Ireland’. (When I mentioned this via Twitter, it was suggested, rather brazenly, that farmers didn’t have any money to buy anything that was advertised.) I can’t think of any other industry, big or small, where there isn’t some kind of bidding war over industry specific keywords.
I delved deeper into the ‘long tail’. Searches for ‘calf nuts’, ‘dairy milk substitute suckler calves’ ‘artificial insemination cattle sheep’ still yielded no results. Don’t even ask me where those terms came from. As The Breffmeister might say “They were in my brain waiting to come out”
Why wasn’t anyone targetting all the farmers in the country online? Maybe they just don’t go online. How do you target them? Go where they go. Newspapers, Magazines, TV, Radio, The Mart, The Ploughing Championships.
There’s a vast segment of the population who never have and never will go online let alone engage with Social Media. Don’t put all your eggs in the one basket, you reap what you sew, make hay while the sun shines (ok, no more). If you are succeeding in business through your online activity alone, keep it up.
But if you are finding it hard to get new customers and seem to have exhausted all online efforts, maybe it’s time you tried something new.
Since writing this I’ve come across a YouTube video with Finbar Dennehy playing in Clonmore (see below). It’s not by the publican himself but who knows, maybe it might start a trend.