Fish where the fish are BITING

Fish where fish are biting (Photo: Humbug Fishing, Darwin, NT Fishing Charter)I had a great chat with Pete Davies on Mix104.9 in Darwin yesterday, about the use of Social Networking for business. (Actually, if Pete or Matt read this, it would be great to grab a copy of the interview for The RITE Series website)

What has stuck with me after our chat was his last comment about how ‘fishos’ are great fans of Facebook and forums in particular because if they are not out on the water they seem to love spending their time looking at pictures of other people out on the water, hauling in their catches.

It reminded me that I use a lot of fishing analogies in my marketing workshops at the Business Enterprise Centre when teaching business people about the smart way to use social media and social networking.

From a blogging point of view I talk about each blog post like it’s a craypot, bobbing around on the Google sea, doing its bit to attract some visitors.

We talk about link baiting, that is, producing material that is interesting and relevant to your audience and/or people who influence them, in the hope they share your content far and wide on your behalf via a link from their website or by sharing links to you website/article with their Facebook, LinkedIn or Twitter communities.

And then I made mention of using the term ‘fish where the fish are’ in relation to choosing WHICH social network is the one for your business, if any. But our interview had to end before I could really land the most important part – it is not just WHERE they are, it is where they are BITING. Let me explain.

Barramundi fishing and online marketing

Through the Get Online NT program, I met Lorna from Humbug Fishing. She and her husband Scott run fishing charters to hunt Barramundi and all kinds of fish in all kinds of water throughout the Northern Territory.

What I have learned, not being an angler myself, is that Scott has developed a bit of a name for himself because he’s ‘not afraid to take some paint off the boat to get to the best fishing spots he knows’.

I believe that is the crucial piece missing from all the failed attempts we see where businesses have thrown their lines into the sea of Social Networking sites, only to leave empty handed and become jaded by the ‘waste of time’.

What is happening here is that we all know Facebook has 11 million Australian members, making it a place ‘where the fish are’.

However, just like a river full of Barramundi, it is not enough for them to be there, they must be BITING.

So when we consider throwing our line into these places, we need to think deeply about our business, our customers, and whether our ‘bait’ (the content we might create on our Facebook Page, for example) is what our customers or prospects are in the zone for consuming when they are in Facebook, or on Twitter, etc.

Should Lorna be active in Facebook? Perhaps. If she can encourage her customers to share photos and stories there, then yes. But maybe it is more natural for them to go back to their favourite online fishing forum (of which there are many) and share their trophy pictures and stories among their existing networks of mates.

Happy fishing.


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