Field of Dreams is one of the best baseball movies of all time. The gist is that Ray Kinsella, as played by Kevin Costner, hears a voice telling him to build a baseball diamond in the middle of an Iowa cornfield. In the end, thousands of cars are lined up to see the field of dreams.
As the above picture shows, the San Francisco Giants are depending on a bit more than disembodied voices to get their fans to interact via social media. On the scoreboard they are promoting their Facebook, Twitter and Foursquare accounts. Do you think many of the thousands of fans in the stands are interacting via their smart phones? I’m sure the Giants are counting on that.
It continually amazes me to see brands and non-profits ignore their external marketing platforms as a way to promote their social media. Unlike Ray Kinsella, building it does not guarantee they will come.
Here in DC, the number one radio station is WTOP. They have been at the leading edge of the social media curve – especially in their industry – for quite some time. They have multiple Twitter accounts and a very active Facebook page. Yet, until recently, they made little – if any – mention of social media on their own airwaves. This from a radio station that boasts over one million listeners every week.
A couple of months ago they had around 4500 ‘likers’. Not bad but a very small percentage of their customer base.
Recently, they began running a clever promotional campaign using the old Sally Field Oscar acceptance line. Today, their fan count is over 11,000.
One of the driving forces behind social media involvement is passion. You are drawn to ideas and brands that evoke emotions. Baseball certainly has a passionate following. Radio does, as well.
What about heating and air conditioning?
CroppMetcalfe is an HVAC company in DC that advertises regularly on the radio. To date, they are the only radio advertiser to consistently promote their Facebook page in their ads – extolling special offers and timely tips.
They have 222 fans. You can look at this two ways. One, it’s a small number for so much effort. Two, there are 222 people who are passionate enough about HVAC to actually click on the page. Either way, for minimal effort and cost CroppMetcalfe is attempting to build their social audience.
The key line in Field of Dreams was ‘If you build it, he will come.’ So, on faith alone, Ray Kinsella plowed up a perfectly good corn field. And it worked.
Are you willing to leave the building of your social field of dreams to chance?
Social Media Specialist