We can't control the message anymore

I had an interesting conversation with an employee of a small garden center. She is thrilled by the use of new media. She wants to post pictures of events, special plants, and people at the nursery. She wants to create a community of people who love the garden center. In other words, “she get’s it.” She understands that the use of new media, and creating community is an important job at the garden center. Problem is the owners don’t think the same way. What if she says something they don’t agree with, or feel shouldn’t be posted. They are concerned about loosing control of the message.

Here is the issue. We can’t control the message anymore. Even if the owners keep her from doing social media for them, someone else will. Ever heard of Yelp? Yelp publishes reviews of businesses online. You can log on, and tell everyone what you think of a certain nursery, or garden center, or any business. The surprising thing with the nursery in question is they get favorable Yelp reviews. Over a dozen people have taken the time to rate the business, and say something positive. People are paying attention, and they are online.

To the lady working at the nursery, and anyone wanting to make a go of it in the garden business the answer is, get online. If the owners won’t let her do a blog or Facebook page for the nursery, then she should do one for herself. Start a blog about gardening in your area. Become the expert at gardening in your world, whatever size that world is. There is a place for people who have a passion for what they do, and are willing to lead. Create a group of loyal readers who trust you, and look forward to the next post or entry. Build your value as a trusted resource for the area, and your group. Who knows, maybe that will be the nucleus of a new garden business in town.