Maximize your Social in the Age of Influence: Neal Schaffer

Maximize your Social in the Age of Influence: Neal Schaffer


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About Neal Schaffer

Neal Schaffer is a leading authority on helping businesses through their digital transformation of sales and marketing through consulting, training, and helping enterprises large and small develop and execute on social media marketing strategy, influencer marketing, and social selling initiatives. Fluent in Japanese and Mandarin Chinese, Neal is a popular social media speaker and has been invited to speak about digital media on four continents in a dozen countries.

He is also the author of 3 books on social media, including Maximize Your Social, and in February, 2020 will publish his 4th book, The Age of Influence – The Power of Influencers to Elevate Your Brand, on educating the market on the why and how every business should leverage the potential of influencer marketing.

Follow Neal Schaffer on LinkedIn
Follow Neal Schaffer on Twitter@nealschaffer

Pre-order “The Age of Influence

Follow Worthix on LinkedIn
Follow Worthix on Twitter: @worthix

Follow Mary Drumond on LinkedIn
Follow Mary Drumond on Twitter@drumondmary


Introduction: (00:05) Neal Schaffer is a leading authority on the digital transformation of sales and marketing through consulting, training, and helping enterprises, large and small, develop and execute on social media marketing strategy, influencer marketing, and social selling initiatives. Neal is the author of three books on social media, including Maximize Your Social, and in February 2020, will publish his fourth book, the Age of Influence: The Power of Influencers to Elevate Your Brand, focused on educating the market on why and how every business should leverage the potential of influencer marketing.

Mary Drumond: (01:16) Hi, Neal.

Neal Schaffer: (01:17) Hey, how’s it going?

MD: (01:19) How’s it going with you? Thank you so much for being on here today.

NS: (01:21) Oh, it’s an honor. I appreciate your invitation and I’m excited to have the conversation.

MD: (01:26) So for the benefit of our listeners, I always have our guests kind of introduce themselves and talk a little bit about what they do. But can you also add part of what you feel your big mission is and why you’ve chosen to follow down this path?

NS: (01:39) Yeah. You know, I think over time I realized, and perhaps it’s because my father was an elementary school teacher who started his own publishing company, that I feel as if I’m an educator. And in fact, when I made the strategic decision almost a decade ago to launch a company revolving around helping businesses with social media, I realized that what businesses needed was not an agency to do social on their behalf, but more of a consultancy that would help them with strategy and with training. And it’s really education. So since then, I think everything I’ve done, whether it’s writing books or working with clients or speaking, I actually teach social media to executives at a few universities around the world. So that’s it. It’s all about the education and that’s why podcasts like this really excite me because I know that they’re a growing medium and that a lot of businesses, a lot of professionals listen and it really helps them with their business. So this is right along my mission.

MD: (02:30) Awesome. Well you’re kind of a world traveler as well. You speak Japanese, you spent a lot of time in Japan and other countries in Asia, right?

NS: (02:37) Yeah. You know, I lived in Japan for 15 years after I graduated from university. So that has influenced my perspectives on business. My wife being Japanese and having, you know, Japanese family is one reason I go back there often. But I also, because I do speak the language, I have a unique ability to help Japanese companies with their overseas digital marketing. So I do go back quarterly, but I also teach in Ireland every year. You know, I’m going to be speaking in Sweden at the end of August. A lot of opportunity finds me and I love to travel and I love to meet and mingle and learn from other cultures. So it’s a win win.

MD: (03:12) In your homepage, there’s an intro video where you talk about how you feel that this is your way of helping companies connect with social media and their consumers and their customers all over the world. It’s kind of your way of contributing to world peace in a sense.

NS: (03:27) Absolutely.

MD: (03:28) And how do you feel you do that? How do you feel like you’re bringing that around?

NS: (03:33) Well, there’s a few different ways to look at this, right? But I think what it comes down to, if people have access and know about the best product or the best service for them, it’s going to lead to efficiencies, right? It’s going to lead to them obviously being able to have happier lives, maybe having more economical lives or more efficient and more productive lives, more beautiful lives. But I think that also just the globalization of economy and culture, when you bring people together, you know, most companies I work with, even within the United States, we are extremely multicultural and when you work globally you are going to work with people from different cultures. And I think expanding global business, which I like doing with my clients obviously through digital marketing, that’s how you bring about world peace because you hear rhetoric between countries, but then when you meet people from the country and you have a normal conversation, you realize the rhetorics are only at a certain level, you realize that people are on a whole different level. And every time I as an American am overseas, I am representing Americans, right? I’m representing how others are going to perceive Americans. And the analogy is, consumers will control brand perceptions based on what they think of the brand. As much as brands invest so much money in brand equity, it really comes down to the user and how they experience their interaction with that brand. Right? And I’m sure you’re passionate about the subject, but the analogy is right there. It’s a very, very similar thing that at the end of the day, people are in charge of how they view the world. It’s not politicians telling them, it’s that people have memories, they remember things that happened to them in their lives, of dealing with people from other cultures, of historical incidents. I am not a customer experience expert by any means. I leave it to people like you to help businesses with that. But I was recently at a digital marketing, I’d say an industry meeting, and I can’t really give details because it was confidential, but when there was a global survey of CMOs around the world, different industries, and when they were asked, what is the number one topic that is top of mind for you that you want to strategically deal with over the next few years, customer experience was the number one thing, beating out anything else. So it is a topic that I know is really important. I have my own perspectives on it from my own social media perspective and I’m really excited to get the conversation started with you so that hopefully we can help a lot of businesses out. That’s sort of my angle and it’s really natural that what I see, it touches upon customers. I mean social media, that’s the ultimate interaction that a lot of customers will have the brands and if brands don’t get it right, it might lead to a negative perception. And I think that’s not good for anybody.

MD: (06:12) Absolutely. So on another video, I think it was a keynote that you were giving, I heard you say that social media platforms are made for people to engage with other people. So brands are kind of invading that people space. They are the odd ones out. So when companies are on social media, it’s weird. It’s kind of like things are out of place. So what is the best way to leverage these platforms whilst respecting this dynamic of people interacting with people and still make it as successful communication channel?

NS: (06:47) Exactly. And this really gets into the heart of the matter. So I have my own podcast, and I recently recorded an episode which I called Social Media Marketing 2.0 I alluded to the fact that I’ve been doing this for a decade, right? And I see marketers just doing the same old thing and making the same old mistakes. And it’s like, you know what, that things have changed, right? And I think it’s time for a paradigm shift in how we look at social media, how brands and how marketers look at social media. And this is influenced, pun intended, by my own book that I’m writing called The Age of Influence. Which is all about influencer marketing. And I’ve written a few books. My first book was about LinkedIn and about the concept of online professional networking and of meeting people professionally, virtually, even if you’ve never met them in person, and I think that that’s part of our mainstream culture now. The second book I wrote was more B2B focused because my background is more on the B2B side, but it was about using LinkedIn for sales and social media marketing, talking about social selling literally eight years ago, before the term even existed. My third book was about social media strategies, social media ROI. That was the number one question I got asked when I spoke, and this is, you know, six, seven years ago. Well over the last year or two, the number one question I get asked, unfortunately it’s not customer experience unless I was talking to CMOs probably, but it was all about influence and not just leveraging influencers for brands, but also marketers saying, I want to become more influential. So I took it upon myself to start doing interviews, doing research, and together with my own experience as an influencer and working with brands to put together this book. And what I’ve realized is we’ve already seen hints of this, of things like Disneyland, of Ritz Carlton, of these iconic brands that are saying, you know what, for Instagram, we’re not going to publish our own content. We’re just going to leverage user generated content. We’re going to let the voice of our fans be our voice. And it goes even further. Now, this is the first instance I’ve heard, but lush UK, the UK branch of the cosmetics brand, recently announced that they were just going to stop doing organic social and paid social altogether.

MD: (08:49) Altogether. I saw that.

NS: (08:50) Altogether, yeah. So, and these are two significant things and I think that because brands are invading the territories of people, their posts just tend to look like advertisements. And marketers just really suck at social media marketing is the conclusion I’ve come to. Well, there are some good ones out there, don’t get me wrong. But it’s hard to align that brand with the needs of people, it’s hard to compete with the user generated content that’s out there, as Disneyland alluded to several years ago. So, you come a point where it’s like, why create your own content for social media when you can be collaborating with others? So instead of looking at social media as a marketing platform, you look at it as a collaboration platform. And I think once you do that, it really unleashes huge potential for brands to probably get a hell of a lot more word of mouth and also do it without any paid social budget whatsoever. So it’s funny, I speak at Social Media Marketing World every year, and this year they had I think like a special track for a day on like Facebook ads. And when I look at Facebook ads, that’s not social media, that’s paid media. I mean it’s, it’s Google AdWords, right? You would get different demographics, sort of targeting and stuff because you have access to more user profiles and information on Facebook, but yeah, it’s paid media. So it leads me to question, what should be the role that brands have in social media? And it’s something that I throw at all my clients. What is the role? What do users want for you in social media? For instance, I wear a night guard and the night guard that I wear because I sort of grind my teeth and stuff, getting a little personal here, but I want to give you this example, right?

MD: (10:29) Same. I do the same. Have a night guard, too. We’re good

NS: (10:31) Okay so it uses a special type of material, which requires a special type of cleansing tablet. I cannot use over the counter stuff. I have to use the one the manufacturer created. Now this may be rubbish, I don’t know, but there’s good reasons why. So all of a sudden they started saying you can buy these tabs and they recommend using them daily, but my dentist is like, weekly is fine. So they recommend you buy them from their website. And they also had them on sale on Amazon. Then a few months ago they said, you know, we’re just going to do it all on Amazon, and now it has been out of stock for like a few months. So finally I went to their Facebook page. I did a search for them on the internet. The second result after the website was their Facebook page, I go to their Facebook page and I send them a message. I didn’t like them. I have no reason to like them, right, or to like receive communication from them. Right. And they did reach out to me within 24 hours. They responded and they said, Hey, it was a mix up at Amazon. Be on the lookout for it soon. I’m going to hold them accountable if it’s not on there soon because Amazon says something differently. But this is what it comes down to. When customers are frustrated and they are heavy social media users, at some point they probably interacted with brands on social media, not because they love those brands, although there are a small number of people that do, they reached out to them because they had a problem or they had a question. Customer service. And I know that there are a lot of customer experience people, professionals that come from that customer service angle, right? But obviously it’s more than just customer service because how you deal with that customer is going to affect their brand perception. So this is only one part of it, but I do believe that is a central role, that is probably the most important role that social media can play for brands. Yes, marketing can play a huge role, but not in the way of using these social media platforms as another advertising and broadcasting platform. If you want to be effective, you gotta be different.

NS: (12:51) People are really good at creating content. Influencers, and because I’m writing this book on influencer marketing, I’m obviously prejudice and biased, but they really make better content than brands can. Brands are always under the gun. You’ve got to reach your KPIs, you have your budget, you have executives that might not understand what the heck you’re doing. You have other divisions that are making ads for magazines like, Oh, just use those in social media. They don’t work. So there’s a lot of organizational reasons why this happens. It’s also why startups that spend a majority of their marketing on influencer marketing and they’re beating the big brands. I mean, at a smaller scale, but they get it, right? So, you know, in addition to the shift, there’s a huge shift in demographics. I mean, over the last decade, millennials are now the majority in the workforce. You know, gen Z is not creating Facebook profiles. We have just a whole different digital native generation out there that’s now a majority. They use online technology very, very different than we do. They expect different things from brands and they have different relationships with brands. And I think this trend towards customer experience and customer experience marketing becoming a mainstream topic as it should, is really at the perfect time, where it’s time for changes. It’s like my son’s elementary school, I’m on their PTA board, right? I coach the soccer team and they’re like Neal, can you help us with our social media, our website? I’m like, sure. So I created a new website for them from Wix and the old website they had was done like 15 years ago. It’s like people engage differently with the internet now, right? They’re used to scrolling differently. They’re just used to interacting. And my daughter is working with Assisteens, which is part of the assistance league. And I’m going to train her how to change their website. And I had the same conversation with them last night. It’s 10 years old, right? At a certain time you have to reengage in terms of technology and with people and you have to understand the way they use it is very, very different than it was when you first created your website for a lot of these companies. So also, you probably have a lot you want to say as well. I don’t want this to be one way conversation.

MD: (14:52) No, it’s great. I mean, you’re the expert. You know, you’re the reason that this is, this is about you and what you have to offer company. So it’s great.

NS: (14:59) No, you know, I’m just a straight shooter and am I making any money by saying this or generating demand? No. But this is truly the way I see it. And I think that companies need to get back to being really, really creative with the way that we look at social and understand, obviously customer experience is much broader than just social media. But it can be a very, very crucial touchpoint. And I just want brands out there saying, we’re here to help. We’re here to listen. And if someone mentions the brand, reach out to them. And we’re now at a period in Instagram, especially, of not just micro-influencers, but nano-influences. If you have 500 followers, you’re talking about the brand, why would you ignore them? Twitter is a different beast and on Twitter, and Instagram as well, you have a lot of anonymity, but there’s the stat that what 90% of tweets that mention brands are never responded to. Respond, right?

MD: (15:56) Right.

NS: (15:57) That’s, that’s where you build true relationships. That’s where, if there’s going to be any word of mouth, and this is the original intent of social media marketing. It was word of mouth. Hey, we posted on our Facebook page back in the day, 10% of our fans see it and all we need is a few of those fans to you know, like it or engage with us and then it goes to friends of fans that becomes viral. And obviously those days of virality with organic social media are pretty much over, right? You know, Instagram, LinkedIn to some point, you get more engagement. But if the whole idea of social media marketing is inciting word of mouth marketing, let others do the talking for you. And I’m not just talking about customers and fans, I’m also talking about, in a B2B perspective, partners, followers of any brand. But I’m also talking about employees. I consider when you treat employees as potential nano influencers and when you have a conversation that leads to collaboration, not hey, authorize yourself to our platforms that you can share our great advertisements. It’s all about that mindset, right? And about doing a reset on how we look at things like social media, marketing, influencer marketing, employee advocacy, and now’s the time to do it. I think the companies that do it now, we’re going to be a great advantage because most companies are just still way behind.

MD:  (17:07) You know, it’s interesting because that got me thinking about how just a couple of years ago, the way that companies talked to their consumers was through ads on TV. And that I’ve had guests on the show talk about how, I think it was Dan Gingiss, our mutual acquaintance, talk about how this is the most interactive way for companies to talk to their customers because the customers talk back. And that’s not something that happened before when you had just basic TV adverts or billboards on the streets. Customers couldn’t engage back. Whereas now on social media they can, but I find that companies keep trying. It’s either the companies or the media or I don’t know what weird conspiracy theory, but somehow or another, it always seems like they’re trying to standardize the way that companies communicate with customers. And it seems like customers are always trying to go rogue and find some new way, some kind of original way that that’s not all square and artificial. You know, I think that people want authentic interactions and the things that do go viral are completely authentic and you can’t really control that. And the problem is when companies do try to control that and they try to force virality, it doesn’t really work because it looks staged. And if there’s anything we truly know about these new generations is that they hate artificial, staged stunts. I have no tolerance for it. I feel insulted. I was thinking the other day about, okay, I’m going to get sidetracked here really quick, but you know when you’re talking, even on social media or wherever it is, it’s never a brand talking to another brand and B2B or a brand speaking to a person, it’s always a person communicating with a person. And sometimes companies I feel get a little bit carried away with that idea and they say, I’m going to create a personalized experience for my users so that they feel they’re communicating with another person. So if you call the customer service, it’s trying to pretend like the recording is talking to you. Like, Hey, how are you? I got you. Here, let me type in your information really quick. And you hear like clacking buttons in the back. Has this ever happened to you before?

NS: (19:13) Yes.

MD: (19:14) And I feel super insulted by it.

NS: (19:17) You know, I blogged a few times about, how does your customer experience translate on social, and there’s just, the other part is the gaps, especially in larger organizations. So you know, Klout, when it was around, had these Klout Perks and Virgin Air was releasing a new LA to Toronto flight. And I was chosen to go on the flight. So you know, I get the information from the Klout Perk, but then when I call customer service to book the ticket, they’ve never heard of it, right? They’re like, what are you talking about? And it’s these gaps that really, you know, customers do not like being on the phone more than a minute. When you have to be on the phone 30 minutes to resolve something, that is really bad. I’m sure it’s a KPI that customer service people follow, but that is just horr– I’m like, what is going on here? Either your customer service people do not have the authority, they’re not properly trained or there’s just lack of communication within the organization at a massive scale. So that’s what really frustrates me. And that’s where, yeah, I agree. You have a personalized experience. There’s another one that happened really recently. I think I retweeted, it was someone that was doing a Twitter chat and I retweeted their tweet because I think my name was mentioned and it turns out there was a sponsor for that Twitter chat. And so the sponsor was a car rental company and they direct message me. “Hey, thanks for engaging with us in that Twitter chat. We’d love to give you some free bonus points. Send us your reward number.” I’m like, well, that’s cool because I actually do use that rental car company. So I then respond back to the DM with my rental car number and then I get a response, Hey, this is so-and-so from customer service. How can I help you? It’s like, dude, what happened to the conversation? Those are the things that that work against, when companies really want to humanize their engagement, it has to be across the board.

MD: (21:07) Yeah, you’re right. That happens with bots, right? That’s happened to me before where I was upset at a company for something that happened. It was probably a big telco company. And I tweeted at them and when they responded I was like, Oh cool. They care. And I had that great warm and fuzzy feeling until I realized I was talking to a bot. And then I was just like, ehh.

NS: (21:34) Well here’s the other one, right? I had a problem with a major telco company and I threw it out and they responded and they actually resolved the issue really quickly. So okay, do you want all your social media users to just go to DM you for help going forward? Is that, are you saying that you want to have positive bias towards social media users versus all the other people who don’t use social media? It raises some really, really interesting questions actually about the digital divide and you know, the value of different customers. And do we treat everyone equally or do we give special benefit just because someone has X number of followers, it leads to an entirely different discussion.

MD: (22:09) Yeah, no, but I think you’re right. If I’m piecing together what you said earlier on in the conversation and now at this moment, which is companies understanding what their purpose is on social media, I think. So in other words, don’t try to be Wendy’s if you’re Clorox. You know, don’t try to be cheeky and cute. Just understand why people would want you to be there in the first place and do that really well. Is that it?

NS: (22:36) Yeah. And I just want to say same about the whole Wendy’s thing. So I was at another conference and they were talking about how engaging brands are on Twitter. And every single case study was a brand talking to another brand. It’s the echo chamber, right? It’s brands reading blog posts about other brands doing this. They’re replicating them. You know, Wendy’s is having a fight with Arby’s, who’s having a fight with McDonalds. I don’t know, but it just stupid. It’s not engaging with people. Anyway, but yeah. What is your purpose? At some point when you have a new communication channel, you think about, well, how are we going to use facts? How are we going to use even chatbots as part of what we do as a company? And obviously in the early days in social media, it actually was PR running the show, not marketing. And it was really for, you know, generating positive Goodwill, what have you. And at some point marketing took over and it really came into this ruthless battle for ROI, which I feel partly responsible for. And I do tell companies they should achieve ROI if they’re investing money in it, but I think it can be achieved even greater working with other people, collaborating with other people than doing it all yourself, is my point. So what is that role going to be? In fact over social media, what is the role going to be for your company on a Twitter, on a Facebook, on an Instagram, on a Snapchat, if that’s relevant. What is it going to be? And I think this is something that companies really don’t ask, but I was listening to a podcast today of a startup and they’re like, Facebook, we use it as a landing page for all of our events. We also do use it for paid ads to build our community because we’re a startup. Instagram is all about the crustaceans. YouTube is all about educational videos. They have it down. A lot of big brands I don’t think have that strategy down. Not social media in general, but platform by platform, community by community.

MD: (24:49) I was complaining about bots a couple seconds ago, but when I’m thinking about it now, the reason that I was maybe disappointed that I was talking to a bot isn’t because I dislike interaction with bots, as weird and kind of dystopian is that might sound. It’s just that I thought I was talking to human and then realize later that it wasn’t a human at all. But you have certain brands that are taking advantage of technology, and one that comes to mind is Lemonade insurance. And Lemonade does everything with bots, and by using bots they get things done quicker, it’s cheaper, there are a lot of benefits, but they’re very straight forward from your very first interaction that it will be bots processing your request, et cetera, et cetera. I think that it’s all about the expectations and you were talking about gaps a couple minutes ago and maybe that’s it. Just be transparent and straightforward as to what your objective is, what you’re trying to accomplish, and make sure customers understand that really well so that they don’t create false expectations as to what they’re going to experience, right? Because that’s what customer experience is. It’s the way people feel about their interactions, not only what they feel, but it’s the memories they create. It’s their impressions. It’s all of these things. So when they’re talking to companies or they’re seeing an ad or a post by a company, this is all generating reactions in the customer. So you just have to make sure that whatever it is you’re doing, you’re being straightforward and transparent and that just actually hitting your target audience properly, right?

NS: (26:22) Absolutely. You’re absolutely right. It’s all about managing expectations, and it’s also about a brand promise in some ways. One of my early clients was a public utility and on the public utilities Twitter and Facebook was very clear. We are here nine to five to answer your questions. If it is urgent, if it is an emergency or after hours, please call this number, and it sets the expectation very clear.

MD: (26:44) It’s fair, right? It’s fair.

NS: (26:45) Exactly. And you know, I have a chat bot on my own website, And I consult my clients, I recommend they all have them because I do feel that it’s hard for customers to find information they may need. A lot of that is obviously customer support information, but I use a chat bot basically to help guide them. Like I know these are the top 10 questions that, when people go to my contact form, they ask. So I want to help navigate them. What is it you’re interested in finding? Let me help you find it. And if I can’t find it, Hey send me a message and I’ll be more than happy to help you find it. And that’s been extremely effective because people are not going to go to a contact form, especially if you’re, you know, a smaller business, they’re just going to X out, do a Google search to try to find the information somewhere else. So I do believe that that bot technology has pretty engaging use case scenarios. And I think that companies really, once again, what’s the objective for using it? How are you going to use it in a way that helps people, not just helps you?

MD: (27:38) Is this, is this part of what you do? You have a consulting part of your business. Is this what the mission is, trying to help companies understand perhaps what their role is in social media?

NS: (27:48) It is part of what I do. I mean when brands reach out to me, there’s a whole different types of levels that I work with companies on. For some companies, I call it the throw everything over the wall approach. I will literally, they’ll just put me in charge and say we want to reach these KPIs, and then my agency does that. There are also companies that just want me to help them with their strategy or revise their strategy. There are others who will hire me as an advisor, where I create monthly reports. On a monthly basis we have conversations about ongoing trends, what have you. So it is a variety of things, but every client that I’ve worked with in one of those aspects, you know we do talk about, well what are the channels that you’re going to use? Primarily social but not just social, and when we talk about the channels, what does your website look like? It comes down to a digital audit, and that’s where the chat bot comes in because 99% of business I don’t think are using them, but I know firsthand from businesses that do use them, they are very, very effective.

MD: (28:40) Would you say that all companies should be on social media?

NS: (28:44) Yes. If you have a customer and your customer’s on social media, you need to be where your customers are. It has to be an option. How strategic of a presence you have and what you do with that presence are two different things. But yes, you should have a presence. In fact, not having a presence in social media, to me, is a red flag. And I’m sure I haven’t looked at Lush UK, if they completely deleted their account, but I would hope they would have left up a landing page for their profile that says, Hey, we’ve decided strategically not to be on social media, but we’re going to answer all your questions in our forum here with a link. I would expect they would have kept that up there. I haven’t checked, but I do believe you should have a place holder and that you should at least tell your story there.

MD: (29:21) I’m still waiting for it to be a gag. Like, ah, got you. We’re still here.

NS: (29:28) Yeah, I know, three months later. Sorry, that was an intern. That was a mistake.

MD: (29:31) I don’t understand the logic. I’m kind of waiting for it to unfold. Maybe waiting for enough time to pass to try to understand their motivation, if they’re trying to make maybe a political statement, maybe a social statement. I don’t really understand. I feel like at least everyone that I interact with on a personal basis live in a digital world and not being able to find companies that we interact with on social media is rather counterproductive. At least I feel that way.

NS: (29:59) It’s a red flag. If they had said we’re going to completely stop publishing our own content and we’re going to completely stop publishing a pain for ads, we’re going to do 100% user generated content from our fans that we love, that would’ve been my approach.

MD: (30:12) Sure. Like just re-publishing pictures of either reviews or customers using their products?

NS: (30:17) Yeah, exactly. Keep it real simple. I have a concept called social media growth hacking, right? I believe in sort of a zero sum approach to budgeting. It can be done very, very efficiently, very, very economically. And guess what? By doing it and seeing, by understanding brand perceptions of consumers on strategic visual networks like Instagram, you’re going to get lots of ideas for your products, for your own web design and what have you. I mean it’s really a critical component to learn from your customer. And when you can learn visually by seeing how different people use your product in different scenarios,I don’t know why you would want to ignore that. I’d want to celebrate that.

MD: (30:55) What do you think the number one mistake companies make on social media is?

NS: (31:00) Wow. I still think it is treating it as an advertising platform. And although they say they may not, when I look at content, I’m not convinced. Just in general. They’re trying too hard to become a person when it can’t be done. People look at the logo and they see.

MD: (31:21) Yeah.

NS: (31:21) So like I said, instead of trying to become a person, collaborate with people, but also just take a step back and try to figure out what it is you’re trying to achieve, what is the relationship that consumers want with you? But in general, it’s really still having the mindset, it’s less of a tactical mistake and more of a mindset that says we’re still treating social media primarily as an advertising, primarily as a broadcasting. We have an editorial calendar. We publish X pieces of content per week, per month, and they’re probably doing the same thing that they were doing five to 10 years ago, where you need to do something very, very differently now.

MD: (31:58) Well, I’m going to invite all of our listeners to to go onto Neal’s website. You have a blog, you have a podcast, you’ve got books. How else can we find you?

NS: (32:08) Well, I am NealSchaffer everywhere. There’s a few Schaffer’s out there. We are not related in any way, but they’re all, when you find a Schaffer, you know he’s going to be a great person. But yeah, that’s where I’m at. Even my podcast, called Maximize Your Social, I do believe that part of the title has my name, Neal Schaffer in it. So hopefully you’ll find that on iTunes or Spotify or wherever. And yeah, I look forward to continuing the conversation both with yourself and with your listeners.

MD: (32:34) Great. Wonderful. Thank you so much for being on today, Neal.

NS: (32:37) Thank you. It was my honor and I’m excited about the topic and hopefully those of you that are listening will move from just listening to actually having conversations internally and actually implementing what we’ve been talking about.

MD: (32:49) Awesome.

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Mary Drumond

Mary Drumond

Mary Drumond is Chief Marketing Officer at Worthix, the world's first cognitive dialogue technology, and host of the Voices of Customer Experience Podcast. Originally a passion project, the podcast runs weekly and features some of the most influential CX thought-leaders, practitioners and academia on challenges, development and the evolution of CX.



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Voices of CX Podcast

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