Yes, we really mop the carpet around here.
Here at Starmen HQ we have industrial strength carpet covering the floors — for now. We plan to rip it out soon to liberate the hardwood underneath, but in the meantime, we gotta keep it clean. That means not just vacuuming, but also swabbing spots of it with a damp mop to remove all the bits of Hollywood Boulevard that get tracked in. (Those sidewalk stars need a bath!) Yes, we know it sounds crazy, but it works.
While we were laughing about it the other day, we decided to coin a new marketing term: "mopping the carpet." (Hey, if Seth Godin can come up with crazy marketing metaphors, so can we!)
In marketing, "mopping the carpet" means more than just maintaining order and paying attention to detail. Every professional agency does that (at least they should). Mopping the carpet means continuously evaluating your marketplace and your media while making critical adjustments along the way.
Mopping Up the Startup
For example, many startup companies will do a thorough market analysis before they launch. They'll conduct focus groups, check out the competition, and scope out trends, all of which they'll detail in their business plan.
That's all fantastic, but as soon as they get their funding, and they finally launch, the evaluation ends, and they turn their attention to getting product out one door, money in the other.
Sure, the founders know that the perfunctory website that they threw up (pun intended) needs a redesign, but that gets backburnered. A year goes by, and that perfunctory site has since cost them business because of architecture flaws, broken links, inadequate SEO, and incomplete or outdated content.
At the same time, their competitors have changed direction, the economy has shifted, and customer tastes have evolved. That startup is now paying the price for not continuously monitoring and adjusting. They need a serious mop up.
Mopping Up Social Media
On a tactical level, think about company Facebook pages. Many businesses are satisfied with simply building one, then posting an occasional announcement. They'll keep track of how many "likes" they get, but they don't monitor what people are posting on their page, or how their page manager is responding.
Consequently, we see a lot of great companies with Facebook pages that are covered in spam. Even worse, we see post after post by frustrated customers still waiting for answers. Like a dirty carpet, an unkempt social media platform says a lot about a company.
Facebook pages in particular need to be continuously monitored and adjusted. Spammers and trolls must be edited out. Customer questions must be answered, not ignored.
Above all, a Facebook page helps you identify your most enthusiastic customers: the ones who regularly post, comment, and like. They should be rewarded and turned into evangelists for your brand. But if you're not constantly monitoring your Facebook page, and responding to them, they may lose enthusiasm. Indeed, you may never realize they exist. Opportunity lost!
We know the whole mopping metaphor might sound contrived or silly, but we bet you'll never forget to monitor your market and your media again… In the meantime, it looks like someone here tracked in a splash of Marilyn Monroe. Or is that Humphrey Bogart? Mop!