Back in the beginning of March I wrote Build a Page and Profile for Absolutely Everything. It was about how I wouldn’t take no for an answer when it came to wanting my local 9Round gym to have its very own Facebook Page, Google+ Page, and Twitter Profile instead of sharing one profile on each social network across 4 or 5 separate gyms.
That just can’t work if your brand has separate locations that are open to the public. The public is funny. They don’t care passionately about Starbucks or McDonalds or Chick-fil-A or Target so much as they care deeply about their Starbucks, McDonalds, Chick-fil-A. My girlfriend has her Target. It’s the one off Route 1, the one Michelle Obama goes to.
Facebook is location-aware. Google is location-aware. Twitter is location-aware. FourSquare’s Swarm is hyper-local-location-aware. When I check-in to a gym, every day, and share my struggles I want people to know that it’s happening underneath the Giant and the Penrose Square Apartments.
Where it’s happening is as important to the increasingly location-aware internet as that it happened at all.
For me, I want the people in my online community to know that squeezed between the Hair Cuttery and Penrose Cleaners is my home away from home where I make an arse out of myself as many days as I can, for around 30-40-minutes-a-day, as often as I can. While I am sure that the Courthouse 9Round and the one on North Quincy Street and the one in Springfield are swell, but they’re not mine.
And I am not the only one who feels this way. People are loyal to their favorites. They’re loyal to the locations of the brands they frequent even more than they are to the brands themselves.
Ask folks about Starbucks, especially in someplace dense with Starbucks like downtown DC or NYC: people have their favorites. My girlfriend works in Crystal City, Arlington, VA, and there are three or four Starbucks right on Crystal Drive. You bet she has a list of her preferred Starbucks cafes in order or preference. And, she can tell you exactly why she does and doesn’t like each one, even though they really should be cookie-cutter versions of each other, held to the same standard of training and expectation.
When it comes to attracting and holding on to the fanbois and true believers and the people who do all the unpaid work from passion, love, dedication, or even personal interest, they’re not a guarantee. They’ll give and give and give — until they don’t.
When you find people who are willing and able to become volunteer workers, a street team enabled to paper all the cars in the neighborhood, you should do whatever it takes to cultivate and facilitate that relationship.
Now it’s your turn. Go git ’em Tiger!