Recently I, Marie Fuzzell (not Ryan Pryor), was in the drive-thru with my 2-year-old at a local Chick-Fil-A and I noticed a sign that read “Mommy Valet.” I was intrigued, so I read on, and the sign explained that I could order my food through the drive-thru, then come into the restaurant and sit down to eat. What a genius idea!
If you’ve ever tried to order food for one or more hungry kids, you know what a great service this is for parents. Though I didn’t take advantage of the Mommy Valet during that visit, I know that if I need it, it’s there next time. And yes, this service, along with the other kid-friendly amenities Chick-Fil-A offers, will persuade me to pick Chick-Fil-A over other restaurants.
It also got me to thinking about other stores that I frequent—especially the grocery store—and how I wish more stores and restaurants would be so thoughtful and accommodating to parents. A lot of grocery stores boast senior days, but they should be catering to parents too! Simple things like samples, stickers, and offering to help take bags to the car would go a long way. It’s not all about the sales and good prices.
How did Chick-fil-a come up with the Mommy Valet service? Maybe they were paying attention to their customers’ conversations online, maybe a competitor had a similar service, or maybe their CMO is a mom and suggested it. Who knows! The point is, they listened, saw a need, and acted on what they learned.
This brings me to social media. So many companies are focused on what they can get out of their social media efforts, focused on their messaging. But what are you providing of value to your customers through social media? Take Chik-Fil-A in this example. They created value for their customers. They solved a problem. They communicated a very important message to one niche of their customer base: we care about the situation you’re in and we want to make your life easier. Please, let us help you.
How can you do the same through your social media platforms?
So how do you create value through social media marketing?
You need to listen, understand your customer, and then act in a way that solves a problem or enhances your customer’s experience. So much attention and talk on is on how to monitor social media—but monitoring isn’t listening or acting.
Don’t just monitor. Provide value.