Last week, while home sick, I caught one of my favorite authors, John Grisham, on The Today Show. During the course of the interview, Matt Lauer asked the noted author about his Facebook page. John went on to say how he didn’t even know he had one. The folks at Doubleday must have created it, he didn’t even really know what “the Facebook was” and so on. Which made me curious, so I popped over to his page and found I wasn’t the only one surprised and disappointed that John was just another Phantom Facebooker.
Not that I’m surprised. From my sick bed I watched as Ellen, Hoda and Kathie Lee, the entire cast of The Today Show, and a few others talked about their Facebook pages. It seems having a Facebook page and talking about it on your daytime talk show is all the rage today. But none of them actually manage their pages. In fact, Ellen and Hoda/Kathie Lee go so far as to give the intern or assistant that actually manages the page camera time. Reminds me of the secretary that reads and prints out the CEO’s emails.
I visited several of their pages to see what, if any, communication was going on and as I suspected, none to speak of. Oh sure, their fans were communicating, leaving message after message to the stars and to each other. But other than some lame Hoda/Kathie Lee posts like this one
Posted by Kathie Lee and Hoda
there is no real dialogue, which is uplifting to me. Uplifting because it shows that even huge companies like Doubleday and NBC haven’t figured out Social Media.
Just imagine if John Grisham a) knew he had a Facebook page and b) actually got on the darn thing once and awhile to chat.
I’d guess he probably had about 15-20 minutes of Green Room time before he went out on the show, there was probably a bit of time in the makeup chair, etc. With a laptop or a smart phone, John could have been posting to his Facebook page, Twittering his morning, sending pics, or streaming behind the scenes video using QIK. The point is, he could have communicated with the 25,632 fans he has on Facebook or the countless others he could have on Twitter. Imagine the viral effect that would have had. Imagine the coffee pot and water cooler conversations that morning. Imagine how many more books he might have sold.
As the say in Twitterland – “Doublday Grisham marketing: FAIL.”
What do you think? If you were the social media consultant to these companies/stars, what would you tell them to do?