Nail by Nail

by Cindy Droog

A very successful singer is currently frequenting the radio waves with a song dedicated to the house she grew up in. One line that always stands out to me is how her father built the house – her mother’s dream home – “nail by nail and board by board.”

As the Advocacy Committee’s Social Media Taskforce kicks off, those lyrics are not far from the truth for us and for the WFDSA’s efforts to use this medium to help achieve its objectives.

We’ve already got the boards – the platforms in which we will engage being our Facebook page, Twitter feed, blog and newsletter. The nails that will hold them in place are our people and how they engage. Their speeches we can share; their activities to protect consumers that we can promote; and their thought leadership that we will spread. We even have a roof ready to go atop our structure. It’s the 2012-2013 goal of our social media activities: Use social technologies to help society understand and admire the direct selling industry.

But as one of my best friends, who is an interior designer, will tell you, and as the song quoted above alludes: It’s no good having the tangible items without the dream. As the chairwoman of this new taskforce, here are the components of my dream:

 

▪    That of the 90 million direct sellers around the world, one percent will be willing to share their story in a way that is company-agnostic in its benefits. I’m more of a wordsmith than a mathematician, but the power of 900,000 voices would be hard to ignore. Over time, this will chip away at the number of people who aren’t aware of our industry impact or hold negative perceptions based on outdated information.

 

▪    That the WFDSA Code of Ethics leaves the echo chamber of our industry and becomes part of a much wider conversation. Our code applies to many situations that impact the public, but we need to engage on their channels – not just ours – and make our positions known. Scanning social conversations and creating a process for what we respond to and who represents us is on our list of projects.

 

▪    That our presence in the world’s most popular social channels will provide a supportive medium to increase our industry’s and our association’s visibility with media outlets and influencers.

 

▪    Simply: that when I tell people that I work in the direct selling industry, their eyes light up. Their tone is positive. They want to know more. They give me – and you – the opportunity to provide a little on-the-spot education. That they’ll walk away inspired to learn more.

There is a lot more needed to bring the finishing touches to our “house” of social media, and we’ll talk about them in this newsletter over time. For now, let’s just say that it’s going to be a place that many will want to visit, and many, many more will want to stay. That when we add the items that bring both comfort and originality to our virtual spaces, everyone will know just how different our industry is, and how much it matters.

As the Social Media Taskforce strives to have WFDSA’s social media efforts mirror our amazing offline progress, we appreciate any input you have. Contact Cindy at any time: cynthia.droog@amway.com.