Welcome to the W.L. May Company Blog.
Offering information and fun for the appliance repair industry and interested do-it-yourselfers since 2013.

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Phone: 1-800-377-8881
Email: Sales@WLMay.Com

Monday, March 31, 2014

Monday Motivation

“Be not afraid of growing slowly, be afraid only of standing still.”– Chinese proverb

For more from education and entertainment from W.L. May Company click...HERE

Friday, March 28, 2014

Friday Featured Client: Valley Oak Appliance

Team picture from Holiday Breakfast Award Ceremony.
Awards were named after the company mascot, "Miles The Dog"
Awards were given for working "MILES" above the competition.
Back row (L to R): Desi and Rafael
Front Row: (L to R): Lawrence, Eric, Mario, and Chris 
At W.L. May Company, we realize that without our clients we have nothing. In the spirit of celebrating that relationship, every month we feature one of the companies who allow us the privilege of helping address their parts needs. 

Name: Tim Hawkins

Company: Valley Oak Appliance

9710 Elk Grove Florin,
Elk Grove, California 95624
(916) 686-4690

Where did you grow up?  Elk Grove Ca 95624.

How Long have you been in the trade?
This is our family business and I have been involved with it for 24 years.  But active for 11 years.
Tim's dog and store mascot, Miles

What do you enjoy off work? 
I enjoy Bass fishing, golfing and taking care of our Koi pond.

What do you credit to your success? 
I credit my Family, employee's and my business coach Cami Mclaren.
The other thing is following the formula for success. 1. Clearly state your goal. 2. Have a end date for your goal. 3. Get accountability partners. 4. Take action daily. 5. On the projected date of completion close down.

What do you like about doing business with W.L.May Company?  
Well I love love love Brad and Kelly.  Todd and Glyn are OK as well.  

Seriously though, having W.L. May truly care about the success of our company.  What does that mean? When we have a idea on how we want parts shipped, packaged picked up, they are there to say what can we do.
Technician Alex holding baby Elli. Elli is Parts Guy Mario
and  Head Dispatcher Ashley's baby and Tim's God daughter
What can I share with others in the industry?
The biggest thing I have learned is truly truly treat your employees and customers as family.   For family business, or any business for that matter, find a way for your employees to be successful in business and in their personal life.  How can they go from renting a house to owning a house and living that dream?

Is there anything else you would like to say?  Thank you for the opportunity.

If you would like YOUR company profiled as a featured client send an email to: rob.m@wlmay.com

For more from education and entertainment from W.L. May Company click...HERE

Thursday, March 27, 2014

Throwback Thursday: News Recap March 27, 2014

If you have been reading the W.L. May Blog but haven't checked us out on FacebookTwitter or Google+, you may not be getting the whole story. We use all of those social media outlets to share news stories that relate to our industry as well as appliance tips we have found from other sources. Here is a recap of some of the top stories we have seen lately. A lot has been happening so without further ado:

We start with some consumer friendly articles we feel would be great for sharing:
  • Miami Herald had an article By Angie of Angies List discussing which is "greener" a new or a rebuilt appliance. LINK
  • Yahoo lifestyle offers 10 things to know about loading a dishwasher. LINK
  • Porch covers some tips for maintaining your washer and dryer. LINK
  • Fark highlights Seven creative uses for old dryer lint. LINK
  • The dry winter in California has many people thinking about water conservation. The Sacramento Bee examines dishwasher vs. hand washing water use. LINK
  • Heloise shares a tip about crayon stains on laundry. LINK
  • A British fashion blog tested washing "dry clean only" items in a home washing machine-you may be surprised at the results. LINK
  • Mason County Press shared this list of washer maintenance tips from State Farm Insurance. LINK
Next, we look at the manufacturers and how they have been in the news recently:
  • GE is working rapidly at implementing refrigerators that use Magnetocaloric heat transfer rather than a compressor based system. LINK
  • Just when you though it was ok to get rid of that avocado touch up paint, GE is bringing avocado back...maybe. Oh, and the old Westinghouse ad in the article is pretty groovy too! LINK
  • Electrolux has teamed up with designer Camille Styles for more ways to make laundry room makeovers more pleasant. LINK
We found several articles that might be of interest to those of you who love all thing appliances:
  • If you are a fan of Dr. Who, then this refrigerator decal kit to turn your refrigerator into  a Tardis, I mean a "police box", might make for a fun accessory. LINK
  • A supposed "repairman" claimed to be a "stock trader" when really he seems to be a "con man". LINK
  • 95.7 KEJZ posted that they have conclusively concluded that spoons should be loaded handle up in the silverware basket of your dishwasher. LINK
Sometimes, the links we post are related to technology, business or happenings on the internet:
  • SCORE made some timely suggestions for spring cleaning your business both physically and digitally. LINK
  • Web Pro News posted an interesting article about Yelp and allegations of extortion. LINK
We close with a  fun story:
  • Blogger notes how her large family uses more dishes than her dishwasher has the space for. Sounds like her machine needs at least some TLC, and maybe replacement with a unit with more capacity. LINK
For more from education and entertainment from W.L. May Company click...HERE

Wednesday, March 26, 2014

What Would You Like?

Whats on YOUR wish list? We would love to know.

Here at W.L. May Company, we have always made it our goal to have what you need on hand and ready to go before you need it. We uses many techniques to anticipate future needs such as factory recommendations, inventory monitoring and tracking, and in some ways the most important: client feedback.

Client feedback has been responsible for introducing us to several products through the years. In fact, some of our most popular accessory items were introduced to us by our clients either telling us about a product or asking for our help in locating a product.

W.L. May Company has made a commitment to helping to further the success of our clients. The most outwardly visible way of doing this is by participating in trade groups, such as United Servicer's Association. Another way to help further your success is by our concentrating on stock availability and accuracy of all details of our business from the initial research assistance, to making sure warranty credits are applied quickly to your account. It takes some time and effort. Much of it happens out of the sight of our clients, but we hope you notice the results.

On the subject of furthering our clients success, we know that it takes more than just parts for a service business to stay successful and grow. It takes good equipment, a good appearance, and more and more it takes computer expertise. Our position in the supply chain means that we are approached regularly with solution suggestions for all of those issues.

So we pose the question: "What would you like?" Are there aspects of your business that you are struggling with and would like some assistance or direction? Uniforms, trucks, software, tools? Let your parts expert know what you are struggling with and we will do our best to help address those needs.

Thanks to all of our clients for your help and support. We look forward to hearing your suggestions. Have a great servicing day out there!

Tuesday, March 25, 2014

Kelly's Korner - Sprucing up the laundry room

Hey, All,

I don't know about your laundry room but mine is in it's own little room with the hot water heater, an old bookcase, no window and VERY dark when the light is off lol.  It gets used a lot as a place to toss stuff I really don't want to deal with that second and then stuff piles up.

Well, thanks to my son's girlfriend, it is now cleaned of all the clutter and I've been thinking and looking for ideas to spruce up and brighten up that room.

While adding a small window is not feasible for me at this time, I think a coat of paint would really help.  Everything is white and, while bright, not a colour for me - thinking about a sunny yellow or maybe a cool aqua.  And either painting or restaining the cabinets above the washer and dryer.

see link at bottom of page
But for the washer and dryer themselves, they are the basic white appliances.  I found this blog and it has given me a few ideas:

And with all the amazing colours and prints on duct tape you could go really crazy playing with that.  Or you could find some wallpaper or contact paper you really like and cover the outsides with those.  I would recommend making a template before putting on the paper so you know where all the doodads go and it fits right the first time.

Want to change it down the road?  Pretty easy to strip off and clean any stickiness off with GooGone (part number GG44 and yes, we sell it).  Or, if you are really artistic, you could paint them with your favorite theme - flowers, bugs, stars and moons, flames, dragons, fairies or whatever your heart desires.

So if you're tired of the same-old go searching for some ideas on how to transform your laundry area - who knows?  It might make that chore a little more enjoyable.

Have a great week!

PS:  I found this site also and thought it hilarious although maybe a bit out there:

Monday, March 24, 2014

Monday Motivation

“Every sale has five basic obstacles: no need, no money, no hurry, no desire, no trust.” – Zig Ziglar

Friday, March 21, 2014

Friday Morning Videos: Westinghouse

Today we would like to share with you a very interesting documentary about George Westinghouse and the company he founded. It is a feature length video so it's not a quick view, but if you can comfortably watch a feature on your computer then you should find it interesting, with lots of anecdotes, old film clips and photos, not to mention some great old advertising. Enjoy!

For more from education and entertainment from W.L. May Company click...HERE

Thursday, March 20, 2014

Appliance Tweets: Laundry Detergent and Lint Screens

Looking through our Twitter feed, we found some appliance tweets to share with you.

We start out with the sort of frustration that we all feel when a favorite product is discontinued...

Maybe this Unknown twitter user is using a product you might like...

This detergent might even be a little TOO good...

When the wash is done, its time for the dryer. Power stream reminds us of a good way to save some energy and prevent fires...

PJ Shuping doesn't find cleaning the lint screen to be challenging.

Kameron Anderson, thinks it is so easy to clean the lint screen, that he would rather do that than his homework. Quit stalling Kameron, and get back to work!
Jim has some strong feelings about people who don't follow this advise...
Annie Kennedy isn't a monster...
Not sure if Amy Farley is a monster, but if she is, at least she is witty about it!
Of course, you could disregard our advise, and eventually have a broken dryer. If that happens make sure you hire a qualified technician or you could find yourself with a problem like this...

So what did Twitter teach us today? We learned that its no fun when they stop making your favorite laundry aid. We learned that there are some great smelling options in the way of laundry detergent to try, We learned to keep our lint screen cleaned in our dryer. We learned that people have strong feelings about cleaning the lint screen, and we learned that if we neglect maintaining our appliances, things can snowball into even bigger problems. Thanks for learning with us, and we sincerely hope you find your own useful information the next time you check your Twitter account.

Wednesday, March 19, 2014

Wednesday W.L.May Profile: Roger Forbish

This is the part of the blog where we share a little about ourselves. Today we would like to introduce you to one of the people that help provide you with our famously fast and accurate customer service.

Name? Roger Forbish

Job Title? My business card reads: Operations Supervisor

Where did you grow up? I was raised in SE Portland, I don’t think I ever grew up.

How long have you been with W.L. May? 19 years 8 months and 5 days (on March 11, 2014), or 20 years in July.

What did you do prior to joining W.L. May? I, I can’t remember. I washed dishes at the Hollywood café for 3 years, and then I got married and then I washed dishes at Reed College for 1 month and then I worked at the Organ Grinder for 1 day then I started here (oh yeah and I’m still married).

What do you enjoy doing when you're not at work? I enjoy not getting done the things that I know need to get done, like home improvements and mowing the lawn, pretty much anything that will distract me from that, I will play music and read books and watch tv and jog and paint and play video games as long as I am not doing what a responsible grown up should be doing.

To what do you credit your success? Adaptability to whatever situation presents itself.

What do you like about working at WL May? It’s my home away from home.

Can you share one piece of advice for others in our industry? When approaching a problem try to see it from as many points of view as possible and then choose the route that will do the most good for the most parties involved.

Is there anything else you like to say? San Dimas High School Football rules!

Tuesday, March 18, 2014

Kelly's Korner - The New Maytag Man

Hey, All,

I was watching TV the other night and saw a commercial for a Maytag dishwasher with a very familiar (at least to me and other Syfy station watchers) face!

Colin Ferguson has joined the ranks of one of the most iconic advertising characters for the latest round of Maytag commercials.  Colin, born and raised in Canada and now a naturalized US citizen, was the lead character, Sheriff Jack Carter, on the Syfy series Eureka.  If you are any kind of a comedic geek, this show was great and I was sad to see it cancelled.  Colin is also playing on the Syfy series Haven as a kind-of-funny bad guy.

I think the most familiar of these Maytag repairmen was actor Jesse White, who in 1967 became Maytag's "loneliest repairman" because of the dependability of the old Maytag appliances.  Mr White played the lonely repairman in 68 commercials from 1967 to 1989!  He was then replaced by Gordon Jump of WKRP in Cincinnati fame, followed by Hardy Rawls who only appeared in print advertising and personal appearances.  For a short time there was an apprentice repairman, played by Mark Devine.

In the newest round of commercials, Colin, in a total deadpan, plays a variety of Maytag appliances, extolling the virtues of these appliances. Plays an appliance, you say?  Catch these commercials on www.maytag.com and you'll see what I mean - they are hilarious!  And, just to say for me on a personal level, Colin, if  you want see how Maytag parts go out to you repairmen, come visit me anytime!  lol

Have a great week!

Friday, March 14, 2014

Fun Friday Appliance Trivia Challenge

So you think you know all about appliances? Here is a short set of trivia questions to test your knowledge.

1. Who manufactured the first Upright freezer?
2. There is a popular "universal" electronic defrost timer that is programmable. What is the part number?
3. What year did the first product with the Whirlpool name debut?
4. What appliance company was purchased and renamed by General Motors in 1918? Guardian Frigerato was renamed Frigidaire
5. What company was founded by Louis K. Jenn?
6. When was the last wringer washer produced by Maytag?
7. What product that W.L. May sells keeps electric cooktop burners from reaching an ignition temperature?
8. This GE oven was the first self-cleaning oven introduced into the marketplace. What was it known as ?

1. Amana
2. UET120
3. 1948
4. Guardian Frigerato was renamed Frigidaire
5. Jenn-Air
6. 1983
7. Safe-T-Elements
8. The P7

O-2 correct: You know a bit, but still have a lot to learn. Luckily you came to the right place.
2-4 correct: You know a fair amount about appliances. Keep visiting this blog to learn even more.
4-6 correct: You know a lot about appliances. Pass some of that knowledge on to someone.
6-8 correct You are an appliance star! Great job!

Thursday, March 13, 2014

Throwback Thursday: News Recap March 13, 2014

If you have been reading the W.L. May Blog but haven't checked us out on FacebookTwitter or Google+, you may not be getting the whole story. We use all of those social media outlets to share news stories that relate to our industry as well as appliance tips we have found from other sources. Here is a recap of some of the top stories we have seen lately. A lot has been happening so without further ado:

We start with some consumer friendly articles we feel would be great for sharing:
  • Lifehacker discussed household products you probably use too much of. LINK
  • Consumer Reports told us about a few refrigerator features that they consider to be "must haves". LINK
  • Charlotte Observer looked at some of the feature available on modern refrigerators. LINK
  • Good Housekeeping talked about microwaves and metals. LINK
Next, we look at the manufacturers and how they have been in the news recently:
  • The patent lawyers at IP Watchdog have some more Whirlpool patent applications to share with you. LINK
We found several articles that might be of interest to those of you who love all thing appliances:
  • The Splash shared the story behind the ban on phosphates in detergents. LINK
  • The Guardian visits the London Science Museum to look at household technologies of the past, what worked, what didn't and why the refrigerator hums. LINK
  • How to convert a chest freezer into a super efficient chest refrigerator. LINK
  • Beginning by servicing machines in apartment complexes, this Tuscon, AZ business specializes in restoring antique appliances. LINK
  • The Star Tribune explained the history of refrigeration and how it has changed our lives. LINK
Sometimes, the links we post are related to technology, business or happenings on the internet:
  • If you have the right washer motor sitting around, you could use it to make a generator. LINK
  • Computerworld talks about the "internet of things" and the obstacle of universal standards. LINK
  • More progress with Smart Appliances comes to from the UK. LINK
  • The World Wide Web celebrated its 25th birthday. LINK
We close with a few fun stories:
  • Sometimes in the rush of modern life we forget how good we have it. This article reminds us. LINK
  • This light hearted piece from Tri-City News argues against smart appliances. LINK
  • Columnists love to talk about their new appliances. We love to see people that are enthusiastic about their machines. LINK
For more from education and entertainment from W.L. May Company click...HERE

Wednesday, March 12, 2014

Web Tool Wednesday: Podcast Listening for Fun and Profit

A person who does field repairs can spend a lot of time behind the wheel. Some people use that time to make calls. Studies show that even using a hands free cell phone can impair your driving significantly. That alone means I wouldn't recommend using your drive time for phone business. Another option to fill that time is enjoying some radio programming. Music is a great way to take your mind off the tensions of traffic and the frustrations shared with you daily over the timing of the customers appliance break downs. Others use the radio to listen to news and talk shows. This is a great way to stay up to date with current events. However, some of these shows can be pretty emotionally charged, and you are probably not doing yourself any favors if you arrive at your next call infuriated over some political or cultural issue.

Image courtesy of Aniie Roi on Flickr
While I will use the car radio for music and news, I have also had great results using that time to increase my knowledge. I listen to podcasts. What is a podcast? A podcast is an episodic radio (or sometimes video-not for automotive use!) program that listeners can subscribe to in order to be advised of each new episode. If you use iTunes you are already a good chunk of the way to listening to podcasts already. Many podcasts can be found in the iTunes store. They are free and if you click on the subscribe button you will find new episodes synced to your player the next time that they are released. Another tool for listening to podcasts if, like me, you are not a iTunes user is with an app called Stitcher. The app isavailable on both Apple and Android and the offer a desktop web player as well. The site offers you a menu of literally thousands of programs that can be subscribed to and listened to in the player. I mention that I like the Stitcher app, That is not a paid endorsement in any way, I just like the app. There are plenty of other podcast programs and apps available if your preferences vary. Most podcasts can also be listened to by visiting the webpage of the podcast. Obviously, that method is not very compatible with listening to on the go.

As I said, I am an avid podcast listener and listen to several podcasts to try and learn more about social media marketing and the appliance industry. Not everything that is covered on these programs applies to our industry, but one of the beauties of a podcast is that I can fast forward past irrelevant stuff, or if you need to hear something again to understand it easy to rewind and replay. Also, podcasts can be saved for future reference if desired. Here are a few of my favorite podcasts to get you started. I am linking these to the websites associated with the program and from there you can generally find a link to subscribe.

  • The FixItNow Podcast is the most appliance oriented podcast I have heard. A product of the web famous Appliance Samurai, his  podcast is a technician talking to do-it-yourselfers about appliances and their repairs. Unfortunately, it looks like they have stopped producing new episodes lately, but there old episodes are full of interesting insights and useful tips. LINK
  • Beyond The Todo List is a program that speciallizes in productivity tips for business. A lot of the material applies to a computerized office setting, but some of it could be useful for anyone trying to squeeze a few more minutes into their work day. LINK
  • The Social Media Social Hour is a program intended for those of you who are pursuing a social media agenda for your business. The program discusses techniques and changes in the rapidly evolving world of social media (think Facebook, Twitter, blogging). Interviews from successful marketers in the social media field provide varied viewpoints and ideas that can be used in your own social media efforts. LINK
  • Inside Social Media is another program similar to Social Media Social Hour. Many weeks, if one of the two programs doesn't offer anything useful to me, the other program will. I monitor both of them so that I have choices as a listener. LINK
  • This Week In Tech is one of the oldest most well established podcasts out there. It deals with technology news in a panel format comprised of experts in technology creation and reporting. Sometimes the talk is inside baseball about Silicon Valley. Sometimes the tech being discussed can, quite honestly, be over my head. On the other hand, I have learned about a lot of websites, apps, and new products by listening to the program. The program is sort of the flagship for for the TWIT network of podcasts. While they are all tech oriented, several of them have a lot of useful info so if you like this whole podcast idea, you  might want to look at the other programs they offer as well. LINK

I'd suggest that if you have never tried listening to a podcast, you give it a try. If you have an interest in a subject, there is probably a podcast about it-its not just business and tech stuff out there. I personally also listen to hockey news, history, music and comedy. Give it a try, it's free and what do you have to lose? You might even be inspired to create your own podcast. It could be a great way to increase rapport as well as to reach out to potential new customers and seperate yourself from your competition. If you already have been bitten by the podcast bug and subscribe to some shows, I'd love to know some of your favorite programs. Let me know in the comment section. Have a great day out there and stay informed.

Tuesday, March 11, 2014

Kelly's Korner - Montgomery Wards

Hey, All,

I was helping my mom pack up some stuff in anticipation of her move and came across an old Montgomery Ward credit card with my name on it!  For many, this name is a blast from the past, but we here in the appliance business still hear it every day.

Just a bit of history gleaned from various sites on the internet:  Montgomery Ward was founded in 1872 by Aaron Montgomery Ward who wanted to provide people in rural areas with goods they couldn't get locally.  Sold through the catalogs he put out, people could buy farm machinery, household goods, appliances, clothes and many other things and pick them up at the train station or post office.  The retail stores started opening in 1926, and through many ups and downs over the years, was one of the leading retailers along with Sears and Macy's and others. 

Did you know that Rudolph, the Red-Nosed Reindeer was a creation by a Wards employee, Robert L. May (don't know if he was a relation to the founder of W. L. May) as a Christmas promotion in 1939?

In 1985 the company closed its catalog business after 113 years!  I well remember waiting in anticipation as a child for the Christmas "Wish Book" to come.  My sisters and I would pore over it for hours making our Christmas lists for Santa.

Then, with the advent of more and more retail stores like Walmart, Target, and Kmart, business was sinking fast and on December 8, 2000 Montgomery Ward announced that is was going out of business.  My mom had only worked for them for 13-14 years but she was there at the Mall 205 store right till the bitter end.

For us in the appliance business, Montgomery Ward is still an everyday name.  Wards had bought appliances from the leading manufacturers like Maytag, Frigidaire and others and put their name and own model numbers on them - just like Sears does - and we get calls from people whose machines are still running.  And, yes, we still can get many parts for these.

It is really bittersweet for us older folk who remember the stores and catalogs to have seen this business close and other businesses that have been around for decades - Nordstrom's and Radio Shack have announced they are closing a bunch of their stores.  Sad to see icons fall.

Anyway, we here at W L May are still going strong after 90+ years and hope to be here for at least another 90 more!

Have a great week!

Monday, March 10, 2014

Monday Motivation

The most fertile soil does not necessarily produce the most abundant harvest. It is the use we make of our faculties which renders them valuable. — Thomas W. Higginson

For more from education and entertainment from W.L. May Company click...HERE

Friday, March 7, 2014

Friday Morning Videos: Frigidaire Imperial Line 1956

Salesman training/demo video. Covers all of the new features being offered on the 1956 Imperial line from Frigidaire.

For more from education and entertainment from W.L. May Company click...HERE

Thursday, March 6, 2014

Little Known Facts About W.L. May And A Funny Story

A vintage image of the W.L. May storefront.
Here are a few little known facts about W.L. May Company...

  • W.L. May used to be located on the scenic Park Blocks of Downtown Portland.
  • At one time our main warehouse was a bakery for the Fred Meyer grocery chain. You can still see flour on some of the hard to reach rafters.
  • In 1923, W.L. May company started out as a small appliance repair company, parts sales came later.
  • W.L.May Parts experts have weekly training sessions to keep our skills up to date.
  • Hidden in our building is a bulkhead door like you might see on a submarine that accesses an underground stream.
  • The intersection of 11th and Madison, (the back side of our building) was home to the first asylum in Oregon- Some say there are still some crazy people at that intersection-crazy good parts experts!

Here is a funny story...

This story was told to me years ago by an old timer tech, who has long since retired, Ben in Cave Junction, OR.

Ben had gone out on a call for what was likely a problem with the defrost timer. When he arrived at the customers home he was taken aback by the filthy conditions, but went ahead with the job to satisfy his customers. He tore into the refrigerator and  got a look at the old timer. Now, some of you will recall the older defrost timers that had a little window that allowed you to see that the mechanism was advancing. As he looked into the window to see if it was advancing properly he saw that there was a cockroach that had gotten jammed into the works and was plainly visible through the little window.

It was right about then that the homeowner stepped into the kitchen and asked Ben if he had figured out the problem and could fix it. With a little bit of a chuckle, Ben replied, "Oh yes, I can fix this easily. Here is the problem. This piece is a little motor", he explained showing the timer to the customer, "see this little window here, if you look inside you can see that the engineer who drives it has died."

Its probably not a true story, but still pretty funny. What is the worst thing YOU have found on a service call? Tell us about in the comments. We hope you have a great day out there and don't come across any little 6-legged defrost timer engineers!

For more from education and entertainment from W.L. May Company click...HERE

Wednesday, March 5, 2014

Six Facebook Fallacies

Since I run the social media of W.L. May including Facebook, Twitter, and Google+, I have had conversations with a variety of people and have seen a variety of examples of Facebook usage. I also spend a lot of time and energy trying to keep current what the "internet gurus" recommend as best practices. In the course of all that, I have heard a few fallacies about using Facebook and today I would like to take a look at those with you.

1. Nobody cares what I had for lunch.

It amazes me that some folks STILL think this is all that social media is for. Oh sure, there is plenty of "food porn" out there if that is your thing, but Facebook is used for so many other kinds of messages. Facebook can be a tool to augment your advertising, increase your standing in the community, and develop a relationship with your clientele. It takes some work to be effective, but many service companies have seen some positive results.

2. Everything I post shows up on the timelines of those who have "liked" me.

This was a true statement when Facebook was a new service. As Facebook grew, people began to have trouble with too many posts on their page. To help weed through the clutter, Facebook created a math program that looks at the subject matter of the post, the types of media it contains and who posted it. They then compare that to how each person who "liked" you uses Facebook. How much the writer and reader interact, what kinds of materials (links, pictures, videos, etc) that the reader generally "likes" or "shares", and how old the post is. These things all affect what you see on your Facebook timeline, but more importantly, they affect what your followers see. The formula, known as "edgerank" is complicated, but if you use Facebook, it is worth trying to understand and work with it otherwise your posts might not be seen by as many people as you would like.

3. All you need to do is create a Facebook page.

Some businesses have managed to create a basic Facebook page, but they haven't used it. Sometimes they haven't even filled in their contact information and hours. That information can help you potential clients know more about your service, before calling you. It can also help them to know what phone number you can be reached at. Also, this is a great way to develop rapport with consumers in your area. That can lead to better profits for your business. My point, for social media to help your business you need to be participating regularly.

4. Facebook is a great place to discuss politics and to spread my faith.

This is one I see all too often. There is nothing wrong with having strong opinions on religion and politics. Most people who are paying attention to those things do. That is exactly why you should probably avoid those subjects in social media when you are representing your company. Don't be afraid to be yourself, you DO want to let your personality show through, one of the strengths of social media like Facebook is that it helps to put a human face on your business. Remember though, because politics and religion do have such strong opinions on all sides, you are running a good chance of driving potential clients away from you if they come from a different viewpoint. Stay out of the fray when you are representing your business.

5. If I post a lot of sale prices it will drive business to my door.

Some companies do a great job of setting up a page. They post regularly. Their posts, however, are a never ending litany of specials and sales prices. This works against them in 2 ways. It doesn't do anything to help develop rapport with the people in their community, which is the strength of using Facebook as a marketing tool. In addition, those types of post typically get fairly few "shares" or "likes" which moves the poster further down the edgerank ratings and limits the likelihood that future posts will be seen by their intended audience. Try, instead, to offer value to your customers by providing them with interesting and relevant posts.

6. If I buy some "likes" it will let me reach more people.

After using Facebook a while, you will notice that not everything you post reaches all of your intended readers. If you have been trying to figure out how to improve the number of contacts your posts reach you will likely start to look into how edgerank works. At that point, it might seem like a logical thing to try and get more people to "like" your page. That DOES help your edgerank rating IF the people who like your page are actually interacting with it. There are services out there that will, for a fee, get more people to "like" your page. The problem with this that they will get you a lot of disengaged followers that really wont help your cause. There is reason to believe that using the Facebook promoted post program suffers from the same drawback. The following video explains the problem better than I likely could.

The challenge as well as the beauty of Facebook and social media in general is that it is so new that the rule book is still being written. Because of that, you may have some great ideas for reaching out to your customers that we have not discussed. Good luck with your Facebook and social media plans, have fun and stay social!

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Tuesday, March 4, 2014

Kelly's Korner - Scrubbing Power!

Hey, All,

I was sitting here thinking about what I could put in here this week and then did the old head thump.  When customers need something little to add to their order to bring them over their shipping limit or are looking for something for customer gifts or advertising gimmicks, I always recommend this item because it is FAB-U- LOUS!!!!

What the heck am I talking about?  Well, it is a scrubbing sponge (STSPONGE) and it is only $.99!  This scrubbing sponge by Sterling's Products looks like it has metal scrubbies but it is not metal!  It is made out of polyester and polyurethane and comes in silver and gold and is anti-bacterial.  You can use it on your Teflon, stainless steel, glass cooktops, dishes, lawn furniture, wood cabinets, etc., and I use it on my black VW bug to get the sticky bug guts and road grime off and IT DOESN'T SCRATCH!  In fact, these are going home with me tonight.

I have one in my bathroom, a couple in the kitchen and a few for other stuff.  You can toss them in the dishwasher for cleaning and they last quite awhile.  And at $.99 each, you definately won't break the bank.  These also make a nice "gift" to leave in homes after a service call with your business card attached.  Also, if you have a parts counter, having a display at point-of-purchase makes some nice add-on sales.

So stop by and pick several up or have us toss some on your order - you won't be disappointed!

Have a great week!

Monday, March 3, 2014

Monday Motivation

"Knowledge speaks, but wisdom listens." - Jimi Hendrix

For more from education and entertainment from W.L. May Company click...HERE