Readers, today I am excited because it is time to go on the offensive. I'm going to lay down a little background in the next three paragraphs but if you're eager to get fighting by all means skip ahead.
Buying American is absolutely essential to preserving our economy but there are not enough of us yet doing it. The papers still read like obituaries for the industry of our nation as they call out the death toll of our dead factories. Too many people are still indifferent and apathetic about the damage their choices are causing. Why is that?
The primary driver of consumer preferences is advertising. Over the decades advertisers have become skilled at hacking our psychology to make us want what they need us to want without asking too many questions. Until recently advertising was expensive and controlled by large corporate gatekeepers at newspapers, radio stations and TV networks. Mass advertising is effective but it also expensive and imprecise. That began to change with advent of the internet and shifted into overdrive as social media became a phenomenon.
When properly harnessed social media is an advertisers paradise for three reasons. First, conventional advertising is impersonal and customers are jaded from being subjected to ads constantly. However, when someone they know suggests or endorses a product it bypasses the usual skepticism for advertising because it is coming from a trusted source. A personal recommendation caries the weight of a hundred commercials and a thousand banner ads. Second, it is relatively inexpensive to run a website or create a Facebook page. Third, this technology uses information gathered by cookies, small programs that run in the back of our internet browsing software to record our online activity, in combination with complex algorithms to create advertising that accurately targets individual user tastes. This combination is extremely powerful, relatively new and those that master this medium will master the market.
Social media advertising is powerful , and like with most powerful things, that power can be used to destroy or create. At the moment, unfortunately social media is being used as a highly effective vehicle to push products made in China and the host of other nations unfairly undercutting US companies. The power they are using is not their own however - it is OURS because we ARE the social network. This makes them extremely vulnerable to attack by the same people to which they are trying to sell their products.
For example, a year ago I saw on Facebook a slick commercial for Dollar Shave Club and decided to check it out. They were indeed a little cheaper but of course I had to check - are they made in the USA? The answer is NO. Their website doesn't specify where just "Overseas." To make matters worse their ads are now disingenuously smearing their competition, much of which produces their razor blades in the United States ( Gillette produces theirs in Boston, MA, Edgewell produces theirs in Milford, Connecticut). Fuck. That. Noise. It's America, you can say what you want, but you'd better be prepared to catch hell from the likes of us.
I am calling on all my readers to go on Facebook and find Dollar Shave Club. They are an enemy of the American worker but “like” their page anyway, because in this game the friend of my enemy is my friend. Once you do so you can write on their page and post fun things like this:
Like I said, I'm sure we'll start getting banned from their page and that is why we need to bring as many people into this as possible, keeping a constant stream of exactly the kind of attention companies like DSC don't want. With your support we can make social media a place that the companies selling out this country will fear to tread.
** I forgot to mention this when I first wrote this post that I have no connection to any of the companies mentioned within it.