After he lost the 2012 presidential election, Governor Mitt Romney lost a staggering amount of Facebook followers. He shed so many fans that an entire website was established to chronicle his social media losses– the site features charts and a real-time loss counter. Mashable reported that on the Saturday after the election, Romney was losing 847 Facebook fans/friends per hour. Strictly speaking, Governor Romney is not a business in and of himself, but there’s something that business owners can take away from this—those people were fairweather followers. He didn’t win and they were done. They no longer wanted to read about him or engage with him because it was over. The trend ended.
As soon as Governor Romney lost, those fans jumped ship and abandoned him. He became irrelevant to those people almost immediately. As a business owner, webmaster or entrepreneur, you’re not in the election-winning game, you’re in the relevancy game. There are, however, some lessons to be taken from this whole thing. Some people will only follow your site or business through social media outlets when times are good, when it’s trendy or when they’re circling like vultures for cheap/free product. Those people are not valuable followers.
Let’s look at an example that’s a little more pertinent to the small business/web world than the Romney election machine’s loss.