30 September 2008

Is your social media consultant...social?

There was a great post on Mashable yesterday about ways to know when you should fire your social media consultant. I agree very much with the points Alex raised, but would also like to add a few of my own to the list.

They swim mostly in the fishbowl.
What I mean by this: some so-called social media gurus love to spend a lot of their time backslapping each other about how great they are. (Note to these folks: spending the bulk of your time pimping your blog on Twitter while not taking the time to engage on any of the comments on said blog does not qualify you as a social media "expert"). A good adviser of ANY kind needs to be taking in a strategic spectrum of expertise across industries and disciplines - of course with a focus on their area of expertise - in order to advise their clients in the most informed manner. You simply can't do that if you only spend time with your own "kind".

Jason Falls cautioned social media professionals yesterday about spending too much time in the bubble, and it's great advice. Make sure your consultant has offline expertise and the ability to understand the bigger business picture.

They tout social media as the only strategy.
I could probably retire if I had a penny for each time I had to explain that social media is NOT a replacement for sound corporate communication strategy overall. It is not a shortcut. It is but one piece of a larger picture, and it is not necessarily the right approach for every company. Yes, community and relationships are valuable no matter what the industry, and I believe companies should strive to build lasting relationships with their customers. But social media requires an investment of time and resources, and not all the tools are suited to any given company.

If your consultant is insisting that creating a page on Facebook or an account on Twitter is the answer to all your marketing problems, don't walk away. RUN.

They don't practice what they preach.
This is a biggie with me. Is your consultant building a relationship with YOU? Do they respond to emails, engage readers on their blog, seem like a community is something they enjoy being a part of? Ask them why they do what they do. Talk to passionate and dedicated people like Mack Collier, Jason Falls, Connie Reece, Liz Strauss, or Geoff Livingston, and see how much the conversation truly matters to them. They're shining examples of what it means to walk the walk, and I learn from all of them, every day.

I can't speak for everyone else, but social media is a passion for me because I believe that relationships are the cornerstone of truly great businesses. How those relationships are cultivated is different for everyone, but you have to love the philosophy in order to apply it well. Social media is a powerful and dynamic set of tools, but the underlying premise of building stronger and more fruitful communities should be the undercurrent of why you're using them.




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16 comments:

Mack Collier said...

Thank you. For writing this post, and of course for mentioning me as someone that should be paid attention to. As you know, social media 'experts' not being social with these tools is a HUGE pet peeve of mine. I've seen it time and time again, as some people get a certain level of influence and start to be identified as a 'thought leader', many times they stop being social (which is what got them to the point of being influential), and start using the networks they have created on social sites to promote themselves. Interaction and conversation gives way to broadcasting.

And on a personal level, that's none of my business, these 'thought leaders' can do whatever they want. But the problem *I* have is when I have to work with clients that are offering up these people as examples of 'people that are social media authorities'. They see these 'experts' never replying to reader comments on their blogs, or never answering replies left to them on Twitter, and think they should use these 'social' tools in the same way.

Thankfully, we have people like you helping us keep our eyes on the ball.

ME Strauss said...

Thanks for including me.

But you know, you're one of the best in the bunch as far as I'm concerned. You give us a run for our money. So I nominate you to the list of names you're counting.

:)

Geoff_Livingston said...

F*ck being social. Be real.

Heh, heh,. couldn't resist. But that's the truth . You have to be you, not some faux social person. I think transparency is really about being that true essence of yourself.

Geoff

David Mullen said...

Amen!

Can't tell you how frustrating it is for someone like me, who is passionate about but relatively new to the space, to see the way some "gurus" work the system.

They talk about community and preach that giving is better than taking, but it seems like nothing more than lip service for some. Good luck getting those to respond to any genuine, thoughtful attempt at conversation. Unless, of course, you're another A-lister who can help push X% more people to their blog today.

Keep on keeping us all real, Amber.

Scott said...

"social media gurus love to spend a lot of their time backslapping each other about how great they are"

Too true. So many of them are Kool Aid drinkers who live in this vacuum where "social media" is all rainbows and unicorns.

If you're looking for an expert in social media, make sure that you find someone who knows how to communicate (and facilitate communication) in the real world too.

Amber Naslund said...

@Mack Thanks for your comments. I think we all have a collective responsibility to make sure the companies who really need to understand social media can see it from all angles and understand that it is not simply an old dog doing new tricks.

@Liz You are too kind, my friend. I'm so glad we get to share the same city.

@Geoff you make a really good point. And I'm all for being real, but that's exactly what I'm saying some folks *aren't* being. They're purporting the power of using social media to better connect people and companies, and they're doing precious little connecting at all. That seems backwards to me.

@David Thanks so much for weighing in. That's precisely what makes me nervous. We're ALL new at this to some extent, some of us just have more experience than others. I'd hate to think that the benchmark is some guy who hasn't left his blog in three years, or who hasn't done a lick of project work but for a handful of powerpoint presentations.

Ultimately, the real power in all of this social media is when it's treated as a legitimate, strategic communications strategy among and along side other things. Not instead of. And I think those that are claiming to be the teachers need to worry a bit less about how many Twitter followers they have and a bit more about how they're really getting companies to understand this new crop of tools.

Amber Naslund said...

@Scott Anyone who has been to one too many frat parties can tell you to stay FAR AWAY from the Kool Aid. ;)

David Mullen said...

I agree wholeheartedly. I wrote a post a few weeks ago called "Social Media Isn't the Second Coming" that was precisely on that: http://is.gd/1W97.

In short: Social media doesn't replace your strategic communications strategy. It may be a great complement to it as part of your overall marketing mix. But it ain't the savior alone to all business problems.

Here! Here!

Sonny Gill said...

Great post Amber.

Like Geoff said, it's just about you being you. It's up to you whether you're willing to do that while putting in the effort.

Mack - thank you for that comment. I was talking about that earlier today with David Mullen, who also commented, and the lack of these thought leaders' social skills. They preach conversation/community/etc. but they've gotten to a point (by hard work, no doubt - don't want to downplay their accomplishments) where they don't see the need and can just broadcast now.

To each their own, but I look forward to being a B-lister and reaching out to those newbie bloggers who want to connect with social media preachers.

Jack Hadley said...

Amber, thanks. Some great thinking. My background is in traditional marketing services and it has been interesting to start explaining to clients how a social media component can fit into their overall marketing strategy. As you know, we seem to be the early adopters--and we see the future value of a social media strategy. You post inspired some new thoughts for me. Thanks. -- Jack

James said...

I would say that you are right on all counts. Here is another one: Fire your Social Media Expert if they call themselves a "Social Media Expert". I mean honestly, has social media been around long enough to have "experts"? Most "experts" haven't contributed to best practices, they heavily weight strategy on one tool...normally Twitter... and tout it as being the pinnacle to success.
I'm interested in Social Media...am I an expert? Nope, I'm a student of Social Media...and so is everyone else at this point.

Connie Reece said...

I second Liz's motion that your name be included among those you listed as being passionate about connections and conversation as well as knowledgeable about social media. Liz has been a big influence on a lot of us, but she's a shining example of generosity. And kudos again to Chris Brogan for challenging us to "jump out of the fishbowl."

Over the weekend I had the opportunity to be with a lot of "regular" business people, most of whom don't know what the term "social media"means. It was a fun challenge for me to describe what I do in words and thoughts they could quickly grasp. My "elevator pitch," if you will, about social media is improving.

Beth Harte said...

Amber, you are spot on. Thank you for developing this topic out further. Alex's post hit home for me because he is well-known in the industry and VERY real. Alex practices what he preaches and has built a great community in Philly. He gives as much (if not more) as he gets and having a 15 minute chat with him fills your brain for a month...and I can say the exact same for you.

Social media only works when you are real [thanks Geoff for stating it so succinctly ;)] and you talk with your community.

Unfortunately, as more people get involved with social media, we are bound to see more people using the tools for traditional broadcasting and calling it social media. I really hope I am wrong...

Thanks Amber.

Gavin Heaton said...

I know exactly where you are coming from!

And while I know I shouldn't, I AM always surprised when I see comments like -- "I blogged about this the other day, see xxx". If you ARE social, BE social.

Amber Naslund said...

@David I'm so glad we connected, and look forward to more conversation!

@Sonny I can't imagine doing it any other way than authentically, actually. Otherwise I'd feel like the proverbial snake oil salesman. This stuff transforms companies, but the posers will be found out, mark my words.

@Jack I'm so glad I could help spur a few thoughts, and wish you the best as you integrate social media into your plans. Keep it up!

@James amen to that. While I think some people have more experience and knowledge, it's a big world out there and pretty dang hard to be an expert at all of it. But I'm hopeful that those that are spending a great deal of their time learning are also spending it teaching and being a sherpa for those who need a little guidance.

@Connie It's SO great to hear that you're talking to business people about social media, and I'm doing more of the same myself. Getting out of social media is the very best way to teach others, and bring them in. And thank you for the kind, kind compliment. I hope I do it justice.

@Beth I hope you're wrong too but it's the nature of anything. There will always be spammers on email, site scrapers, and snake oil salesman in marketing. We can only hope that enough of us continue to fight the good fight and focus on the positive possibilities of social media. And I'm so, so glad you're among them. :)

Amber Naslund said...

@Gavin - Thanks so much! I'm surprised by those comments too, but we're not going to stop seeing them. And strangely, I never mind them from the people i've had great conversations with. Kinda like I might not mind getting a sales pitch from a company I know and love. Hmm. Go figure. :)

30 September 2008

Is your social media consultant...social?

There was a great post on Mashable yesterday about ways to know when you should fire your social media consultant. I agree very much with the points Alex raised, but would also like to add a few of my own to the list.

They swim mostly in the fishbowl.
What I mean by this: some so-called social media gurus love to spend a lot of their time backslapping each other about how great they are. (Note to these folks: spending the bulk of your time pimping your blog on Twitter while not taking the time to engage on any of the comments on said blog does not qualify you as a social media "expert"). A good adviser of ANY kind needs to be taking in a strategic spectrum of expertise across industries and disciplines - of course with a focus on their area of expertise - in order to advise their clients in the most informed manner. You simply can't do that if you only spend time with your own "kind".

Jason Falls cautioned social media professionals yesterday about spending too much time in the bubble, and it's great advice. Make sure your consultant has offline expertise and the ability to understand the bigger business picture.

They tout social media as the only strategy.
I could probably retire if I had a penny for each time I had to explain that social media is NOT a replacement for sound corporate communication strategy overall. It is not a shortcut. It is but one piece of a larger picture, and it is not necessarily the right approach for every company. Yes, community and relationships are valuable no matter what the industry, and I believe companies should strive to build lasting relationships with their customers. But social media requires an investment of time and resources, and not all the tools are suited to any given company.

If your consultant is insisting that creating a page on Facebook or an account on Twitter is the answer to all your marketing problems, don't walk away. RUN.

They don't practice what they preach.
This is a biggie with me. Is your consultant building a relationship with YOU? Do they respond to emails, engage readers on their blog, seem like a community is something they enjoy being a part of? Ask them why they do what they do. Talk to passionate and dedicated people like Mack Collier, Jason Falls, Connie Reece, Liz Strauss, or Geoff Livingston, and see how much the conversation truly matters to them. They're shining examples of what it means to walk the walk, and I learn from all of them, every day.

I can't speak for everyone else, but social media is a passion for me because I believe that relationships are the cornerstone of truly great businesses. How those relationships are cultivated is different for everyone, but you have to love the philosophy in order to apply it well. Social media is a powerful and dynamic set of tools, but the underlying premise of building stronger and more fruitful communities should be the undercurrent of why you're using them.




Reblog this post [with Zemanta]

16 comments:

Mack Collier said...

Thank you. For writing this post, and of course for mentioning me as someone that should be paid attention to. As you know, social media 'experts' not being social with these tools is a HUGE pet peeve of mine. I've seen it time and time again, as some people get a certain level of influence and start to be identified as a 'thought leader', many times they stop being social (which is what got them to the point of being influential), and start using the networks they have created on social sites to promote themselves. Interaction and conversation gives way to broadcasting.

And on a personal level, that's none of my business, these 'thought leaders' can do whatever they want. But the problem *I* have is when I have to work with clients that are offering up these people as examples of 'people that are social media authorities'. They see these 'experts' never replying to reader comments on their blogs, or never answering replies left to them on Twitter, and think they should use these 'social' tools in the same way.

Thankfully, we have people like you helping us keep our eyes on the ball.

ME Strauss said...

Thanks for including me.

But you know, you're one of the best in the bunch as far as I'm concerned. You give us a run for our money. So I nominate you to the list of names you're counting.

:)

Geoff_Livingston said...

F*ck being social. Be real.

Heh, heh,. couldn't resist. But that's the truth . You have to be you, not some faux social person. I think transparency is really about being that true essence of yourself.

Geoff

David Mullen said...

Amen!

Can't tell you how frustrating it is for someone like me, who is passionate about but relatively new to the space, to see the way some "gurus" work the system.

They talk about community and preach that giving is better than taking, but it seems like nothing more than lip service for some. Good luck getting those to respond to any genuine, thoughtful attempt at conversation. Unless, of course, you're another A-lister who can help push X% more people to their blog today.

Keep on keeping us all real, Amber.

Scott said...

"social media gurus love to spend a lot of their time backslapping each other about how great they are"

Too true. So many of them are Kool Aid drinkers who live in this vacuum where "social media" is all rainbows and unicorns.

If you're looking for an expert in social media, make sure that you find someone who knows how to communicate (and facilitate communication) in the real world too.

Amber Naslund said...

@Mack Thanks for your comments. I think we all have a collective responsibility to make sure the companies who really need to understand social media can see it from all angles and understand that it is not simply an old dog doing new tricks.

@Liz You are too kind, my friend. I'm so glad we get to share the same city.

@Geoff you make a really good point. And I'm all for being real, but that's exactly what I'm saying some folks *aren't* being. They're purporting the power of using social media to better connect people and companies, and they're doing precious little connecting at all. That seems backwards to me.

@David Thanks so much for weighing in. That's precisely what makes me nervous. We're ALL new at this to some extent, some of us just have more experience than others. I'd hate to think that the benchmark is some guy who hasn't left his blog in three years, or who hasn't done a lick of project work but for a handful of powerpoint presentations.

Ultimately, the real power in all of this social media is when it's treated as a legitimate, strategic communications strategy among and along side other things. Not instead of. And I think those that are claiming to be the teachers need to worry a bit less about how many Twitter followers they have and a bit more about how they're really getting companies to understand this new crop of tools.

Amber Naslund said...

@Scott Anyone who has been to one too many frat parties can tell you to stay FAR AWAY from the Kool Aid. ;)

David Mullen said...

I agree wholeheartedly. I wrote a post a few weeks ago called "Social Media Isn't the Second Coming" that was precisely on that: http://is.gd/1W97.

In short: Social media doesn't replace your strategic communications strategy. It may be a great complement to it as part of your overall marketing mix. But it ain't the savior alone to all business problems.

Here! Here!

Sonny Gill said...

Great post Amber.

Like Geoff said, it's just about you being you. It's up to you whether you're willing to do that while putting in the effort.

Mack - thank you for that comment. I was talking about that earlier today with David Mullen, who also commented, and the lack of these thought leaders' social skills. They preach conversation/community/etc. but they've gotten to a point (by hard work, no doubt - don't want to downplay their accomplishments) where they don't see the need and can just broadcast now.

To each their own, but I look forward to being a B-lister and reaching out to those newbie bloggers who want to connect with social media preachers.

Jack Hadley said...

Amber, thanks. Some great thinking. My background is in traditional marketing services and it has been interesting to start explaining to clients how a social media component can fit into their overall marketing strategy. As you know, we seem to be the early adopters--and we see the future value of a social media strategy. You post inspired some new thoughts for me. Thanks. -- Jack

James said...

I would say that you are right on all counts. Here is another one: Fire your Social Media Expert if they call themselves a "Social Media Expert". I mean honestly, has social media been around long enough to have "experts"? Most "experts" haven't contributed to best practices, they heavily weight strategy on one tool...normally Twitter... and tout it as being the pinnacle to success.
I'm interested in Social Media...am I an expert? Nope, I'm a student of Social Media...and so is everyone else at this point.

Connie Reece said...

I second Liz's motion that your name be included among those you listed as being passionate about connections and conversation as well as knowledgeable about social media. Liz has been a big influence on a lot of us, but she's a shining example of generosity. And kudos again to Chris Brogan for challenging us to "jump out of the fishbowl."

Over the weekend I had the opportunity to be with a lot of "regular" business people, most of whom don't know what the term "social media"means. It was a fun challenge for me to describe what I do in words and thoughts they could quickly grasp. My "elevator pitch," if you will, about social media is improving.

Beth Harte said...

Amber, you are spot on. Thank you for developing this topic out further. Alex's post hit home for me because he is well-known in the industry and VERY real. Alex practices what he preaches and has built a great community in Philly. He gives as much (if not more) as he gets and having a 15 minute chat with him fills your brain for a month...and I can say the exact same for you.

Social media only works when you are real [thanks Geoff for stating it so succinctly ;)] and you talk with your community.

Unfortunately, as more people get involved with social media, we are bound to see more people using the tools for traditional broadcasting and calling it social media. I really hope I am wrong...

Thanks Amber.

Gavin Heaton said...

I know exactly where you are coming from!

And while I know I shouldn't, I AM always surprised when I see comments like -- "I blogged about this the other day, see xxx". If you ARE social, BE social.

Amber Naslund said...

@David I'm so glad we connected, and look forward to more conversation!

@Sonny I can't imagine doing it any other way than authentically, actually. Otherwise I'd feel like the proverbial snake oil salesman. This stuff transforms companies, but the posers will be found out, mark my words.

@Jack I'm so glad I could help spur a few thoughts, and wish you the best as you integrate social media into your plans. Keep it up!

@James amen to that. While I think some people have more experience and knowledge, it's a big world out there and pretty dang hard to be an expert at all of it. But I'm hopeful that those that are spending a great deal of their time learning are also spending it teaching and being a sherpa for those who need a little guidance.

@Connie It's SO great to hear that you're talking to business people about social media, and I'm doing more of the same myself. Getting out of social media is the very best way to teach others, and bring them in. And thank you for the kind, kind compliment. I hope I do it justice.

@Beth I hope you're wrong too but it's the nature of anything. There will always be spammers on email, site scrapers, and snake oil salesman in marketing. We can only hope that enough of us continue to fight the good fight and focus on the positive possibilities of social media. And I'm so, so glad you're among them. :)

Amber Naslund said...

@Gavin - Thanks so much! I'm surprised by those comments too, but we're not going to stop seeing them. And strangely, I never mind them from the people i've had great conversations with. Kinda like I might not mind getting a sales pitch from a company I know and love. Hmm. Go figure. :)

30 September 2008

Is your social media consultant...social?

There was a great post on Mashable yesterday about ways to know when you should fire your social media consultant. I agree very much with the points Alex raised, but would also like to add a few of my own to the list.

They swim mostly in the fishbowl.
What I mean by this: some so-called social media gurus love to spend a lot of their time backslapping each other about how great they are. (Note to these folks: spending the bulk of your time pimping your blog on Twitter while not taking the time to engage on any of the comments on said blog does not qualify you as a social media "expert"). A good adviser of ANY kind needs to be taking in a strategic spectrum of expertise across industries and disciplines - of course with a focus on their area of expertise - in order to advise their clients in the most informed manner. You simply can't do that if you only spend time with your own "kind".

Jason Falls cautioned social media professionals yesterday about spending too much time in the bubble, and it's great advice. Make sure your consultant has offline expertise and the ability to understand the bigger business picture.

They tout social media as the only strategy.
I could probably retire if I had a penny for each time I had to explain that social media is NOT a replacement for sound corporate communication strategy overall. It is not a shortcut. It is but one piece of a larger picture, and it is not necessarily the right approach for every company. Yes, community and relationships are valuable no matter what the industry, and I believe companies should strive to build lasting relationships with their customers. But social media requires an investment of time and resources, and not all the tools are suited to any given company.

If your consultant is insisting that creating a page on Facebook or an account on Twitter is the answer to all your marketing problems, don't walk away. RUN.

They don't practice what they preach.
This is a biggie with me. Is your consultant building a relationship with YOU? Do they respond to emails, engage readers on their blog, seem like a community is something they enjoy being a part of? Ask them why they do what they do. Talk to passionate and dedicated people like Mack Collier, Jason Falls, Connie Reece, Liz Strauss, or Geoff Livingston, and see how much the conversation truly matters to them. They're shining examples of what it means to walk the walk, and I learn from all of them, every day.

I can't speak for everyone else, but social media is a passion for me because I believe that relationships are the cornerstone of truly great businesses. How those relationships are cultivated is different for everyone, but you have to love the philosophy in order to apply it well. Social media is a powerful and dynamic set of tools, but the underlying premise of building stronger and more fruitful communities should be the undercurrent of why you're using them.




Reblog this post [with Zemanta]

16 comments:

Mack Collier said...

Thank you. For writing this post, and of course for mentioning me as someone that should be paid attention to. As you know, social media 'experts' not being social with these tools is a HUGE pet peeve of mine. I've seen it time and time again, as some people get a certain level of influence and start to be identified as a 'thought leader', many times they stop being social (which is what got them to the point of being influential), and start using the networks they have created on social sites to promote themselves. Interaction and conversation gives way to broadcasting.

And on a personal level, that's none of my business, these 'thought leaders' can do whatever they want. But the problem *I* have is when I have to work with clients that are offering up these people as examples of 'people that are social media authorities'. They see these 'experts' never replying to reader comments on their blogs, or never answering replies left to them on Twitter, and think they should use these 'social' tools in the same way.

Thankfully, we have people like you helping us keep our eyes on the ball.

ME Strauss said...

Thanks for including me.

But you know, you're one of the best in the bunch as far as I'm concerned. You give us a run for our money. So I nominate you to the list of names you're counting.

:)

Geoff_Livingston said...

F*ck being social. Be real.

Heh, heh,. couldn't resist. But that's the truth . You have to be you, not some faux social person. I think transparency is really about being that true essence of yourself.

Geoff

David Mullen said...

Amen!

Can't tell you how frustrating it is for someone like me, who is passionate about but relatively new to the space, to see the way some "gurus" work the system.

They talk about community and preach that giving is better than taking, but it seems like nothing more than lip service for some. Good luck getting those to respond to any genuine, thoughtful attempt at conversation. Unless, of course, you're another A-lister who can help push X% more people to their blog today.

Keep on keeping us all real, Amber.

Scott said...

"social media gurus love to spend a lot of their time backslapping each other about how great they are"

Too true. So many of them are Kool Aid drinkers who live in this vacuum where "social media" is all rainbows and unicorns.

If you're looking for an expert in social media, make sure that you find someone who knows how to communicate (and facilitate communication) in the real world too.

Amber Naslund said...

@Mack Thanks for your comments. I think we all have a collective responsibility to make sure the companies who really need to understand social media can see it from all angles and understand that it is not simply an old dog doing new tricks.

@Liz You are too kind, my friend. I'm so glad we get to share the same city.

@Geoff you make a really good point. And I'm all for being real, but that's exactly what I'm saying some folks *aren't* being. They're purporting the power of using social media to better connect people and companies, and they're doing precious little connecting at all. That seems backwards to me.

@David Thanks so much for weighing in. That's precisely what makes me nervous. We're ALL new at this to some extent, some of us just have more experience than others. I'd hate to think that the benchmark is some guy who hasn't left his blog in three years, or who hasn't done a lick of project work but for a handful of powerpoint presentations.

Ultimately, the real power in all of this social media is when it's treated as a legitimate, strategic communications strategy among and along side other things. Not instead of. And I think those that are claiming to be the teachers need to worry a bit less about how many Twitter followers they have and a bit more about how they're really getting companies to understand this new crop of tools.

Amber Naslund said...

@Scott Anyone who has been to one too many frat parties can tell you to stay FAR AWAY from the Kool Aid. ;)

David Mullen said...

I agree wholeheartedly. I wrote a post a few weeks ago called "Social Media Isn't the Second Coming" that was precisely on that: http://is.gd/1W97.

In short: Social media doesn't replace your strategic communications strategy. It may be a great complement to it as part of your overall marketing mix. But it ain't the savior alone to all business problems.

Here! Here!

Sonny Gill said...

Great post Amber.

Like Geoff said, it's just about you being you. It's up to you whether you're willing to do that while putting in the effort.

Mack - thank you for that comment. I was talking about that earlier today with David Mullen, who also commented, and the lack of these thought leaders' social skills. They preach conversation/community/etc. but they've gotten to a point (by hard work, no doubt - don't want to downplay their accomplishments) where they don't see the need and can just broadcast now.

To each their own, but I look forward to being a B-lister and reaching out to those newbie bloggers who want to connect with social media preachers.

Jack Hadley said...

Amber, thanks. Some great thinking. My background is in traditional marketing services and it has been interesting to start explaining to clients how a social media component can fit into their overall marketing strategy. As you know, we seem to be the early adopters--and we see the future value of a social media strategy. You post inspired some new thoughts for me. Thanks. -- Jack

James said...

I would say that you are right on all counts. Here is another one: Fire your Social Media Expert if they call themselves a "Social Media Expert". I mean honestly, has social media been around long enough to have "experts"? Most "experts" haven't contributed to best practices, they heavily weight strategy on one tool...normally Twitter... and tout it as being the pinnacle to success.
I'm interested in Social Media...am I an expert? Nope, I'm a student of Social Media...and so is everyone else at this point.

Connie Reece said...

I second Liz's motion that your name be included among those you listed as being passionate about connections and conversation as well as knowledgeable about social media. Liz has been a big influence on a lot of us, but she's a shining example of generosity. And kudos again to Chris Brogan for challenging us to "jump out of the fishbowl."

Over the weekend I had the opportunity to be with a lot of "regular" business people, most of whom don't know what the term "social media"means. It was a fun challenge for me to describe what I do in words and thoughts they could quickly grasp. My "elevator pitch," if you will, about social media is improving.

Beth Harte said...

Amber, you are spot on. Thank you for developing this topic out further. Alex's post hit home for me because he is well-known in the industry and VERY real. Alex practices what he preaches and has built a great community in Philly. He gives as much (if not more) as he gets and having a 15 minute chat with him fills your brain for a month...and I can say the exact same for you.

Social media only works when you are real [thanks Geoff for stating it so succinctly ;)] and you talk with your community.

Unfortunately, as more people get involved with social media, we are bound to see more people using the tools for traditional broadcasting and calling it social media. I really hope I am wrong...

Thanks Amber.

Gavin Heaton said...

I know exactly where you are coming from!

And while I know I shouldn't, I AM always surprised when I see comments like -- "I blogged about this the other day, see xxx". If you ARE social, BE social.

Amber Naslund said...

@David I'm so glad we connected, and look forward to more conversation!

@Sonny I can't imagine doing it any other way than authentically, actually. Otherwise I'd feel like the proverbial snake oil salesman. This stuff transforms companies, but the posers will be found out, mark my words.

@Jack I'm so glad I could help spur a few thoughts, and wish you the best as you integrate social media into your plans. Keep it up!

@James amen to that. While I think some people have more experience and knowledge, it's a big world out there and pretty dang hard to be an expert at all of it. But I'm hopeful that those that are spending a great deal of their time learning are also spending it teaching and being a sherpa for those who need a little guidance.

@Connie It's SO great to hear that you're talking to business people about social media, and I'm doing more of the same myself. Getting out of social media is the very best way to teach others, and bring them in. And thank you for the kind, kind compliment. I hope I do it justice.

@Beth I hope you're wrong too but it's the nature of anything. There will always be spammers on email, site scrapers, and snake oil salesman in marketing. We can only hope that enough of us continue to fight the good fight and focus on the positive possibilities of social media. And I'm so, so glad you're among them. :)

Amber Naslund said...

@Gavin - Thanks so much! I'm surprised by those comments too, but we're not going to stop seeing them. And strangely, I never mind them from the people i've had great conversations with. Kinda like I might not mind getting a sales pitch from a company I know and love. Hmm. Go figure. :)