Ten Simple Truths I Found in Social Media
I’ve invested quite a lot of time in social media over the years, and particularly in the last nine months. Having presented a lot about Twitter in my own business I thought it would be hypocritical not to attempt to grow my only following. I did – this is my 70th blog post, I tweeted 4,000 times, and I’m on the cusp of getting 1,000 followers. That’s not much of a big deal, but it’s not bad in eight months since I didn’t have any external network to begin with – I’m just an inhouse digital marketer like thousands of others. Here’s what I learnt on the way:
1. If you invest your time heavily in social media the by product is that you spend a lot of your time being prevented from getting things done. It is the ultimate distractor.
2. When used effectively, social media provides fantastic support networks. However, rarely are the best networks open or public.
3. Social media is a weak substitute for real life relationships. However, it is effective in ice breaking and maintaining relationships.
4. Most of the debate in social media is futile; you will spend your time in round about arguments where not a lot can be clarified – I highly recommend staying away from any kind of debate on Twitter.
5. If you have a contentious point to make, reply less frequently to contentious replies – you’ll more than likely save time and energy.
6. Thanking people that did something good for you is always worth it. Don’t thank people who are looking for it.
7. For newcomers, social media is the best channel for being heard – SEO, TV, whatever media – I think social media wins because it can gain you traction with real people quicker than other methods.
8. Never start pursuing social media goals without something solid to say. Most often, what’s said is best outside social media.
9. Influence scoring is not as meaningless as it’s made out to be. Okay, what do the numbers really mean? But a number does give you something to improve on. In September last year, with no followers and no one knowing who I was, Klout score gave me some point of reference for how I was doing.
10. Ultimately forming networks will give you tremendous opportunity to exchange ideas and be given new opportunities. If you work in digital, investing your time in building networks is absolutely worth it.