Bill Murtha had an excellent guest post article on Jay Baer's Convince & Convert called Secrets of Social Media You Learned in High School.
In it, Bill talks about the 5 things most of us learned in high school and how that translates into what we know today about social media and how you can get it to work for your company.
Here are Bill's 5 lessons with a bit of my own logic peppered in (feel free to travel over to Jay Baer's Convince & Convert read the entirety of Bill's post):
- Cliques and groups define you: Here Bill talks about the importance of knowing your audience, what they're thinking, and how you can connect to what's important and relevant to them. In the social media sphere, this adage is very true, as you have to feel genuinely connected to your audience in order for them to embrace you and your message and share it with their network.
- Word spreads fast (True or not): The bottom line here: Word spreads fast. I always like to tell people that Social Media is like the "Word of Mouth Marketing" of 30 years ago, only taken up a few 1000 notches with technology. Now, instead of being able to reach 4-5 people with your opinion in minutes, you can reach 200-1000 in a matter of seconds (and at times, in 140 characters or less). Online reputation companies are cropping up fast, but not faster than the speed that bad news travels (and stays) in the online world.
- Friends want to hang out with other friends: People like to hang around people that are like them. The great thing about social media is the ability to find a kindred spirit across the globe that has your same love of all things from Bono to embroidery.
- You can't be a friend without being a friend: Engagement is key here. In order to get "the social media world" to work for you, you have to work for it. I like to follow a 7-to-1 (them-to-me) promotion model on throughout my social media strategy. I find that by promoting others, and adding to the conversation, I also meet other like-minded people who are not just interested in what I have to say, but also the interesting things I've promoted from others that share our taste.
- You can try to belong to a bunch of groups (but you can only really belong to as many groups who allow you to join): I think this relates to engagement and being a friend as stated in #4. We all have a finite amount of time and resources, and as such, we should all be working to maximize those by engaging in activities that are worthwhile for us both personally and professionally. For this reason, it makes sense NOT to join EVERY group we come across that piques are interest, because ultimately we won't have the time devote the attention needed to nurture those relationships. You can try barging your way into many places, but the true testiment to your acceptance is your ability to be embraced by the members, and in social media, that means not just having a high number of friends, fans, followers, subscribers, and connections, but having a high rate of engagement, where you interact with your varied stakeholders and do all that's necessary to continue to faciliate your relationship.
Kindra Cotton, Small Business Survival Specialist