Rabu, September 12, 2012


The Uncontrollable, Uncomfortable Reality of Social Media

When I first started consulting clients on social media a number of years ago, most of the companies I encountered were new to the space. But that’s less often the case these days.

Now, most of the clients I work with have been down the social road before, usually with a large firm or agency guiding them. And they hit a roadblock on their journey that they were unable to move past. So, my job is to analyze this roadblock and to remove it.

More often than not, the roadblock is that the client was sold a social media strategy designed primarily to make them feel comfortable and in control at all times. One that assured them that…

  • If you upload a spreadsheet of posts to HootSuite and syndicate it to all your social platforms, you will be successful.
  • If you blog about topics using these three optimized keyword terms and post on Tuesdays and Wednesdays, you will be successful.
  • If you build a network with influencers with Klout scores above 50, you will be successful.

But nothing in social media is that simple. Mostly because much of your success in social media is dependent upon you (or a team of yous at a company). Not your tools. Not your content calendar. Not your network. YOU.

You are not supposed to be comfortable and in control in social media at all times. If you are, it’s a good bet that you’re not actually being social.

Social media is about engaging in conversations. And, in actual conversations, you are not in control of both sides of the engagement, confidently directing each exchange to the conclusion that serves you best.

Being social, whether it is online or off-line, is about give and take –  which is an uncomfortable proposition involving the unknown, the unpredictable and the uncontrollable.

But, no company wants to buy a messy proposition like that. They want to buy a simple formula for social success where you don’t have to think a whole lot and will get the most return for the least investment of time and resources.

Which leaves people like me in the same position as health coaches that are trying to sell weight loss based on the less-than-glamorous premise that to achieve it, you must actually exercise and eat less.

In order to achieve success in anything, you must move through discomfort. You can’t simply step around it.

But, this is a message none of us ever want to hear.

As Buddhist nun Pema Chödrön says, “what keeps us unhappy and stuck in a limited view of reality is our tendency to seek pleasure and avoid pain, to seek security and avoid groundlessness, to seek comfort and avoid discomfort.”

The first generation of companies who subscribed to this approach to social media are indeed finding themselves unhappy and stuck. They chose a path to take themselves somewhere, and seem surprised that that somewhere didn’t end up being amazing, productive, or profitable.

They stepped around their discomfort only to find it still waiting for them on the other side.

Written on August 29, 2012 by Jennifer Kane in Online Marketing, Thoughts on the Industry

10 ulasan:

  1. Jadi sendiri mahu nilai bagaimana dengan apa yang media sampaikan. Kerana kita tahu mana yang patut dipercayai dan yang tidak patut.

  2. kita perlu bijak menilai apa yang disiarkan oleh media.

  3. akur saja la, semakin maju tamadun dunia, semakin maju juga masalah2 yang dihadapi oleh dunia..

  4. Chief Minister Datuk Seri Musa Haji Aman wants the Sabah Barisan Nasional (BN) Youth to gear up their social media machinery in preparation for the upcoming general election.

  5. “This is because social media has become the best medium for them to interact especially with the younger generation and to know the people’s needs and aspirations,” he said in his speech delivered by Deputy Chief Minister, Datuk Yahya Hussin at the closing of the Cyber Troopers Workshop organised by the Sabah BN Youth.

  6. The three-day workshop at Likas near here was participated by 85 youths including those from Umno. It teaches participants ways to coordinate and update new media units in BN.

  7. Participants also get a better understanding of new media applications such as facebook, Twitter, Youtube, blogs and propaganda techniques.

  8. Yahya, Sabah Umno secretary, also launched the Sabah Umno Youth’s New Media Unit facebook page at the event.

  9. Musa, who is also the Sabah BN chairman, further suggested that Cyber Troopers collaborate with government agencies including the Sabah Institute for Development Studies (IDS) to obtain accurate information, to be disseminated to the people.

  10. Meanwhile, Sabah BN Youth chief Awang Kadin Tang urged members to remain positive against onslaughts by the opposition.