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Social Media is not…Part II

As if having over 60 ideas, suggestions and observations of what “social media is not” was not enough, I now add an additional 25 responses from Linkedin and Twitter.

Social Media is Not

65. Your free answer generator if you run out of inspiration. After receiving this reply I responded that the person could do better than that and thus I received the following:

Social Media is not about individuals, it only is about its own gods and half gods. Since I am not a half god nor a god, it is quite obvious people would not know me. Social Media is also not definable since it is everything you want it to be and everything anyone else wants it to be. People who like to catch it in a few lines do not understand Social Media, since Social Media is more than some definitions and words alone it is a journey that never ends.

66. … A one way thing.

Be prepared for lots of criticism and people who have a lot of time and every motivation to make sure that what you are is accurate and true. If it is not… well we have all seen the examples.

Accept that any company/ product/ person that ventures into social media will be scrutinised and critisized.

While some shy away from social media for this reason exactly increasingly there is a realisation that abstaining is not a risk – free strategy. Getting out there and being honest might be scary but it certainly gains you a lot in terms of engagement and reputation.

67. … A substitute for a real social life.

68. …Doing much other than seriously turning everyone into a marketing expert to our global detriment.

When I mentioned that I would like to have him expound on this, and suggested perhaps he look at it differently, I received this heated response that diverts into a global political rant..

I’ll look at it as I please, thanks.

Anyone who tells me “you need to look at it like this” needs to look at, well, that kind of language and is a function of that culture.

The only reason I “need to look at it like this” is because your professional reputation depends upon the success of social networking. Otherwise what I said wouldn’t be such a threat to your well-being. None intended, but that’s what drives a statement like that.

True, social networking is not all bad, and they’re not all great either.

Where is all this communication getting us? It is a bourgeois pastime, a distraction from crippling debt, anti-intellectualism, fake dionesianism, and while on the surface, available to everyone for low-low rates, is yet another competition for time and energy towards things that really matter, like democracy and true personal freedom.

Our world is entering what appears to be an even greater period of vapid leadership than ever before. Why? Because MySpacers can’t see that Mr. Obama needs a team of 300 economic advisors. Bill Clinton could argumentatively engage that number in a blind-chess-tourney. All they see is a well-tailored marketing message.

Our present democratic contender is a direct result of the attitudes arising from social networking. He provides a message that is well tailored, yet inappropriate for our circumstance (he got prominence from unenlightened religious/political leader Oprah Winfrey, won the nomination on an anti-war platform, and having won it and being confronted with the economy, he’s got nothing. Nada. Zippo.)

We need a seriously deep, connected technocrat/intellectual to undo the ravages of this prior administration. This generation is going to continue to fail to see that all that glitters is not gold, and not all that’s being sold is worth buying. Unfortunately we’ll be worse off than with Hillary because they don’t know how to identify with what’s needed on a basis of principle over personality. And that’s the big, big problem.

At that point, I wished him well in his future endeavors!

69. The greatest thing since sliced bread, and it gets just as stale over the course of a few days. 🙂

70. The only internet marketing strategy.

71. An avenue to “push” your product.

72. A replacement for all marketing strategies and tools like ad, pr, print, tv, radio or other methods for a company.

73. Is not a replacement for good customer service or a good reliable product or product support.

74. Is not going to directly reflect $$ at the cash register in a short term– nor can it always be quantified in terms of dollars but actually name, brand, product recognition. Just as a tv ad might not reflect in significant sales, the social media should be dealt with in the same manner.

75. Is not static. It’s going to evolve so staying only on myspace.com isn’t the only place. There are other options that can employ social media within the context of the marketing strategy tools.

76. Is not just about the number of friends on whatever site you choose to be part of– you actually have to participate and you actually need to have a great product to deliver. It’s not just about the sizzle, you need to have the steak that goes with it. (as in show me the beef)

77. … Is _not_ a mass media

78.  … Something you can do in your spare time.

79. …Addictive

80. … Going to make you any money this year. Or next year. Or the year after that. Or the year after that, or the year after that, or even *gasp* the year after that — unless you’re kin to Rupert Murdoch.

81. …A goal in and of itself.

82. …new.

It’s something you and your organization are already doing, only without applying the “social media” tag to it. It’s using <insert platform here> to make it easier for people to reach each other.

The concept is ancient both from conceptual and technological aspects. What’s new is the shiny implementations popping up… and actual mainstream acceptance. It’s now officially cool to be connected.

83. …Owned by marketing, nor PR, nor advertising.

84. …A destination, it’s a tool.

85. … Accurate and qualitative enough to trust.

86. …Is not a solution to every communication or PR problem

87. …Is not just for kids

88. …Is not a replacement for developing a solid strategy and should not stand alone as a tactic

89. …Is not a new way of thinking, it’s a new way of doing.

As you can see, the perceptions sometimes do not mix with reality. I engaged in some really lively discussions on this topic and will cause me to create an interesting slide presentation on the subject. I’m amazed as well at how skewed and actually how misinformed some of the respondents were. You can also see, where some are completely fed up with even talking about social media anymore. Their loss I suppose. In the end, as I was telling someone earlier, in a few years, we might not even recognize the monolith that is social media as it evolves into iterations that we haven’t even thought of yet.

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The Deets

Marc Meyer is a Digital and Social Media Strategist at DRMG. This is my personal blog where I share observations, thoughts and opinions that are all my own.

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