Friday, June 19, 2009

Twitter does not make you cool.

Lately I've been talking to clients, prospects, and colleagues about social media. Reading books and articles; really diving in to it. So many marketers are trying to get their brain around how to leverage this new channel. So many folks are writing articles about how social media is a game-changing paradigm shift for marketing. Here's my take: it's not.

What's really different about social media (sites like Twitter, Facebook, YouTube, or LinkedIn)? To some extent, you can't buy your way in. People have to WANT to listen to you - or they don't. Most any company with the cash can get lots of eyeballs with 30 seconds at Superbowl halftime. But which commercials actually realize benefit to that investment? The ones that have something interesting to SAY!

So, unless you're Ashton Kutcher, you better have a solid strategy going in to this social media world. Or your "tweets" (on any platform) will be falling on deaf ears. Here are some tips on what to put in your social media strategy:

1. Personality.
Your social media presence should have a real person (or people) attached to it. People have to care about and connect to the voice of your company.

2. Consistency.
You have to be there consistently, and be patient - it takes time to build credibility and presence in the social world. It's like dating. Don't make a marriage proposal on the first date.

3. Authenticity.
Be honest. People will instantly recognize if you're not.

4. Remarkability.
Do something that is unusual in your business - or unusual in general. Be incredibly funny, or candid, or opinionated, or generous. Then talk about it. This is the way to go "viral" and get broad-based attention.

I'm reading several books about social media marketing right now. Stay tuned to my blog for an overview of Twitter Power, The Twitter Revolution, The New Language of Marketing 2.0 and Guerilla Marketing next month.

Want marketing advice? Email me at ada@allegrolink.com - I'd love to help you.