Wednesday, June 17, 2009

5 Reasons Social Media Can Be Like Lingerie

Let us count the ways:

1. It is revealing: Whatever you say or show in the social world is out there for all to see. You may feel partially covered (hidden) in Social Media, but just like wearing lingerie that is mostly illusion.

2. Its cut says something about you: Show too little or too much and the world will judge. In Social Media are you fully covered and yet very revealing? Or are you barely covered and still impossible to see through?

3. The way you use it speaks volumes: Do you only get into it (Social Media) once in a while? Does it sometimes make you feel uncomfortable? Perhaps more frequent use can overcome these issues.

4. You probably have a combination of pieces: Social Media offers multiple ways to have “fun” while getting into “trouble” Your challenge is to just “wear” what feels comfortable.

5. It can get you into real trouble: Use Social Media inappropriately and you will get in trouble.

And in a sense the best similarity is that in Social Media (as in lingerie) transparency is a very good thing.

Related posts:
10 Commandments for Social Media
10 Things To Watch Out For In Social Media
10 Social Media No-Nos
5 Steps Before Jumping Into Social Media

Friday, June 12, 2009

10 things to watch out for in Social Media

With Social Media being the “it” thing for businesses to “do” these days perhaps it’s a good time to look at 10 things any organization should be wary of:

1. Jumping in for the sake of it: Social Media is like a huge swimming pool. If your only goal is to get wet, by all means jump in. But if you want to get somewhere or to achieve something you need a plan. Work with a trusted Social Media consultant to get measurable results.

2. Being pushy: When you’re new to Social Media people will give you a chance and be forgiving. Get too “it’s all about me” or “you need to buy something from me” and just watch that goodwill evaporate faster than a drop of sweat on hot summer asphalt.

3. Being too talkative: Social Media, at the very least, means communications is a two-way street. The best in this industry are the best listeners.

4. Not sharing: The very best at sharing get more friends, fans and followers in the social world because of their generosity. The more they give the more they get.

5. Not being grateful: People help others in Social Media all the time. Your social capital goes up when you publicly acknowledge that help.

6. Not being honest: The expected in Social Media is total honesty. Be dishonest and you will be publicly humiliated (at the very least). The self-governing social world is littered with the wreckage of people flamed to a crisp by those who were incensed by duplicity.

7. Being just “the spokesperson”: If you’re not perceived as being human then you might as well be a computer. Social Media’s stars have found away to make all their communication have a personality and be hyper-human.

8. Being boring. To avoid it, say something original and from the heart (and keep in brief).

9. Living in TMI-land: Yes Social Media can seem awfully intimate when you update your status and think you’re telling just a few friends about you diarrhea. For the rest of us that is just too much information (TMI).

10. Taking it too seriously: Come on. We’re talking about social platforms like Twitter and Facebook and MySpace and YouTube. These are all dominated by humorous writing, pictures, audio and video. If you can have some fun, others will too.

The online reputation you end up with is everyone else’s sense of how you handle all of the above.

Most of all? Your mother was right: Do unto others as you would have them do unto you is a good basis for all of life (including Social Media).

Related posts:
10 Commandments for Social Media
5 strategies to get the Boss into Social Media

Saturday, June 6, 2009

10 Social Media No-Nos

Things that will (at least) earn you a bad rep or (at worst) get you fired

Social Media can both be a very forgiving and a very unforgiving environment for a newbie.

It can be forgiving when users are genuine in their interactions and confess their sins, own up to their errors and behave politely. Under these circumstances it is likely their community will understand and forgive them.

Social Media can also be unforgiving when it senses someone is behaving in an “anti-social” way. While many of the acceptable norms in Social Media are obvious, some may be less so.

Therefore here are 10 Social Media No-Nos. Commit any of these sins and watch your reputation slide, or worse if you are publicly representing a business, you may get fired:

1. Not Listening: This happens a lot in life and Social Media is no different. If you want to get more out of your interactions with others you need to be a good listener. For a great take on this see Five Levels Of Social Media Responses

2. Not Responding: Just as in life it can be rude to not answer someone who is talking to you. There are rare exceptions: When someone is being rude to you, they do not always deserve a response.

3. Not Responding Appropriately: You should always respond in kind (or better yet take the high road). If someone says something you disagree with privately question them. “Flaming” someone (engaging in an ugly public debate) will leave everyone charred.

4. Not Being Genuine: Social Media lives on the Web so if you choose to be less than “real” you will be discovered. Fakes do not survive long in the ultra-connected world of SoMedia.

5. Not Being Humble: Your life may be the best and your successes too numerous to count, but nobody likes a public braggart. Your ego may fight you on this, but you need to remember Social Media is about everyone else and a certain equality of ideas and opinions.

6. Not Being Responsible: Social Media can be a powerful tool. With power comes responsibility. Be a jerk, slander someone or be hurtful online and it will come back to haunt you.

7. Being Rude: Manners cost you nothing but some forethought and consideration of others. If you truly don’t know the right thing to do in a given situation you can always try the searchable database at The Emily Post Institute.

8. Not Being Sympathetic: Life is hard. People make mistakes and suffer misfortune. Being seen as unsympathetic will earn you a bad rep in life – online that rep will spread even faster and further.

9. Not Sharing: If you are fortunate enough to have expertise or access to resources that can help others please share them. Social Media rewards those who share with good Karma points. Many of today’s online superstars got there by being good at sharing themselves and their resources.

10. Sharing Too Much: Conversely, there are those who share too much detail, too much noise and too much irrelevancy. Know your communities and understand what it is about you they most want to hear.

Related posts
10 Commandments for Social Media
Twetiquette: 10 basics for Twitter politeness
Social Media disasters