Sunday, August 25, 2013

SOCIAL MEDIA: Don’t Turn People Off, Turn them ON



   In the simplest of terms… social media shouldn’t be a hard push. Not for sales, not for personal financial gain, not for propaganda and not for intentional self- promotion.  Any of the above has a decent chance at turning people off as they check your Facebook, your Twitter, your Instagram or any other social media space attached to your name.
    It wasn’t all that long ago that I was asked to do a “live chat”… answering questions on Twitter that would basically create a live interview for the host’s site.  For me, it was quite a learning experience.   While flattered by the offer… answering questions for an hour proved a bit annoying for some of my “followers.”  The questions – while not overly in depth – needed answers that could hardly be put into 140 characters.  Factor in the necessary ”#” on each response needed to create the live stream … and it became a challenge to answer in 3 tweets or less.  In the end, I lost some followers who probably didn’t enjoy their Twitter feed being “hijacked” for the better part of 70 minutes by my give and take.  My apologies… and while I admit I’d do it again because the host is doing good things for the industry in which we work, I’d alter the rules of “engagement” a bit to create a better experience.
Great Opportunity - If Managed Properly
    Having said that, “live chats” and “Google Hangouts” are becoming more and more popular.  The key is to provide information and expertise of value.  And … to do it in a respectable amount of time.   In other words… have something to say the gets people moving toward you and not away from you.
    The hope… with each “tweet,” post or blog is to create or deliver at least one of the following:

* Feeling of Inclusion – everyone wants to feel “connected” these days.  Social media, after all, means being social. So make sure you work to include, connect, and provide a real look at what you are about.
* Relevant  Information – who isn’t looking for help on something?  Whether it’s how to hook up your stereo system, what the latest fashion trends might be … or when might be a good time to tweet (try the noon hour)… if you provide something people want, you’ve just won them over.  
* Call to Action – people want inspiration beyond just entertainment.  If they didn’t, there wouldn’t be a “speaker’s bureau” or a “job fair” that gets people moving after absorbing the information.
Nobody scrolls down their Twitter feed without stopping on something.  And nobody zips through their news feed on Facebook without being held for a at least a few seconds.  The question becomes – what will you do to turn people on to your space?

    It’s like reading down the list of stocks in the paper.  What stops you is what interests you. 
You Can't Make Them "LIKE" You... But You Can Turn Them Off
So make sure that when people see you…. there’s reason enough to pay attention.  Because if you turn them on to you…. those folks will turn others your way as well.
    Thanks for the “read” today … and thanks for passing this along to others… and spreading the word.  Let me know what sticks with you – and I invite you to follow me on Twitter @KraigKann.

Thought for the Day:  If you work to build your professional, personal or company brand through providing value to others, they will come.