Saturday, October 2, 2010

How to Survive the Social Media Craze

There are a lot of bloggers, experts, gurus and ninjas claiming to have found the magic formula to social media success.  It's easy!  All you need to do is buy their ebook, podcast or YouTube video series for the low price of $24.99 and your company will harness the incredible power of social media to grow beyond your wildest dreams.  You can get that boat you've been dreaming about and spend your days in relaxing in luxurious slendor.  And if you believe that, I've got some snake oil for you...

The fact is, there really is a simple key to social media, but you don't need to buy anything because it's sooo easy!  In fact, intelligent businesses have been practicing this "secret" for ages - social media just increases the benefit they get out of this simple thing.

Are you ready?  Here it sales pitch necessary:  Everything you do must be worth sharing. 

Everything should be shareworthy.  If you have a great product, don't cheap out on your advertising budget.  You're great looking store shouldn't be filled with McHires.  It costs money, but did you really get to where you are by cutting corners?

Look at a company like Apple.  Steve Jobs shows their new commercials to a sold out crowd at the company's MacWorld conference every year.  Seriously, who cheers for a commercial?  At a recent keynote, Jobs showed off the company's newest retail stores in Paris to great applause.  At WWDC the company showed off a live demo of their FaceTime software.  The reason people were cheering (and sharing/talking about it online and even in the press) is because it's actually worth talking about.  Apple consistently delivers content that is extraordinary.  The Mac vs PC commercials were FUNNY.  The company's new technology is EXCITING and their retail stores are absolutely GORGEOUS.

If you're worth talking about, people will carry your message online and you'll reap the benefits of that authenticity.  Don't cut corners.  Be sure you're actions are true to the spirit of your company - do this and your company will survive the social media craze.  Hey, who might even make a few extra sales as well!

And because I can feel the glares from the social media experts in the audience - yes, there are things you can do to help stoke the coals... but if you aren't worth talking about, even these won't help.