Kyle Flaherty wrote a great thought-provoking post today about balancing the social media noise and keeping the focus on productivity. In it he dug up a question he asked his readers one year ago: "What is your social media tipping point?"
As I asked myself this question I started to mentally hyperventilate. I realized quickly that I'm stuck inside of a giant echo chamber of social media pundits talking to each other -- and that I've been guilty of doing that, too. After kicking myself repeatedly I decided to work on getting myself out. When embarking on my personal plan, I came up with a short list of things that are especially getting on my nerves.
- Popularity contests
- Social media "consultants"
- The "why you need X" tool discussions
- Did I mention popularity contests?
My focus, much like Flaherty's, is on finding ways for social media make sense for an enterprise technology business. Forget what some of the personal branding and B2C folks tell you -- the same fundamentals of social media that work for their efforts don't always apply to enterprise IT companies. The formula is still in the works and the jury is still out on exactly how it works, despite a bunch of different proposed options.
In order to do this I need to start clearing out some of the noise. I care less about how Bob Smith made himself the most popular person on the Web and how. Just because Bob can promote himself does not mean he understand my company or my space. I need to stop reading blogs -- even if I love the bloggers -- who talk about how to become an influencer or measure your personal influencer or or or... Bring me more Flaherty. Bring me Peter Kim. Bring me Dennis Howlett. Bring me Oliver Marks. Bring me Dave Fleet. Bring me more people who understand what is bunk and what is not and what the Global 1000 are finding to be successful and what their technology buyers are doing. Bring me case studies. Those are the things I want to read.
Let me inform you -- having a blog or being popular on a social network does not an expert make. I am certainly not one. I am an information sponge who likes to share what she's learned through writing. Also, patting each other on the back for recycling the same ideas should not be allowed. We should expect more out of each other and ourselves. Social media provides new communication vehicles but the basic fundamentals of good business planning still apply. Isn't it irresponsible to be so self-congratulatory when so many businesses are being sold snake oil or still have no clue what any of this means to them?
Oh, and finally, I'll say it. Some businesses just don't need to have an active social media presence.
Do you have ideas for getting other social media folks to step up and take their messages outward? Are you passionate about enterprise technology, too? Will you be at SXSWi? I am open to a discussion. Email me via the form below. And bring your "A game."