Sunday, November 15, 2009

Blatant Self-Promotion or Awesome Social Media?

Hi, my name is Erica Friedman, I help small and niche businesses learn to use Social Media tools with a method I call Find-Engage-Reward, short for Find Your Audience - Engage Your Audience - Reward Your Market.

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Which one of these is Blatant Self-Promotion and which one is Awesome Social Media?


The line between Awesome Social Media and Blatant Self-Promotion is not *nearly* as simple to define as you'd imagine. Because this is a blog post and not a long conversation between us, I'm going to oversimplify horribly for convenience and readability.

Awesome Social Media is Descriptive

Is your statement as fully descriptive as possible, or do you hold back crucial information in order to get people to click a link? Awesome Social Media shares information freely. Sure, you have your own skills that you bring to the table and there's nothing wrong with saying "That's where I come in." But if you're relying on one-liners with no real content, it's probably Blatant Self-Promotion.

Awesome Social Media is Relevant

Take a look at your primary Social Media. Are you addressing client issues, answering questions, sharing information in a space where people want to know these things? Or does it basically look like a Press Release page on a website? Awesome Social Media talks to people who care. Blatant Self-Promotion stands on a box on a street corner and shouts at passers-by.

Awesome Social Media Interacts

When someone addresses you directly, do you respond meaningfully? That sounds simple, but fewer companies get this than you'd imagine. "Contact customer support" or "take a look at our FAQs" is not actually a helpful response. Awesome Social Media solicits feedback and interaction by setting up situations in which your audience feels welcome to weigh in on an issue - and then responds in a way that shows that you really care about what they have to say.

Awesome Social Media is Human

Real. Authentic. Human. Not a prepackaged set of party lines, but something that one person might say to another. A major telecommunications company made a splash reaching out of the customer service comfort zone and really addressing client issues. That's Awesome Social Media.

Blatant Self-Promotion is not actually a bad thing - every once in a while. It's smart to let folks know about sales, discounts, promotional offers and the like. Awesome Social Media is all the time. When you develop an Awesome Social Media strategy, your audience will be perfectly fine with the ocassional Blatant Self-Promotion, because they'll know that when it's about them, not you - you'll be there for them.

Now it's your turn - what are *your* key indicators that someone is using Awesome Social Media as opposed to Blatant Self-Promotion?
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