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Once More with Feeling: A Facebook Page IS NOT a Social Media Strategy.

Mary Schmidt

Aug 29, 2013

zebra Im an expertOne of my (real-life 3-D) friends recently told me of a local who has decided to become a social media consultant since “there is no social media expertise in Albuquerque.”  Ahem. Moving along…(The snarky zebra image is one I use in my social media workshops, where we talk about how to get results…and the fact you may not even need a Facebook page, ever.)

So, how did this local come by his expertise? Years of work in developing, implementing and managing integrated offline/online marketing strategies, based on industry-specific factors?  Far-ranging, diverse experience in marketing? Extensive education in social media technologies and how/when/why to use them? 

Nope. He’s an expert because he has a popular Facebook page, which is less than a year old.  Yup, that’s it.  Now, good for him that he’s popular. Good that people like him. Nothing wrong with that. But how much money is he making from his Facebook page? How many of those likes have translated into dollars?  Has he attracted investors? Customers? Can he point to a tangible result? “Likes” don’t, in and of themselves, mean much.

But don’t take it from me. I’m no expert. (There are, at last count, 6,790,000 results for a “social media expert” search on Google. Yikes! Some that you can even hire for only $15 an hour!) You can read more from these smart people: 
How to tell the difference between a social media maven, a ninja, and a guru (from David Holmes, PandoDaily. I laugh out loud every time i read this.) 
7 Things Your Social Media Consultant Should Tell You (Fast Company, 2012. Still very relevant.) #3: “I don’t care about follower counts.”  #4. “Facebook and Twitter are only a start.”
How to Become a Social Media Guru in Twenty Steps (Ian Anderson Gray, Social Media Today)

Related Posts From My Archives:
Are You Listening to the Right People?
Social Media Isn’t Marketing.
What Social Media Won’t Do For You
Why You Shouldn’t Hire Me as a Twitter Expert
“I’m popular. I’m pretty. Why am I still poor.” From 2006 and I’m writing about web sites, but applicable to social media.  And, your web site is, in fact, your first (best?) social media tool.

In Pet Peeves, Social Media Reality Checks

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Social Media Isn't Free, Easy or Magic.

If one of the self-anointed experts contacts you, pitching magical thinking, ask:

1. What results can I expect if I work with you? (Note: Twitter followers aren't necessarily customers.)

2. What kind of time will I have to invest? (Social media, properly done, is all about personal relationships. You with your customers...and a good relationship takes time.)

3. How do I integrate social media tools with my current operations? (Your salespeople need to know what you're saying on Facebook. Your customer service process and policies should be consistent across the board, from phone to Twitter.)

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