“It’s not you, it’s . . . you.” Passive Aggressiveness on Social Media.
My recent post What Annoys Me MOST about Facebook, stirred some fairly heated conversations among my colleagues and friends. “Are you talking about me?” “Were you talking about ___ (insert name here)?” Apparently it struck a nerve. Both positive and negative. I had numerous emails and tweets that agreed with me. Still others were defensive even if they had not specifically written any of my “top annoyances” on their page. I even had someone come up to me at a conference and say “I agree. I don’t care what type of chilli you’re making.” I was taken back for a second then laughed as I knew what he was referencing.
On the off chance you will get offended at this blog, please note, that my writings come from weeks of research. I mean, any social media “guru” knows I just need to study something for a few weeks and I can be called an “expert.”
A colleague, who I consider a good friend, knew I was writing this post and cautioned “Adam, you’re not a psychologist.” I agree. So please, get off my couch and just listen.
“Passive Aggressive” is defined by Dictionary.com as ” being, marked by, or displaying behavior characterized by expression of negative feelings, resentment, and aggression in an unassertive way (as through procrastination, stubbornness, and unwillingness to communicate) < span=””> <>passive-aggressive personality”
You’ve seen it. A recent break-up. A friendship gone sour. Or simply just being unhappy about the way someone treated you. They are all painful experiences. I’m certainly not making light of them because we all know how painful those experiences are. Heartbreaking even.
But then, it all starts to unfold before our eyes in our news stream. A song posted with jabbing lyrics. Changing of a favorite quote to “If someone you love hurts you cry a river, build a bridge, and get over it.” Then like it or not, we are forced to choose sides. Or at least feel sympathy and “like” their status. After all, I’m not a good friend if I don’t publicly sympathize with their pain by clicking my mouse.
I like what Teresa Boarman said in her blog “A social media tip for the passive aggressive:”
“In general you can say anything to your twitter, or facebook, friends or in blog comments, emails or even text messages if you know the rules. Write what ever you want to and just end it with a “:)” or a “LOL”. It goes something like this: “You suck LOL” or “I can’t stand you I would be surprised if your own mother loved you ”
So friends, I leave you with this: stop being passive aggressive on social media. The rest of us just want to get on FB and see cute photos of your kids, funny things that happened that day, or meaningful updates about your life.
I really would rather not be sucked into taking sides. And if I do take sides, I’ll let you know privately. LOL. =)
“What is the Internet Anyway?”
Before you read the rest of this post, please, watch this video. (Thanks Rich for sending this to me last week).
I can’t stop laughing at this video with Bryant Gumbel and Katie Couric. I love the commentary about the @ symbol; especially Katie drawing it with her finger in the air.
Ok, so seriously, why is this video worthy of a blog post?
Can you recognize the same conversations being held today? It wasn’t to long ago that many news casters were saying:
“What’s this Twitter thing?”
“How do you tweet someone?”
Do we see the trend here? Once skeptical of email and the “massive computer network,” America’s top news organizations didn’t even know about the internet. Now, they couldn’t do business without it.
Disagree if you will, but I believe that “social media,” and in particular my favorite, Twitter, is doing for our generation what the internet did 15 years ago.
- Every late-night talk show that I watch is using Twitter or Facebook to communicate with their audience. This morning on my drive into work, the morning show I listen to was using Twitter to ask their listeners to respond to a particular segment – all in real time.
- The most respected news organizations in the world use Twitter to communicate.
- Job seekers are finding jobs by leveraging their connections on Twitter.
- No more sitting on the phone going through the maze of automated hell. Customer service departments are leveraging Twitter to respond quickly to their customers. See a personal example in my own life here.
- Min Xuan evens goes as far to say that Twitter changed her life. P.S. love the 5 stages of Twitter acceptance slide.
When talking someone, I can immediately tell if they understand the power that Twitter has or if they still think it’s a colossal joke or waste of time.
I could list many more useful examples of how Twitter is changing (and has changed) communication, but the point of my blog is not to try and change your mind on Twitter. However, I do want the image of Katie Couric, and her initial conversations about the internet, burned into your brain. So that the next time you start to make fun of Twitter or brush it off as a waste of time, rethink how the internet has revolutionized our lives.
Takeaways from #SocialFresh. Social Media Atlanta Week – 2010.
Thanks to Bob Kennedy from ExactTarget, I was able to get into the afternoon session of the sold-out SocialFresh meeting (part of Social Media Atlanta Week).
Main topic of discussion: Facebook.
I still think many companies roll their eyes when they hear that Facebook is one of the best tools for business. To all you eye-rollers, that’s fine, the rest of us will connect with your customers. (At least for the next five years).
Case-in-point – Chick-fil-a.
Not only one of the best designed Facebook pages I’ve seen, but they truly interact with their audience. They have their “corporate” page (actually founded by a fan), but they also have local restaurant fanpages. I don’t think I’ve met anyone that is “lukewarm” about Chick-fil-a. They either love it, or don’t. So for them, interacting locally on Facebook with their “fans” is really paying off.
Corporately it’s paying off too. Most of their marketing for the Spicy Chicken Sandwhich was done through social media. I don’t have the exact number, but over 1 million people “reserved” a spot to go into a local restaurant and try the new sandwich. 1 million people made reservations at a FAST FOOD joint! (Myself included.) Tell them that social media doesn’t work . .
Moving on . . .
- Facebook is going public in 2012.
- Don’t use bit.ly for shortening URLs (guilty). It’s an open site. So just putting a + after any bit.ly URL shows all of the clicked information. Try it. Copy this url – http://bit.ly/aU5o0j – put it into your brower, then but a + right after and hit enter. (Thanks to Yvett Evans from Vitrue for that insight).
- Studies show that campaigns that start on Facebook perform better if you drive the audience to another page on Facebook. So, instead of creating ads that then drive the audience to your website, drive them to a uniquely created tab on Facebook. – Thanks to @justinkistner for that insight.
- Engagement life of targeted campaigns on Facebook – two weeks.
- Companies are modeling their websites after social media. More social. More interaction. Which wasn’t cutting-edge news to me, but it’s good to hear. If you think about it, 90% of websites are one-way communication. But, allowing your audience to interact with your brand on your website is key. Especially if and when social media starts to lose it’s hype.
The afternoon ended with a great panel discussion (Vitrue, Graco, and Webtrends) on the use of Facebook for business.
From Left to Right.
Erika Brookes is the vice president, marketing for Vitrue.
Kelly Voelker Public Relations and Social Media Manager, Graco Children’s Products.
Justin Kistner is the Senior Manager of Social Media Marketing for Webtrends
Your ‘Office’ Social Media Personalities – That’s What She Said.
Most people know the socially and professionally awkward Michael Scott. His inappropriate one-liners and off-color humor catapulted The Office to the top of the ratings for the past few years. As I was watching the other night, I thought about the different characters, and how they would use social media if Dunder Mifflin encouraged it.
Click Here to read by post on the MATRIX Blog about the typical social media personalities in your office.
Your company is Tweeting, Facebooking, and Blogging. So what?
So, your company is on Twitter, Facebook, and has started a blog. So what?
Are you connecting to the right people? Are you seeing any results from your efforts?
Every self-proclaimed social media mogul says “listen first,” then speak. I agree, but where do you listen, who do you listen to, and how do you listen on SM?
I usually pick a “target audience” every few days and concentrate on building a relationship with them.
For example, let’s say your company wants to sell Zen Gardens to stressed-out CEOs. (It was the first thing I saw when I looked around my desk).
Step 1 – Connect. First, I suggest checking your database for all CEOs that your currently working with. Run internal searches to see if any of them are on social media. It’s important to connect with people you already know, and see who they are connected with. Done that already? Then, how about running a boolean search (you can use this one) on Google and find CEO’s on LinkedIn that are also on Twitter.
Step 2 – Listen. How do you listen on social media? All those people you just connected with in Step 1, now it’s time to listen, not in a stalkerish way, but in a way that knows what’s going on in their world. Are they asking questions you can provide input to? Can you help sponsor an event? Do you have common personal interests/goals? All of those things are conversations to be on the lookout for. I like using Twitter Lists on TweetDeck so I can put people into categories and quickly monitor what that group is saying. By quickly, I mean scanning through their tweets once or twice a day.
Step 3 – Interact. I think this is where many companies potentially drop the ball. They get their SM sites going, then, like Field of Dreams they hope customers will come. Building a true social media platform takes a bit of an entrepreneurial spirit. Always thinking of ways to interact and build relationships. A few basic examples: comment on a blog post, RT their information, support them in their speaking engagements, just interact with them! People on SM love when their content spreads.
Step 4 – Give. I like to use the word give because relationships never work if your a “taker.” So, give to your connections. Provide meaningful content via a blog or Twitter feed. Support their efforts whether speaking or blogging. Could they benefit from knowing another one your connections? Introduce them. Do you have an event they might be interested in attending? Invite them. Let your connections know that you are not all about you.
Step 5 – Engage. Now that you’ve had meaningful interactions with them, it’s time to pull the “relationship” even closer. Maybe they could guest author on your blog about the stress CEOs are facing. Or you could sponsor a series of Webinars for other CEOs. I’m making this up but you get the point. Your goal is for them to become an advocate of your SM efforts and of your organization.
I’m not claiming to be a sales expert. But, most sales people would agree that the best “deals” are done with those who they’ve built a solid relationship with. Social Media is a great tool to lay the foundation for a good relationship.
If all of this stresses you out, I’ve got a Zen Garden with your name on it.
“How Do You Know She’s a Witch?” . . . “She Looks Like One!”
Social Media. Social Media. Social Media!
There. Let’s get it out of our system.
Nowadays companies love to throw a social media “phrase” into the mix, sometimes completely unrelated and out of the blue. Much like the peasants in Monty Python (watch the scene here). trying to dress up a witch, companies throw up a Facebook page and declare they are now on social media.
Yes, SM is great. But I say it all the time, it’s not the “Holy Grail” of marketing.
More importantly than creating a Facebook Page or jumping onto twitter, is looking at how SM can fit into your overall marketing strategy. More specifically let’s talk about the “customer experience.”
In some companies the “customer experience” is managed by a completely different department. But at MATRIX we talk a lot about it in our marketing meetings. After all, the marketing department should be helping with your branding, and the customer’s experience is going to brand you. Good or bad.
Because Social Media was the “buzz” of 2009, companies every where were throwing up SM positions and targeting recent college grads to start tweeting.
I understand that SM its new territory and companies were unsure about it’s “value,” but one thing that was failed to realize was SM, if done right, plays a HUGE part in your customer experience.
So, let’s back up. What do you do? How can you ensure that SM fits into your overall strategy, and guarantee that it provides a great experience for your customers?
- Make sure your SM team knows your brand! It’s easy to tweet or create a Facebook page, but does the person behind it know your brand to the core? Better yet, do they know your target audience.
- Train your team on “best practices.” How should they respond to a complaint? Or to a question they don’t know? – For Heaven’s sake, don’t just say “I don’t know. . .”
- Engage them in the discussions about your marketing strategy. The SM team should know what the overall goals are. Brainstorm ways that SM can fit into and help achieve those goals. Basically, make sure they know where the company is going.
- Incorporate SM efforts into your CRM strategy. If your SM team deals directly, even as much as a RT from a client or customer, it needs to be documented. You want to ensure that the rest of the company knows there was an interaction. Especially if there was a complaint. If you customer complains on social media, they shouldn’t have to then talk on the phone with someone that has no idea about the complaint.
- Encourage them to “look deeper.” This is probably the most vague point, but don’t just settle for the status quo. Encourage them to look deeper at the stats. What are the trends, what does your audience seem most interested in?
As you quest for your own Holy Grail using Social Media, keep in mind it all comes down to forming genuine, not illusory relationships. Providing a way to connect with your customer and ensuring that they have a good experience with your brand.
Social Media Privacy? Get Over It!
Part One – Everyone you know is a potential business lead.
That’s right. Whether or not you are currently a job seeker, chances are that you will be at some point. I apologize up front, this is going to be a little long. But it’s worth it.
As a recruiter, I consider everyone a potential job seeker, even (maybe especially) other recruiters. I also consider everyone a potential client, future partner, or employer.
You should too. My point is that you never know where your next lead may come from.
Suppose Suzy is a stay at home mom. She might not be any of those things listed above. But her husband, neighbor, or cousin could be. And if she knows about you, or what you do, or what kind of job you are looking for, etc., because you have been verbal about it on social media, she may very well be able to refer you into your next great opportunity.
And the more people you have in your network, friends, family, business people or colleagues, who get to know you better because of your profile and positive things you post, the better your odds are of generating those leads on a regular basis.
Part 2 – My Facebook Profile is Personal, Not Business. Phooey!
I just returned from a conference in London where one of the interesting topics that came up was that of using Facebook for business or career gain. Recruiters and other business people in the UK are very conservative about opening up their Facebook profiles for business use. Most can’t imagine connecting with clients or job candidates in such a private place.
I told my Brit counterparts that we were a bit like that in the U.S. about a year ago. And we got over it. Facebook is the largest social network in the world. And everyone on it is a potential lead. Why would you not take advantage of such a great platform on which to brand yourself and grow a community of people who trust you, and are willing to refer business or job leads to you.
“But there is all this stuff there I wouldn’t want anyone to see!” is the typical response. Phooey! You need to get that stuff off of your profile anyway. Do you really think, just because you don’t accept friend requests from people who you don’t want seeing your private stuff, or because you have your privacy settings a certain way, that the private stuff you have on there can never be discovered?
Part 3 – You’ve Been Hacked
There are people who sit around all day with the sole goal of breaking these barriers. Go to Google right now and search on “hack a Facebook profile“ and you will get hundreds of thousands results and how-to’s. I’m not giving away any secrets here. And chances are that most of these hacks won’t work right this second as Facebook is constantly trying to stay ahead of the hackers.”
But when is the last time you saw a Facebook virus send you or your friend’s profile on a spamming spree? It happens every week. Guess what? That profile has been hacked.
Part 4 – It’s Your Brand – Just Keep it Clean and Keep Your Secrets Offline
The only way to completely keep people from knowing all your dirty secrets is to keep them to yourself. But there are a few things you can do to keep your Facebook profile cleaner.
For one thing, set your privacy settings so that tagged photos of you posted by others are not automatically posted to your profile. And any photos that you do find that are tagged with your name that you deem inappropriate (or just ugly), simply untag them. They cannot be tagged again unless by you.
And just watch what you say, and what you allow people to say back on your wall and other people’s walls. If you don’t like a comment, just delete it.
Super blogger, Rayanne Thorn, in her session on Social Media ROI at the TRULondon II event, said that her rule of thumb is to always assume her mother is reading everything that goes on her Facebook profile. Good advice.
You can find a few more good suggestions like this article, Keep you Facebook profile clean! | Facebook.
So, I say clean up your profile. It’s not really that private anyway. And grow your network. Start posting positive material there that sometimes tells people about what you do in business as well as in life.
No spamming please. You can’t build a good online personal brand if you beat down everyone you know with your home-based business or MLM opportunities every day. But you can build a good reputation and gain trust in you interact positively with your network and post helpful information (not just inspirational quotes) on a fairly regular basis.
Craig Fisher is a founding partner of A-List solutions, blogger at http://blog.fishdogs.com/, and host of the TalentNet Live #TNL recruiter forum. As a 15 year recruiting industry veteran, Craig is a social recruiting & new media branding strategist for job seekers and employers. Follow Craig on Twitter @Fishdogs.
23 and Counting – Social Media Burnout
Today I counted the number of social media/communication tools that I use or manage. Here are the totals for the main ones:
6 E-mail addresses
2 Youtube Accounts
2 Flickr Accounts
4 Twitter accounts
3 “all-in-one” social media management tools
That’s 23+ tools that I work with almost daily. And with a new tool coming out all the time, one can’t help but ask “when is it too much?” And with my role at MATRIX Resources I am constantly researching tools and helping my teammates learn how to use them. Many of them come up to me and say things like “I don’t have time to use all of these things.” And I would agree. They don’t.
So, how can you use these tools but not become overwhelmed by the information or just plain noise that comes from them?
Matthew Cornell, a productivity expert, recently empathized with social media burnout in an article on SFGate.com:
When you sign up for something like Facebook or Twitter, implicitly or explicitly you’re making a commitment to it, and that can be a lot of pressure . . . [and] . . . losing track of time when browsing social media sites can happen easily if you’re not disciplined.”
There’s a word that most people hate. . . discipline. But I have to agree. So to help summarize that article and a few others on social media burn out, here are a few tips:
- Don’t try and keep up with every update, tweet, or wall post.
- Learn to skim – the same way you would skim a newspaper or your e-mail inbox for the most important matters.
- Limit your time of social media sites – build it into your calendar if need be.
- Automate Automate! Schedule tweets in advance.
- Use the parts of the tools that make life/work easier.
A few weeks ago I helped an Account Manager in our office set up a Twitter account. We setup her account and started following people that she knew and other industry experts. As I was talking to her I realized she wasn’t paying attention to me. When she noticed my pause, she said “Sorry, I was trying to read all of these tweets.” I laughed because I knew how overwhelming it can be at first. But, I stressed the importance of “skimming.” Now she is well on her way to building followers and leveraging Twitter (and other tools) to build better relationships.
So discipline yourself, and the time you spend on social media. The last thing we need is another burnout.
My question to you is, how many tools are you using?
“Help! Can I borrow some money?”
Update -10-21-09: Apparently the hacker gained access to my friend’s account when they sent an email, posing as Facebook, asking her to change/reset her password. When she did, they gained access to her Facebook account and her Yahoo email. One more tip: Always go directly to the site to update your password.
LinkedIn Status is NOT the same as Facebook
It’s no secret that LinkedIn is a great way to connect with the business community. Also, it’s a great way to network when you are looking for a job. One way to continually keep your name in front of your connections is to update your LinkedIn status. However, all to often I see updates like “Going to a concert tonight,” or “Looking forward to the weekend.” Though it’s good to let people know that you are not just “all business,” is that really what you want your business connections to constantly see about you?
From his blog “Andy Robinson’s Career Success! Career Tip of the Day,” Andy gives 10 tips for updating your LinkedIn status with content that is professional and will show your connections that you are not just “looking forward to the weekend,” but a hardworking, expert in your field.
Here are a few of my favorite:
- Insert the title and a “shortened” URL link to one of your recent blog articles (bit.ly is a great resource for shortening URL’s)
- A link a newsworthy web posting or news item (include the title and a shortened URL). Alignment with your brand “voice” or area of specialty makes it more powerful. I like to focus on POSITIVE news as opposed to negative news
- A brief piece of advice relevant to your brand or area of specialty.
- A link to an article in which YOU were quoted (I give the title of the article and a shortened URL link to the article). This is a powerful PR and branding activity.
- Recent results and key activities at work. Something like “Just landed three new Executive Career Coaching clients this week; excited about launching those engagements!”
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