Six Social Media Directions

by Jay Deragon on 04/26/2011

The word directions means several things including: guidance or supervision of action or conduct : an explicit instruction : the line or course on which something is moving or is aimed to move or along which something is pointing or facing : a channel or direct course of thought or action : the art and technique of directing a group of people to accomplish an aim.

The marketplace is filled with thousands and thousands of individuals, organizations, products and services all claiming to help other people and organizations with directions on how to use social media.  The problem is that not all directions will take you to the place you want to go.

Where Do You Want To Go?

Many businesses jump into social media without knowing what they want to do, where they should do it, who do they want to reach, how will they reach them and why the market may choose to engage with them. Instead too many businesses simply look at social technology as just another channel to “push” out offerings hoping they will catch a few transaction. The market fails to recognize that 96% of all online advertising doesn’t get the audiences attention and thus no engagement is accomplished.

In order to get anywhere efficiently people and businesses need to first know (knowledge) of “where” they want to go and “how” (by what methods) they will get there.  Today the marketplace of conversations is “what” attracts the masses to the medium. Why? Because conversations offer new knowledge, sharing with relevant and relative content that the market consumes and uses to create value for others.   Today’s road map of social media contains networks (roads to travel) and content (the vehicle) to take you “where” you can engage your market. However, like in the physical world, the quickest way to get somewhere isn’t always the obvious route. Unless you’ve “traveled the territory” the shortest routes won’t always show up on your “goggle maps” if you know what we mean. Distance on the internet is irrelevant. Time and productivity are  elements you must know (knowledge) “how” to use in your favor.  Consider:

  1. It is easy to build thousands of connections or followers but not so easy to build relevant and relative relationships unless your providing content that is in context to your markets interest.
  2. You can spend hours doing the wrong things and doing them wrong only to waste time and productivity
  3. You can write great content but if it isn’t showing up “where” your market is it won’t produce the results you want.
  4. “How” to use social media isn’t about the technology rather it is about where, when and what conversations add the most value to your market.
  5. If you don’t know “why” your using social media then there is no need to have clear directions aimed at taking you somewhere. A system without an aim produces nothing.
  6. Understanding the lay of the land, the roadblocks, traps, traffic patterns, new roads and where they take you is something that requires knowledge and wisdom. Copying and following doesn’t require either.

There Are No Quick Answers

Most business leaders want quick answers. When is comes to effectively using social media to accomplish specific objectives to get you where you want to go there is no quick answers rather their is only knowledge to either find or create.  You can find knowledge within the marketplace of conversations. You can also take existing knowledge and create new knowledge which in turn will pull the market to you. Either way it takes time, talent and knowledge to find the answers to the questions that relate to the directions you need to follow to get to where you want to go.  Get it?

For a copy of our white paper that covers the who, what,where,when why and how to find the right answers to the right social media  questions click here.

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