Social ME-dia vs Social Networking

Rockin’ Robots

When I owned my recording studio, we did a lot of cool projects. I remember one of my favorites was when we recorded the jingle and soundtrack to an animated show at The Enchanted Castle (a local Chuck E Cheese type Restaurant and Entertainment center). By animated, I mean it was a bunch of animatronic robots that would sing and play instruments. It was cool to see our work live, while the kids loved to play the games.

Jealous, Mouse?

I am sure you have seen people that treat social media like a trip to Chuck-E-Cheese. If you have little kids and a local Chuck-E-Cheese, you know the drill. They keep throwing tokens into the machines so they can get as many tickets as possible. Then they try to cash them in for trinkets. You know you could have bought ten of what ever you kids bring back for the cost of what it took to win the tickets to trade in for one!

That’s how some people treat social media. They try to gather as many followers as possible so they can get a large audience for their broadcast sales messages. They trade in their relationships for a few sales. Trust me, people know when they are being treated like paper tickets.

Can you really have relationships with hundreds or thousands of people. Well… that depends. It depends on who you are and what you have to offer. Are you using social media or are you social networking?

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Social ME-dia

iStock_000007779520XSmallSocial ME-dia (spelled ME-dia on purpose) is where you are trying to focus on you and not others. That, my friends, is advertising not relationship marketing. Let me explain…

Most celebrities have one way communications. They post and people follow. Many celebrities have millions of followers and follow only a few. Tiger Woods has 3 million followers and follows only 17 on twitter. Ashton Kutcher has 14 million followers and follows around 700 people. Oprah has 17 million plus followers and follows only 100 plus people. That is Social ME-dia! I am not dissing what celebs do because it works for them. They are not there to communicate with you… just at you. No one has time to build lasting relationships with 17 million people, do they?

Social Networking is just that… networking through on-line social tools. It’s an extension of your face-to-face networking. You are continuing relationships that you have made in person. It’s sometimes one-to-one, sometimes one-to-many, but not always just broadcasting without interaction.

iStock_000010031937XSmallThere is no rule that says someone who has hundreds or thousands of followers is just a broadcaster. They may just be very popular because they often post relevant and useful information. But in my experience, there are many more Social ME-dia people with lot’s of followers, than there are Social Networkers.

At this time, the average number of followers a business or person has is: Facebook profile – 200 plus, Facebook Business Page – 100 plus, Twitter Account – 200 plus, LinkedIn Profile – 150 plus. There are varying numbers on all of these, but I am sure they are pretty close to reality, since I get the chance to help many clients with their accounts.

I think you have a better chance of knowing 100-200 people personally in business, rather than thousands. Exceptions include those who work all over the country or world. Look at your address book, and your Quickbooks (or other accounting system). Chances are your have 250-500 people in your address book and 50-150 clients in your Quickbooks. If you have more people in your network will the number will be larger.

Final Thoughts

iStock_000012552769XSmallThere is no prize for the person with the most contacts and it’s only measured by those who want more contacts. The real prize comes to those who create the most interactions with the contacts they already have. These interactions usually lead to more interpersonal interactions, and ultimately sales. That is the difference between Social ME-dia and Social Networking.

What is you take on this? Do you follow people who do nothing but post commercials, or do you remove and unfriend them? I would love to hear your comments and feedback!

photo by: Jennie Faber

Comments: 2

  • Sean Humby says:

    Very enjoyable read – key point for me “The real prize comes to those who create the most interactions with the contacts they already have” Creating interactions online can really help when you meet face to face – the relationship that is the key has been started by something as simple as a shared link, an “I saw this and thought of you” the passing on of a lead – all very simple to do.

  • Sean… Thanks for the comment and feedback!

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