Keep Social Media Fun and Tasty

JJBaybee
Zohare Haider Regional Head of Digital, Wider South Asia, British Council

Posted on December 6th 2012

Keep Social Media Fun and Tasty

PBJI often find that Social Media comes across as a big scary monster too many people who have yet to scope the fundamental utility each network and platform offers users. I’ll share why you should take care and avoid the murky waters of social media, yet still have lots of fun with it.

When people seek advice on the right approach or how to get started even, I find that not only is a large audience still generally unaware of the 1, 2, 3’s of social presence, they are also concerned with such things as privacy and content curation – whether for personal or professional reasons. Often times this ‘lack’ of awareness is due simply to intimidation and fear of the unknown.

One of the first things I learnt very quickly, probably because I have been ‘online’ for a few years and by that I mean I’ve done the rounds with MySpace, Orkut, university-level Facebook and so forth; social isn’t new – it’s just the old with a facelift. If you’ve read my other ramblings, you’ll know I say this often.

Still, there are rules of engagement and, in order to capitalize on the efficiency each platform offers, it’s good to go through the various (and free) guidelines offered by the likes of @Mashable, @TechCrunch, @Hubspot and our good friend @ThisIsSethsBlog – all of whom are masters in creating reach. Isn’t that what social media is all about? Forget the buzz words that everyone’s uses; instead, start by focusing on where the river flows and find effective ways to channel that noise in your favor. I’ll contradict myself later.

I’m personally concerned with the mush being created when each social platform for a brand is interlinked and the noise is repeated across the various points of presence, in exactly the same manner. Next you’ll see Instagram photos cross-posted on Pinterest…just to maintain presence on both, when all you need is just the one.

Social media, I try to tell myself, shouldn’t be so much about gaining followers by spreading yourself too thin, but about generating genuine, long-lasting interest and scaling with care. Like PBJ sandwiches, lay it on thick, man. Make it tasty and keep them coming back for more! I’m no pro but I think the basics of establishing online presence and digital storytelling can include (but are not limited to) using the right social platforms that bring positive impact to you and your brand (especially if you are your brand). This means that maybe (and I’m just speculating here) you don’t have to be on twitter because half a billion people are. That said, it doesn’t mean you shouldn’t give it a test drive before dismissing its potential.

The way I see it, with all the noise being channeled in popular directions, it’s the little buggers swimming opposite the current that tend to pick up solid mileage (the contradiction). Think about it yourself, when there are a billion accounts on facebook, you are only relevant to your friends/immediate circles. The same way, when brands brag about themselves, its friends of the brand that care – the one’s you already have onboard. Once you get the hang of a platform, exploit it by taking chances and doing crazy things – you never know how interesting the results can be.

While it’s highly crucial to retain their attention, you also think about growing your audience. The answer may not lie with any one social platform, but it also may not be waiting for you when all platforms have your name on them. Like your battles, pick your social networks wisely. We were always social; we’re only just realizing ways to concentrate the energy.

 

Photo Credit: janaandjoe.blogspot.com


Zohare is a tri-lingual communications professional, with a Bachelors in life, now living and earning in Qatar. He still tweets as @JJBaybee

JJBaybee

Zohare Haider

Regional Head of Digital, Wider South Asia, British Council

Zohare is the Regional Head of Digital at British Council. Previously, he was with Ooredoo (formerly Qtel Group), where he was program managing the build-up of a new Digital Innovation and Advisory services unit to support all of Qtel's Big global business throughout Middle East, North Africa and Asia.

A graduate of Bucknell University (USA), Zohare has extensive experience working with global leaders in Telecoms, Venture/Patient Capital and Social Enterprise. His key interests are to build strategic relations and partnerships,  believing strongly in the synergy between digital and offline consumer engagement strategies. He loves to try and demystify digital by making it user-friendly. 

Find out more at about.me/zohare

See Full Profile >

Comments

JohnnyKay
Posted on December 6th 2012 at 4:35PM

I've got to say that that's an interesting article. There are lots of social media platforms out there these days - so many that it can be a bit bewildering. And just trying to post a single thing on each can take a long time. Let along keeping it fresh!

My thought is that we want to communicate certain messages to our public, no matter where they are. But you can't post the exact same thing on each platform. That makes it look weird to the google spider, and bores your followers too.

The question is whether purely focusing on fresh content is going to win the day, or focusing on a mix of fresh content and wide dissemination of it. Because let's face it, when you're a small company, you don't have as many resources (probably only yourself) with which to do the marketing side. You can either write a new content, or spin the content you've got a bit.

Sort of like the old contest between quality vs quantity.

JJBaybee
Posted on May 6th 2013 at 4:29AM

Hi John,

Thanks for your positive feedback. You're talking perfect sense, especially with respect to limitation of resources. I've been in roles where I was alone, running a multitude of sites, and then others where I had a team of resources to depute to. What I learnt was that your attention is needed either way, whether you are operations + strategy or just the latter.

when approached by community members to help build their social presence, my advice is always to learn the work I do for them so they can sustain without my involvement because I am a believer in organic strategies, the kind we keep human-first approach with. What I mean is, our audiences are not just numbers, rather they represent individuals with feelings, likes, dislikes, opinions. It's important our social presence reflects that across, so quality over quantity any day.

Have a good one.

David Nikolic
Posted on December 7th 2012 at 6:13AM

While social media marketing has turned into one of the cornerstones of many businesses’ marketing campaigns, traditional methods should never be ignored.

JJBaybee
Posted on May 6th 2013 at 4:26AM

Hi David,

Thanks for your comment. I couldn't agree with you more. Although my article's focus was on the selective process we should apply when choosing platforms for social presence, the mix between offline and online is like yin and yang for any outward facing business/product/individual. 

I always tell my audiences that the offline is a prerequisite for the online - also helps us remember we are uman at the end of the day, not binary numbers. 

Please give my new article a read and share your thoughts > http://socialmediatoday.com/jjbaybee/1430796/targeted-advertising