Making Impact in Social Media, One Thumbs-Up at a Time
Posted on August 8, 2012
The past few weeks I’ve had several opportunities to talk with non-profits and advocacy campaigns about how to juggle the overwhelming opportunities and challenges that social media pose for communicating their stories and engaging new supporters. Typically these organizations, like their for-profit counterparts, are overwhelmed by the large number of social media communities and the nuances of each. Everyone questions how to make an impact.
My social media use goes through cycles. Some days I’m addicted to Twitter and others have more of a Facebook feel to them. Pinterest is reserved for the weekend and I’m just getting the hang of Instagram. I’m still looking for room in my life for Google+ and I know there are dozens of other great communities out there waiting for me to create a password and dive in.
Regardless of the medium I’m favoring, there are a few guidelines I recommend beyond the obvious, “Don’t post something you’ll regret later.” I shared these in a recent video interview produced by my friend Jimmy Minichello (http://www.jimmyminichello.com/) and thus earned my debut online video appearance, possibly one of the most popular social media mediums that I’ve been slow coming around to.
My mantra: Be enlightening, engaging and entertaining.
- Enlightening – offer something new; present a point of view; don’t just join but add to the existing conversation.
- Engaging – social media is just that – social. Open the door to comment, reaction, and even disagreement. Encourage others to continue the conversation.
- Entertaining – come to the table with a sense of humor or perhaps offer eye-catching visuals or video.
How do I measure social media success? When I don’t feel personally overwhelmed by the endeavor but rather feel I’ve had my own knowledge expanded or curiosity sparked. But what I really enjoy is feeling I may have evoked a facial expression (or a Thumbs-Up) on the other end of the Tweet or post.