This week alone I have read at least 5 different articles talking about so-called social media experts, and if you can really call yourself a social media expert in such a new field. Only one of these articles I read made a point worth mentioning here, and that was Michael Gray who pointed out:
So when I read a post titles like 9 Ways your can explode your number of twitter followers and I look at the persons profile, and see 320 followers, half of which are people like robert scoble auto follow bots, I wonder if they have any clue what they are talking about, or are just really good at building a network of reciprocating blind voting friend networks.
I could not agree more with you Michael! Writing good titles is easy, but providing the content to back up the titles is another story. If the content is worthy, you will have followers but even that does not make you a social media expert. I have a friend that has 10 times the number of followers I do on Twitter, but they do not make a dime because of it. Is he more of an expert then me because he has more followers?
I have not asked for any of my followers on Twitter and I have over 500, unlike what I have seen from so many others who have far more followers then me (always begging for more and more followers). Do I want that number to grow? Of course I do, but I want to add people to my network of followers that is going to actually do something for me. Like:
- Will I learn from them?
- Will these guys be able to learn from me?
- Will I be able to network with them?
- Will I be able to monetize?
- Will I be able to sell products to them down the road if they trust me?
Yes to all of the above because it has already happened to me because of Twitter.
I don’t think there is anything wrong with being called an expert – there is a reason for it. One of the biggest mistakes I see people making with social media is not understanding what the specific social networks are best used for. For example – submitting your brand new websites homepage to Digg is not going to do anything for you – besides possibly getting your URL banned! Understanding what each of the social networks are best used for is going to help you more then anything I can ever write here.
Call it whatever you want, but unless you have figured out a way to monetize with your social media “expertise” then please don’t post about it. To me – it really is this simple – Are the social media markeing skills you have doing anything to grow your business and make you (or your business) money?
I have attended several search engine conferences and listened to people who I consider experts, but I have also listened to people at the same conferences that I do not consider experts, and feel they should not be speaking. Again, call it what you want – but as long as it keeps making me money and helping me grow my businesses, I will keep doing it.