I just came across Mr.Lee Odden’s blog posted on December 1st 2010. His blog intrigues me with the headline asking “Will the Real Social Media PR Consultant Please Stand Up?”
The author begins with his search about ‘social media consultant’ on Google and found a huge number of related results. The title seems to be the next coolest job due to the boom of social media age. However, everyone nowadays seems to be able to name themselves being a social media guru. Is it that easy to maneuver social media?
So what a real social media consultant should be? Mr.Odden says that a real social media consultant needs to “know more than how to setup a Twitter or Facebook account. It means knowing customers social behaviors and preferences, social technologies, explicit and implicit social network rules and how to measure outcomes.” I agree with him with no doubt.
I feel a tint of sarcasm reading the blog. Now that social media become a boom of the decade, it seems every business has to jump in ‘because everybody else is doing so’. In Thailand, many companies just hire a young-blood officer to deal with social media without having proper strategic planning.Having a big number of followers in social media doesn’t mean your business would generate a lot of income; and it doesn’t mean everyone who follows you loves your brand.
Your presense in social media is your online reputation, not e-commerce. Pushing sales through social media too much put people off and playing around won’t do you good either.When you decide to include social media as one of your channels for marketing communications, think of what you want to say to the public and what you would like the public to think of you. There’s a Thai saying says that ‘Your own words master who you are’. The ability to master communications on social network is a point that discriminates Social Media consultants from regular users.
Social media is like a cluster of villages and each village has its own culture. In the social media world, there aren’t just Facebook and twitter. You have to know your locals and what’s going on in a particular market. Otherwise, hire a guide.
I’m a PR practitioner who has been in the digital world for 10 years yet I don’t want to call myself a real social media consultant. To me, social media is a vast universe that changes rapidly. Well..I know some particular areas of the universe. Perhaps, I could call myself a social media local guide?