SOCIAL MEDIA – WHAT CAN IT DO FOR ME?

Nancy Myrland All Posts, Networking, Social Media 16 Comments

Myrland Marketing Moment

A recent Myrland Marketing Moment I shared was:

Remember that Social Media use is a little bit about you, and A LOT about everyone else.

It’s true.  These are called Social Media, and we do Social Networking on them. We’re here to spread the good word, which isn’t always ours.  We’re here to communicate, connect and sometimes even collaborate if we find relationships that make sense to us.

When we think of it in terms of traditional networking, it makes even more sense.  What would you do if I walked up to you at a Business After Hours, a Chamber Membership Marketing Council meeting or a Goodwill Commercial Services board meeting, said hi, then immediately launched in to why I am so wonderful, why you should hire me to set your marketing world on fire, why you should attend the event I’m hosting next week, why I just wrote the best blog post, on and on and on?

Let me see if I can answer that for you.  Tell me if I’m right.  You would think I am a huge bore, that I’m very self-centered, that I could care less about actually meeting and, heaven forbid, developing a relationship with you at this networking meeting?  Am I getting warm?

It’s like that with Social Media.  If we approach them, and the  networking that goes on within them, as being largely about others, then we are on the right track.  How do we that?

  • Share what others have to say.  When someone Tweets, updates Facebook or LinkedIn, or writes something that you like, or you think others would like, share it with your network.
  • When someone is just getting started, reach out your virtual hand or arms and pull them along with you.  Greet them, make them feel welcome in this huge space, and mentor them if need be.
  • Write something that will help educate others.  There are so many new developments, or new ways to look at what’s been fact for a long time, that the opportunities here are unlimited.
  • When you see two or three people you think might like each other, introduce them to each other on whatever site you are using.
  • Comment on something they’ve said that you agree with, or even if you want to share another perspective.
  • Refer people or tools when you see someone ask about them.

When we approach all networking, virtual or otherwise, with this mindset about helping others, we will be much more memorable as a result.  Don’t you remember people who share great information when they’ve also focused their attention on others?  Doesn’t it make them a more complete person in your mind?  Doesn’t it make you want to share their information with others because they’ve modeled that same behavior?

Do you see what all of this is leading to?  In the process of focusing largely on others, people are then more receptive to the messages you send about you, and what you’re working on.  You’ve helped others, but made yourself more memorable in the process.

Remember, ask NOT what Social Media can do for you.  Ask what you can do for OTHERS.


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  • Nancy, So much of business is networking, relationship building and that starts with thinking about others, helping them if you can. As a solo PR, I reply to media requests that may or may not help my clients in the short run, but over time.. anything can happen. I love it when I can RT something good, or post a helpful or funny comment that makes someone think or laugh, or think and laugh. You actually may be more “memorable” for going on and on about yourself, but not in a good way. Much better to be thought of as the person who listens, helps others and not just themselves. FWIW.

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  • Gini Dietrich

    This is what we call Type OO: Output Only! Not only would you think the person a bore, you’d be searching for someone to save you!!

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  • Hi Davina, thank you. Yes, memorable in a less-than-positive way is something to keep in mind, isn’t it? It really depends on what we are doing in these spaces, and what part or parts of ourselves we want to share with others. Thanks for stopping by!

  • Gini, isn’t that the truth! I’ll make you a deal…if I ever see that happening to you, I’ll save you, and vice versa, okay? Thanks for always being so supportive!

  • John Myrland

    Good job, baby! Nice plug for the chamber, too!!

  • Thanks for YOUR support! You had to know I’d mention the Chamber! 🙂

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  • Nancy, while putting together a collaborative post called “10 Things to Ask a Social Media Intern Before You Hire Them,” I searched “social media help others” and your post came up.

    Awesome points you’ve made. Before I’ll follow anyone on Twitter, I check out their profile and look for a healthy smattering of “@” and “RT” Tweets. If all I see is a page of Tweets talking into thin air, I’m usually not interested.

    Once in a great while, I’ll follow someone who’s not using social media as you’ve described. For example, I follow Larry Winget because he speaks out on topics of interest to me. But really? Social media is all about networking. If you’re not using it for that, you probably won’t get too far.

    Michelle Quillin for New England Multimedia

  • Thanks so much for stopping by, Michelle, and for sharing your practice of checking out others’ profiles. I hope you come visit again!

  • “Thanks …for sharing your practice of checking out others’ profiles.”

    Exactly why I followed you, Nancy! And with all the people you’re following and being followed by, I’m amazed that you’re such a good social media networker — great job!

    Michelle Quillin for New England Multimedia

  • I love the connection, “Ask NOT what IT can do…” So many new to social media look at me cross-eyed when I tell them of social media’s virtues, and how it works best when we help others, promote them, etc. Yet others have big smiles, as if this was the approach we’ve all been waiting for.

    The gist of social media – despite the un-natural networking via our keyboards – is about learning to be human again.

    As always, thanks for the great words, Nancy.

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