Ten Social Media 'Rules' Explored, Debated
Thanks to all the Emerson College students and everyone else who showed up last night at the Bordy Theater in Boston for the panel on social media. It's nice to see interest in what's going on in the space and its encouraging that people think it's important enough to talk about. Thanks to everyone who came up to speak with me after the panel (including you who loved the Boy Bootie story:-) ). And to all in Twitter Row, watch out. I'm following you now! @SarahHutton, @amyyen, @AmandaMooney, @pamelump, @MariaGarcia, @WillWheeler (sorry if I've missed anyone).
For those who weren't at the event, I was was joined by panelists Zahary Braiker, CEO of Refine + Focus; Todd Defren, founder of SHIFT Communications and Paul Gillen, author and founder of Paul Gillen Communications. We put forth ten blatantly over-dramatic statements about social media and then debated the merits of each. None of the panelists punched each other but we did cover many sides of the issues and that was a good thing for those in attendance and good for the further definition of social media.
The ten statements were:
1. An army of citizens can never duplicate the quality or reliability of a trusted newspaper or magazine.
2. Conventional marketing is irrelevant. You should move your budget and effort to social media marketing as quickly as possible.
3. Done right, a viral marketing campaign can actually achieve greater impact than a conventional mass media campaign.
4. Email will remain the most prevalent and reliable method of online communication for the foreseeable future.
5. No one has figured out a viable business model for social networks or online video.That will make these media unsustainable in the long term.
6.Social networks, blogs and discussion groups are mainly people bitching about companies
and products they don't like.
7. Some negativity is inevitable online. It's not a problem unless it makes the jump to
8. The vast majority of customers aren't using any kind of social media. Don't let all the hype distract you. Focus most of your attention on traditional marketing.
9. Traditional media, especially local, cannot compete with new social networks.
10. You can't measure the return‐on‐investment of social media campaigns. Don't even try!
While there are obviously many shades of gray to these statements and much healthy debate surrounded each, my oversimplified answers were:
7. True to the first part. False to the second part
8. Tough on but true. True. False
What would your answers be?