Have it on my desk by morning, in quadruplicate

guru logoWhen I worked for a trucking company in 1991, I had to type freight bills on a typewriter on NCR paper (younger folks may have to Google those terms).  The bills were four to seven sheets thick because everybody and their mom got a copy.

I’ve noticed a trend lately that has me concerned with the growing popularity of Social Media: Triplicate or Quadruplicate postings.

This is the elephant in the room.  In my world, often the friends we want to support the most, although enthusiastic, are some of the greater offenders in this area.

We hint, tweet out great articles, with no avail.  Passive aggressive tweeting, although cathartic, results in no behavioral change.

http://twitter.com/#!/YouTooCanBeGuru/status/134121327731818496

Let me apologize now if you are offended by any of the following.  However, I feel compelled to speak my mind on this subject.

I’m going to have to make a choice. There is no way I am going to follow you on Twitter, be your friend on Facebook, like your Page, connect with you on LinkedIN and follow your Company, put you in my G+ circle and +1 your Company page if all of your posts are identical.

You may think I am overreacting.  However, I think I raise valid points.

How I hate thee, let me count the ways.

  1. Noise:   According to KissMetrics, the ideal posting on a Facebook Page is one post every two days whereas on Twitter it is one to four posts per hour.  The expectations of users on Twitter and Facebook are different. What seems normal on Twitter is spam-like on Facebook. If your Page posts too frequently, you may be unliked.  I would venture to say this applies to G+ Pages and LinkedIN Company Pages.
  2. Venue:  Every venue has a niche.  You don’t try to fit The Dave Matthews Band in the House of Blues and you don’t have an up-and-coming singer-songwriter play in Central Park.  Each venue dictates the behavior.  If you’re not sure what behavior is acceptable, then watch what others do and read articles that discuss best practices.
  3. Conversation:  Try to drive the conversation using questions.   The truth is, people have opinions and they love to be consulted about them.  Tweets have a lifespan of about a minute.  G+, LinkedIN, and Facebook Pages all have the luxury of nested comments.  That is a fabulous tool to get some input and generate talk about your company/brand.
  4. Content:  If I am connected to you on LinkedIN, then I expect a certain type of content to be shared there (that is, professional development articles and the like).  Guy Kawasaki, in a seminar in Orange County, said that Facebook is a “photo economy” and Twitter is a “link economy.”  That is to say, photos get a greater response in Facebook and links get the most response on Twitter.
  5. Variety:  Mix up your social media postings.  Maybe post a photo on Facebook and say “Does this make you smile? Why?” once a week. Only post it there. Maybe post a different photo on G+. Save LinkedIN for great articles about your industry that are geared toward professionals.  Post nearly any of that on Twitter, you can even repeat.
  6. Appropriateness:  Hashtags have no business on Facebook and especially not on LinkedIN.  G+ has enabled hashtags to remain linked, however.
  7. Authority:  Double, triple posting tells us that you do not know what you’re doing.  And maybe you don’t.  But is that the image you want to convey?  Social Media is comprised of communities.  Communities have rules.  If you’re not picking up on them, then you’re going to get blocked, ignored, or unfollowed either literally or figuratively.  You’ll loose your authority in your marketplace.

Just because you can do something, doesn’t mean you should.  I could eat pancakes with jalapenos but I don’t think my stomach would appreciate it.  Jalapenos are great on nachos, not on pancakes.

I’d like to challenge you to reevaluate your social media practices. Log into the individual social media sites and unlink all of your accounts. Post natively.  See if your interaction goes up.   I double-dog dare  you.

Further Reading:

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