“I’m so lucky. I just found a way to update to ALL my sites at the same time!”

Filed in Sharisax Is Out There 20 comments

My stomach turns, my eyes roll, and I heave a deep sigh every time I hear people say to me how lucky they are to be able to write the exact same thing on all their sites at exactly the same time . . . so that they can get on with the really important parts of their life.

IMHO [In My Humble Opinion], automatic, robotic, non-deliberate, helter-skelter postings are the bane of the Internet.

On the other hand, the opportunity to truly connect with large numbers of people to share information is paradigm-changing and an essential step in building a better world.

That is why I love social media.

So when I read this blog/discussion comment “There are no bad ways to leverage social media,” I naturally had to disagree. In fact, one of my popular posts,Ā 10 Mistakes Made by Social Media Newbies, lists ten basic cautions.

And here’s another doomed-to-fail strategy sent me by a marketer who doesn’t know social media and wants to farm it out to someone who does. On the surface, that plan certainly could work, but not given the RFP [Request for Proposal] prescriptions. Here is what will not work:

1) The marketer does not want the social media person to talk with the client.

2) The social media person [SMP] is supposed to spend only 8-10 hours a month.

3) In that amount of time, the SMP must “set up, improve, and manage the following profiles: LinkedIn, Facebook, Twitter, and a YouTube channel.”

*NOTE from RFP: “This should include but not be limited to the addition of contacts, photos, videos, groups, fan pages and all necessary structures that allow you to successfully execute on that social media platform. Any and all additional tools you deem necessary to execute a robust social media plan should be part of your setup process with each client.”

4) In that same 10 hours a month, the SMP is also supposed to “create, proof, and send two 500-word e-zine articles and one email blast per month.

5) Oh, did I say that the SMP does not talk to the client?

The big thing that the marketer fails to understand is that social media strategy involves an organizational understanding and mindset that customers can become partners. Social media is not a Push strategy where messages are simply distributed; rather, there must be listening to the cyber discussions,Ā responding to feedback, and sharing a wide variety of information.

PS I got this Direct Message on Twitter from someone whom I had just followed: Let’s be honest; this is an “auto” welcome. But I still appreciate you šŸ™‚ Let me know if I can help in any way.

Here was my response: I LUV your blog, but I hate AUTO anything, even if someone is being “honest.” Auto is a huge turn-off to me šŸ™

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Posted by Shari Weiss   @   11 October 2010
Tags : , , ,
Oct 11, 2010
11:48 am

Appreciative as always for your insights Shari. I confess to being very attracted to the auto-everything since customizing is so time consuming but you’re comments here definitely give me pause for thought.

Author Oct 11, 2010
12:00 pm

Marla, do you know what would be useful for lots of folks? . . . if you shared your “thoughts” on automating and/or just “pushing” messages without engagement. THX for checking in.

Oct 11, 2010
6:18 pm
#3 Glyna Humm :

Shari – Great post! I really don’t like it when I get messages that are so blatantly auto. My favorite is when the sender didn’t even take time to proof read it before they put it in their auto – whatever – like Dear firstname. Social media is supposed to be one to one connections not a reason to avoid people and interactions.

Author Oct 12, 2010
2:39 am

Glyna, not only are those “robots” lazy, but they’re “dumb” as well.

Oct 12, 2010
10:45 am

Hey Shari,

I agree, there has been a slaughter of the social media theory, as more and more people try to jump onto social media sites without putting in the effort that’s required to do it properly. After all, it’s all about relationship building, and no robot can ever do that for you.

I do think that some of the automation abilities we have, such as posting the same content to Twitter as well as Facebook at the same time, is helpful and practical, without crossing the line that so many online marketers cross.

Thanks for your input. Hopefully this message will become clear to others who think that spamming and setting everything on auto-pilot is a good way to do business.

Author Oct 12, 2010
12:24 pm

Kathy, I love your use of the word “slaughter” . . . and unfortunately it has a too-truthful ring to it.
Re: auto posting to a “few” sites — personally, I will sometimes post to LinkedIn and Twitter at the same time, but that is usually the extent of my own joint posting. Usually I frame similar info for different audiences.

Oct 12, 2010
3:42 pm

And the tool to update to ALL your sites at the same time is?

Author Oct 12, 2010
10:40 pm

Glad you asked the question, Michael . . . primarily so I could say that I don’t promote sites/tools like that.
People who want such “casual contact” will have to find resources on their own.

Oct 14, 2010
1:20 pm

I really shy away from the auto thing. Deleted my twitter auto response. I do like aweber. That’s pretty auto, but I don’t think it detracts from the user’s experience.

Oct 14, 2010
10:12 pm

I agree that what makes social media so wonderful is the social aspect, and automating everything detracts from it greatly. In marketing my book, the most fun part has been getting to know so many new and interesting people. I’m glad when they buy the book, but I’m also happy just to chat. It’s not just about sales.

Author Oct 14, 2010
11:44 pm
#11 Shari Weiss :

Jennifer, the same thing that you point out about having fun “getting to know so many new and interesting people” is what I find in so many aspects of social media INCLUDING the opportunity to meet and chat with people who simply find me on this blog. Thanks so much for your comment.

Oct 15, 2010
7:40 pm

I don’t like getting automated stuff anymore than I like telemarketers. And I dislike automated telemarketing, automated tele-polling, and automated tele-bill-collecting harassers. So I get to asking myself, then why do toy with it in my mind, even if I don’t do it. What’s the appeal? Here’s what I think: There is so much press (traditional media, bloggers, pundits, gurus, product sales pages) pushing the many social platforms, that the single entrepreneur is petrified that they are missing the next big thing. But can one person do product creation and all other aspects of a business AND engage with customers and prospects and do attraction marketing on 4 or 5 social media platforms? Effectively? No. Thus begins the yearning for automation so that the work load will melt away and the money will roll in while one sleeps. I can’t keep up. I can’t engage very well. At best I can do it somewhat well on one platform or two. My LinkedIn account has fallen by the wayside as I have engaged more on Facebook. I just can’t do EVERYTHING! There. That’s why people start to do the unthinkable and call 1-800-Automate My Social Media.

Author Oct 15, 2010
8:03 pm
#13 Shari Weiss :

So, Richard, it all comes down to what we want to achieve via social media. For me, I want to learn, share, and engage. So I can “learn” from auto posts, but if no one is really ever there, then I can’t share or engage.
Person to person blog commenting works well for me.
And that is the furthest thing from automatic [except that I get an “automatic” email when a comment comes in].

Oct 16, 2010
3:23 am
#14 Karen Clark :

I agree completely Shari. The only exception is when you have something of a “broadcast” nature such as an event announcement. To me those are Ok to set up as prescheduled posts because people do need reminders and it isn’t conversational in nature. Within limits though!

I do know many businesses would not be online at all if they needed to be fully ‘present’ with their audience, but if they are going to outsource anything at all, there needs to be open communication between the client and the social media consultant.

Author Oct 16, 2010
8:48 am
#15 Shari Weiss :

Thanks, Karen.
Yes, I can see that “broadcasting” announcements as reminders can be a valuable strategy. The problem I see is when one broadcasts too often and is never around to reply to responders, i.e., those people trying to engage with them.

So, as a balance to broadcasting, it’s a good idea to go to places like Facebook, Twitter, and LinkedIn and make a point of checking your friends/clients’ posts and making appropriate comments.

Author Oct 16, 2010
9:53 am
#16 Shari Weiss :

One of my friends suggested that I was too “harsh” with one of the comments, so I asked a fellow social media trainer and here was her response:

Your blog post/comments are spot on. The only thing I have learned though is that for some people using automation (or outsourcing) is the ONLY way they will get online becuase they simply do not have the skill desire or time. I cannot believe how many people I am meeting who are just now using EMAIL for marketing and do not absolutely not want to do Facebook or Twitter or LinkedIn.

So those are the ones who are looking for someone else to do it for them – is it better than nothing? Well I would say no, but from a business perspective it IS – you need to have an online doorway or two or three or two thousand into your business. I hate it too but I have met so many that wont do it at all so I can see why someone would provide that service, there really is a need, because these luddites will be lost in the dust without getting online in some way.

Sigh. I dont think your post was too harsh at all. It’s great to put that out there!

Oct 18, 2010
12:26 pm

Great post Shari – as always.
Like with almost anything, there are 20% of people who do do things right and 80% who superficially heard others doing “something” and than just follow some old habits. 80% of CRM systems are not used right. 80% of advertising is just useless and a waste of money. 80% of sales people never reach quota, 80% of restaurants don’t train their stuff and remain to be mediocre food processors….

80% of businesses use social media as another pipe to get their stiff through that nobody cares. 80% of social media consultants are just mediocre, usually unemployed people trying to make a buck. 80% of what you call SMP (social media people) just have no idea and do what they are tols by some of the 80% managers who also don’t know better.

What does that really mean? A great opportunity for those who are on the 20% side of the world šŸ˜‰


Author Oct 18, 2010
3:49 pm
#18 Shari Weiss :

Axel, I’m going to post this response elsewhere. People need to see it. Thanks for the vote of confidence AND all the training!!

Oct 21, 2010
10:15 am
#19 kiaran :

Hey Shari ditto ditto I M H O lol! I understand that all networks evolve according to the usage of the masses – but i absolutely NEVER read automated direct messages -just not interested at all.

Twitter is largely an announcement board which is fine but facebok I think allows for a lot of potential depth of conections I like to at least read someones INFO page and send a specific message after connecting -hard to do if the goal is simply to hit 5000 connections asap! in my humble opinion!!

Cheers Kiaran

Author Mar 24, 2011
11:36 pm
#20 Shari Weiss :

LinkedIn Group: Social Media Academy – Alumni
Discussion: “I’m so lucky. I just found a way to update to ALL my sites at the same time!”
Many Companies are on the hunt to perfecting their “low-touch” customer model. and are eager beavers to do everything from interactive online apps, to phone operations and now they found a new prey “the social Media customer”

**This comment is not done by the new patent pending application “No-to-lift-a- social finger” – as such application would write in proper English, but without the heart. šŸ˜‰
Posted by Marita Roebkes

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