The Wisdom of Social Media

I first heard Dave Snowden speak at Royal Roads University in Victoria back in the late 90’s.  What he spoke of has stuck with me to this day.  The topic is even more relevant in this time of social media.  It is usually referred to as knowledge management which is the backbone of any social media campaign.

Simply put knowledge management is about taking raw data, converting it into information that can then be used in a knowledgable way and applied with some wisdom.  Too many of the social media plans I have seen lack the wisdom component.

Social media is really a two dimensional communication platform so how it is applied becomes very important.  It is not difficult to alienate a whole segment of potential customers with one wrong word.  This is where the wisdom factor comes in to play.

If you don't understand, say so!
If you don’t understand, say so!

If you are not conveying your message in a well thought out way you are losing business.  I manage too many Twitter accounts for businesses that have no social media plan but feel they need to move into the Twitterverse because they now have a Facebook page.  Those two tools do not a social media plan make.

As a consultant managing a Twitter account I don’t see any reason for me to know the complete in’s and out’s of any clients business.  In fact in many ways the less I know about the business the better.  I have met too many people who assume that everybody knows what they are talking about.  We take our own knowledge level for granted and that just hurts your business.  Me not knowing the particulars of that industry allows me a fresh and open minded perspective of the business.

It is my job to understand how a Twitter account can be beneficial to the business while it is the clients job to provide me with the necessary information to make their Twitter account work.  How well it works affects my reputation which is important to me.  My credibility is attached to my involvement with any company so how they do things is important to me.  If they lack the wisdom to make their knowledge work it reflects back on my job.

A step up is content management.  If a company has contracted with me to manage their Twitter account AND provide content management then many things change.  Now I do need some insight into the business.  Now we are talking targeted tweets.  For that I need to know where and how to find the content.  That is more labour intensive than simply making sure so many tweets go out every day.  As a content manager it becomes more of my responsibility to build a following that contributes to the business outcomes of my client.

The wisdom here is recognizing the quality of your Twitter followers.  There is way more value to someone who is sharing trade information over someone who is sending out a selfie on a daily basis.  Good business Twitter accounts need industry related followers otherwise it is wasted marketing money.

I have dealt with too many young entrepreneurs who are driven by their ideology and I think that is great.  As a young university student I was full of ideology.  It wasn’t until I became more of a seasoned business person that I began to recognize the need of some wisdom to temper that ideology.

As a former government policy analyst I am quite aware of how complicated rules and regulations can be.  That doesn’t mean we bypass them so we can apply our ideology.  One needs the wisdom the intertwine that ideology with the rules of the game.  People need to understand the rules of the game and that should be reflected in your social media PLAN.

Having a Facebook page, a website, a Twitter account, maybe an Instagram and LinkedIn account does not a plan make.  It is demonstrating the wisdom to make all of those tools work together that leads to success.  You may have the data and the information but do you have the knowledge and, more importantly, the wisdom to make it work effectively?  Do you have a plan or just a chest of tools?

As the old adage goes, “fail to plan, plan to fail”.  The collective knowledge of @augmentedtwins represents over fifty years of developing business and regulatory wisdom.  Are you maximizing your social media campaign?


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