I get asked to speak a lot to HR pros related to social media. Seeing this post from Chris over at RenegadeHR reminded me of the following statement I almost always make to groups when I'm speaking about HR or recruiting and social media:
Why would I say that? Don't some people need a lot of help when it comes to social media strategy and execution? Shouldn't someone be available to help them?
The answer to both those questions is "yes". But a social media "expert" is the last thing those people need to create and execute a sustainable strategy when it comes to social media on behalf of their organizations (note - I'm talking about people in charge of thinking how to use social media within companies/organizations). Here are five quick reasons why a general social media expert won't be able to give you what you need:
1. Because it's easy and what they can do, they'll slam in a centralized social media strategy. Won't work, won't be authentic enough, won't, won't, won't. Your company deserves better.
2. Your real social media strategy is related to the industry you serve or the profession you're in. Most "experts" are generalized and don't know anything about your business. That's why they keep coming back to the centralized strategy. Lame. If you need help, get away from the broad experts and find someone who gets what you do to make money. That expert has a shot, not the generalized guru.
3. The "expert" can't help you recruit participants in your organization to engage via social media. Like Public Enemy once said, it takes a nation of millions to hold us back. You're going to need employees turned writers to make the strategy work. The expert can't help you do that. Only you, or people like you in your company, have the credibility to make that pitch.
4. The "expert" can't teach people to write. Ouch. Probably the toughest thing you'll do in your social strategy is find people internally who can write, because the content/thought has to come from them to be authentic both internally and to the outside world. The expert will be long gone before you figure out this dirty little secret.
5. Socail Media isn't rocket science. You can figure it out, but like any project worth doing, it takes time, dedication and persistance. The expert's engagement with you is going to last about 30-60 days, at which time you'll be left holding some groovy twitter, facebook and blog accounts, but little else.
You deserve better. If you really need help or just don't have time to get it going, call me and I'll help you, or call someone like New Media Services that has a lot of experience in the vertical you serve. That's an authentic voice that understands how hard it's going to be for you. A Chris Brogan wannabe is not going to help you. And I like Chris Brogan...
I'm just sayin'...