There seems to be a tendency for people to want to fit in in social media networks. This is natural in any social group, but sometimes it’s more like high school. You want to be re-tweeted by the cool kids. You hang out around the edge of crowds of people and listen before you join in and are loathe to be the one who points out the emperor has no clothes.
But if what you want to do with your social media presence is to be noticed, for your brand to stand out? Then this could be the wrong approach.
Let’s look at Linkedin groups for example. Who hasn’t joined a group (or two, or six) that seems to be populated by self promoters and people who re-share everything the cool kids post? I hear it all the time, “Yeah I joined that one, but either people don’t talk at all or all they talk about is their own business or try to sell me something.” OK, true, but what are you doing to change it? Are YOU posting anything interesting? Asking or answering questions? Offering up information relevant to the group that is useful, timely and fresh?
That my friends is how you stand out in a crowd, and that’s why people will want to talk to you. Because you’re the one person in the network who offers valuable information and doesn’t self promote.
Now let’s look at blogging. If all of your posts are about the latest greatest coolest network or social media tool, odds are good you’ve got a lot of company writing about exactly the same thing. Sure it’s hard not to write about what’s hot, but is there another perspective beyond the mean? Is there another side you could take? Tell people how they can use it instead of how cool it is.
Could you create a post that shows both sides of an issue and mention and link to the bloggers you respect on both sides? Wouldn’t it be lonely if they came from both sides to discuss it on your blog? Sure, there might be a flame or two thrown, but hey, that’s at least interesting. I’m not suggesting you instigate one mind you, baiting people is ugly and just makes you look like an ass, but providing a platform for real discussion? That’s golden.
Go ahead, be the oddball for a change and see if it makes a difference.
Have you read my book yet? “Social Media Success! – Practical advice and real-world examples for social media” is available on Amazon