A Rant about Rants

What’s with all the meanness online lately? I feel like every time I turn around, someone is posting something about fake “social media experts.” I’m not going to point any fingers (though I will give you this). Many of these posts seem to be inspired by this recent viral video, depicting an exchange between an overly uneducated “client” and her “social media guru.”

Every now and then, the blogosphere/echo chamber erupts with invective towards “snake oil salesmen” diguised as social media consultants. There are a few (a very few) good insights in some of these posts. But mostly they’re filled with a lot of finger pointing, a lot of “your doing it wrong,” and lot of over-the-top, in-your-face, sensationalistic attacks. The unspoken, yet very obvious goal of most of these posts (not all of them), is to put others down so the writer can appear to be the very expert s/he disdains.

Let me just say this: Yawn.

As our parents told us when we were kids, “If you don’t have something nice to say…” Seriously, bloggers. How about saying something constructive? How about showcasing something you did that worked, since that’s what you hold up so high as proof of being an “expert.”

The truth of the matter is that the tools used in social media are, well, relatively easy to learn and to use. Social technologies have become so streamlined and so cross-platform integrated that it’s usually takes just a few clicks to participate. And, if an organization has the human resources to mount a social media campaign, then they should do it. But that means making a commitment, not just throwing some junior employee at it.

What’s hard–across the board in business–is strategy. Sure, some people working in social media don’t get strategy. But hey, so do some people in all sectors of the marketing industry. So do some people in many sectors of the business world. Heck, there are even some CEOs that don’t get strategy. Strategy means figuring out who you need to communicate with and how you’re going to communicate with them. Strategy means really getting into the minds of your audiences, and figuring out how your organization will be working with them to mutually meet your goals.

And once that’s nailed down, you can figure out what tools you will use, whether it’s social media or not.


  1. Dave

    Congratulations on your move. I wish you well.

  2. Daniel

    It was a controlled rant. Nothing too over the top.

  3. Mario Armstrong

    Daniel, it points are dead on target! I too am tired of seeing the tweets flying around about bloggers getting tired of “social media experts”! As my Mom would say “If you aren’t part of the solution, then you’re part of the problem”!

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