Are there best practices in Social Media Marketing?
Marketers struggle to come up with answers because Social Media is still a very new and exciting channel that we're all discovering. Some might even debate if you can have best practices in Social Media at this point in time? The debate rages on whether the actual practice is one for the marketing professionals or for the public relations industry.
What are your best practices for Social Media Marketing?
This is the start of a new group writing project to create the most-up-to-date guide to Social Media Marketing Best Practices.
It's really simple to take part:
1. Write a Blog post on your Social Media Marketing Best Practice. I'll challenge you to choose just one (granted, you're free to do whatever you want).
2. Include links to other people who have written similar posts for this Social Media Marketing Best Practices writing project that have caught your attention, or include their insights in your own post (just make sure to give them proper attribution).
3. Link back to this Six Pixels of Separation - The Twist Image Blog. This will help me organize all of the content, it will help spread the word, and if you link back to this Blog and email me, I'll make sure to include - at least - two links back to you. (note: you don't have to do this, but I am trying to keep this as organized as possible).
4. If you use Technorati Tags (or anything like it), please tag your post "social media marketing best practices project".
5. Feel free to tag other people in your post to get their opinion and help spread the project.
The idea would be that each tagged person will then write their own Blog post. I'm sure people will flood each other's comment sections, but the "big win" will be if we get all of us writing our own unique posts. I'll centralize and link to them here.
There is no deadline to write but I have high hopes that this project will go on for some time, develop, morph, adapt and become an organic resource for Marketers today and tomorrow. I'll post aggregated updates and links here on this Blog every so often.
You can also win a prize!
I have a brand new Apple iPod Shuffle (1GB) that I am offering up for the "best" best practice, with a runner-up book prize of, Always Be Testing - The Complete Guide to Google Website Optimizer, by Bryan Eisenberg, John Quarto-vonTivadar and Lisa T. Davis (see below for the updated prize). I will - personally - choose the winners at the end of November 2008.
Here's my Best Practice in Social Media Marketing:
Consistency. Be consistent. In everything that you do. Have a consistent username that you use in all of your channels (mine is mitchjoel). Use the same photo, so that you are recognizable in all of these channels. Use the same name in all of your postings (even when I comment on other Blogs, I use: Mitch Joel - Twist Image). Don't blast out five pieces of content or join three online social networks and fade away. Choose one, stick with it and keep at it. Be more like the tortoise instead of the hare. Slow and steady wins the race. Advertising is the hare and Social Media is the tortoise. If you release a weekly Podcast, don't change your production to every month of so. If you start with a monthly show, you can always step it up to twice-weekly (or weekly) as it grows in audience and popularity. Be consistent.
Now, it's your turn. What's your best practice?
UPDATE: Bryan Eisenberg has offered to supply an authographed copy of his latest book, Always Be Testing. Thanks Bryan!
UPDATE II: Andy Sernovitz has graciously offered up four copies of his book, Word of Mouth Marketing, as well for prizes. Thanks Andy!