What Is A Social Media Expert?

Social Media

What is a social media expert? Some will say… if you have $500 dollars and an hour of your time, they will be more than happy to tell you what they do. I honestly don’t have a definite answer for this question, as I think of everyone as astronauts in social media. Social media is such a fairly new technology that has become so popular almost to encapsulate a generation, think of the space race… could you imagine sending the Apollo mission up only to find someone had declared himself  “The King Of The Moon?”

Mashable yesterday reported that there are over 15,740 self-proclaimed “Social Media Experts” on Twitter…While the article caused some controversy among the twitter and social media community, I just know what I have experience with 12 year olds and heck even my dog @facebark is declaring himself a “social media expert”.

In an article by the Broward Palm Beach News “What is a social media expert anyways? there was a quote that hit close to home for me, as I have been “self-employed” in social media for almost a year now and find it’s hard for companies to weed past the snake oil of some of the declared social media experts or have been burned in the past making it tougher to gain their trust again in social media.

“Just don’t take someone’s business card or word as proof of their status. There is some great social media talent right here in Florida. Genuine ones, not fakers.” – Murray Izenwasser

In the words of Neil Diamond… “Hell yeah there is…” so much great talent out there . People that are good with people, these jobs that are taken up by some of these “experts or gurus” that are more focused on making money and a name for themselves than the companies or public they are working for.

When it all boils down to it, these “experts” can sure talk a lot but when it comes to actually having a personable conversation with others… most people would rather just talk to a robot then get flooded with advertisements and pitches.

Remember: Social Media is social… connecting is important. If you can’t be personable get off my timeline. Same goes for companies, connecting with your customers is key. I love companies such as Sephora and Express on twitter because they will actually talk with me with if I like their product or have questions. That personal service makes me feel warm and fuzzy, will I shop there again? You bet your 140 characters I will.

Now, not all declared “experts” are bad…. the proof is really in the pudding, make sure that if they say they are an expert they can show more than tell you about what they have done or can do. Before I buy I product, I always make sure there’s good feedback and loyalty about a product than listening to an advertisement. Do your research…

Something learned from Vanilla Ice… just stop, collaborate and listen. Many people have their own opinion on this topic, life is really too short to be arguing over what’s the actual definition of an expert is. Just trust your gut…. if it looks like a social media expert and barks like a dog… RUN.

(Especially if it’s @facebark, he’s extremely gassy.)

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10 comments on “What Is A Social Media Expert?
  1. Pingback: bookmarking » Blog Archive » Destructo Deviations - What is A Social Media Expert?

  2. I would love to see twitters new RT button hooked up to a device that actually punches any fake Social Media experts in the face when it is used. I don't consider myself a Social Media Expert – I consider the experts to be those who have been in the game for years and have made a significant impact on the Social Web.

    A Professor of mine once said It takes 10 years to become an actual expert. Social Media has been around for a few years now but I highly doubt these self proclaimed experts have been using it for longer than a few weeks. Finally, I completely agree with you – People cannot be an Expert unless they have proof. I'm not trying to get all Law & Order or CSI with this comment but if there isn't any evidence then you dont have a case.

    The term Social Media Expert has the same value as being called a Social Media Guru – Zilch. Great post! Keep it coming…always thought/rant provoking.

  3. I don’t mind if someone calls themself an expert. What bugs me is when they jump into social media like it’s a means to an end. Granted, it works well as such, but not when approached that way. Like you said, social media is social. Anyone venturing into this fronteer needs to realize they’re not making customers, they’re making friends. If they’re out to “maximize their customer base” they’re not an expert. If they wanna hang out with their audience, then they’ve got something going on.

  4. As they say, the proof is in the pudding when it comes to these so called "social media experts." Great info and words to live by. Just had to say, I can't believe we actually learned something from Vanilla Ice… that's a riot! Thanks for the chuckle.

  5. This is one of the best ways for an organic grass-roots campaign to be started in cyberspace. Word of Tweet seems to have more lasting impact than a commercial. I know I pay more attention to them because I can view them repeatedly on MY timetable. Not on the TV's.

    As far as an individual being a SME, I try to imagine the person backing up their words. Case in point, when I think of Bruce's Yams, I can clearly imagine you loading an entire shopping cart full of their cans. If I can believe that a SME would do such a thing as an individual, then it lends credibility. Even though I don't know you, I am compelled to trust your judgment based on similar interests. Some could suggest that it is a whole "You remind me of a friend" sort of mindset.

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