“Social Media Guru”

I just read this great article: How Not to be a Social Media Guru. If you know me personally, you will know how much I detest the term “social media guru”. There may be a few guru’s out there, but unless your name is on par with Chris Brogan,  you are not a guru! Sorry… However, I take no offense to using the term ‘junkie’. So go ahead, call yourself a junkie. I do!

Check out this animated video: NSFW!

From How Not to be a Social Media Guru, here are a few of my favorite excerpts!

Don’t equate prolific use with prolific ability

Just because you have 10,000 followers on Twitter and were on MySpace before Tila Tequila doesn’t mean you’re a social media expert.

Bring some experience to the table

Simple rule: if you have minimal relevant work experience, you should probably not be consulting. In most industries, individuals don’t jump right into ‘consulting‘. They build knowledge and skill through years of experience….

It shouldn’t be any different with social media…. If you wouldn’t hire a CRM consultant who had never touched a piece of CRM software, why would you pay a college student with a blog and no real world work experience to be the face of your company on Facebook?

Your compensation has to be aligned with the tasks you perform

A prospective client may not have accounts on Facebook, Twitter or MySpace but if your social media consulting consists of signing clients up for popular social media services, think carefully about what that’s worth. Hint: it’s not $10,000, or $125/hour.

~Note: I offer these services for free

Don’t call yourself a social media guru

Don’t call yourself a social media guru. Or expert. Or ‘thought leader‘. Instead, describe what it is you do. Examples:

  • I help train businesses on how to use social media tools.
  • I help companies incorporate social media into their marketing campaigns.

Note that a good description will implicitly define the skill level associated with your services. In the examples above, for instance, training businesses to use social media tools obviously requires a different skill set than working with companies to incorporate social media into their marketing campaigns. Needless to say, the former probably requires less skill, experience and strategic know-how than the latter, and the compensation sought for each should reflect that.

~Note: I am a teacher/trainer, but more importantly, I help companies incorporate social media in to their marketing campaigns.

5 Comments Add yours

  1. gypsealeah says:

    Great post Sonya, that “Guru” word drives me crazy too, I fully agree that your compensation needs to be aligned with the services you perform. Setting up a fb page or twitter account is a ridiculous thing to charge for. However teaching someone how to properly implement it is a completely different story. Love your posts! Keeps me thinking.

    1. socialsonya says:

      Thanks Leah. I thought we might agree on this 🙂

  2. Oh my gosh, Sonya, are you swimming in my head again. We have these conversations around here all the time.

    I don’t know of too many deserving individuals that would want to be called a guru at anything. No matter how well we do our jobs, we are only has good as how good we can be tomorrow.

    1. socialsonya says:

      LOL – Keith, I know we agree wholeheartedly on this topic. I also read this the other day… “Social media is an INGREDIENT, not a tactic”. I know you will appreciate and understand that.

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