Congratulations! You’ve finally decided to get serious with social media for your school and you’re beginning by searching Google for a social media expert in order to learn about the medium. That’s just what I did when I launched the social media campaign at my school. Be warned however, searching “social media expert” on Google returned 1,560,000 results. Daunting, isn’t it. In my search for knowledge about social media, potential strategies, and even tools to use I began listening on Twitter. Through my “listening” I found it very helpful to check people’s Twitter bios to determine their interests as well as whether I wanted to follow them. I became even more discouraged when it seemed, anecdotally, that every third person identified themselves as a “social media expert.” What follows are my feelings about social media experts and who I found to listen to and trust.
Social Media Expert Definition
Quite simply, be very vary of anybody who boldly classifies themselves as a social media expert. As an aside, I am currently reading Trust Agents: Using the Web to Build Influence, Improve Reputation, and Earn Trust, by Chris Brogan and Julien Smith and briefly paraphrased, while they say one should aspire to become a Trust Agent, you should never describe yourself as one. Great advice and advice I followed as I searched the web for people from whom I could learn. After many months of searching, I determined that a social media expert was a person who:
- Did not identify themselves as a social media expert
- Created meaningful and educational content
- Seemed sincere in their intention to help people learn, and learn from, social media
Who are Social Media Experts
Finally, these are the people, blogs, and podcasts that I listen to and read and I suggest that you do the same as you begin your journey with social media.
Blogs – although most of these blogs are not geared toward independent schools their content and advice can be applied for such use.
- Chris Brogan: http://www.chrisbrogan.com/
- Copyblogger (Brian Clark): http://www.copyblogger.com/
- Problogger: http://www.problogger.net/
- Duct Tape Marketing (John Jantsch): http://www.ducttapemarketing.com/blog/
- edSocialMedia: http://www.edsocialmedia.com/
- Duct Tape Marketing Podcast: http://www.ducttapemarketing.com/blog/category/podcast/
- Marketing Over Coffee: http://www.marketingovercoffee.com/
While these list are not exhaustive they will definitely get you started with social media and while I believe none of them would describe themselves as social media experts they are “doing it right.” Now get listening…