Day 14 Of
The Thirty Day
Social Media Challenge
If you read yesterday’s post, you know that I got it in just under the wire. But what you might not realize is even though it seemed like I didn’t really have anything to write about, there was still a strategy behind the post.
Now, keep in mind, everything I wrote yesterday was 100% true. I really did scrap the piece I was working on and started over at the 11th hour.
But I could have muddled through the original post and got it done. If I really forced the issue and sat myself down to concentrate, it would have come out just fine.
You’re Well Served
To Have This Quality
I had two reasons for doing what I did with yesterday’s post. First was, of course, that I had nothing else. Second was I had a golden opportunity to be completely, unashamedly and brutally honest with you.
Nothing bonds a reader to a writer more than being completely honest. People respect honesty as much or more than any other quality I can think of. People can really feel it when you have the guts to be open and honest. On the other hand, being dishonest can kill you.
The golden rule of business is this: People do business with others that they know, like and trust. Honesty is the glue that holds all that together.
I believe honesty is always important. But when it comes to marketing and brand building, sometimes honesty can kill you too. In the world of social media, for some strange reason that truly escapes me, people feel they can do and say things they might otherwise have the good sense not to do.
Things move at lightning speed in the Socialverse. The moment you hit that button, the entire world knows about it. And once it’s done it cannot be undone.
Honesty forces us to take a stand. It forces us to pick sides. These are so important to creating great content that will connect.
Yet, honesty can certainly be taken too far. Businesses must maintain a professional demeanor. Last thing you want see on Facebook is pictures of your doctor drunk at a wild party the night before he’s going to do open heart surgery on you.
We’ve seen some bone headed feats of honesty in social media recently. Honesty ended Anthony Weiners career pretty quick. Common sense can go a long way.
In his blog, Mitch Joel, President of Twist Image said “Brands and popular individuals have done a great job of mucking up their reputation via social media.” If you say something too honest and it gets you in trouble, you should probably check out his blog post: How to Recover From Social Media Blunders.
Honesty can also be misunderstood. John Lennon was honest once with his audience that people seemed to care more about The Beatles than they did about Jesus.
The result was a backlash against the band. People thought he meant that The Beatles were better than Jesus. People burned Beatles records or what would be today known as, extremely valuable collector’s items.
If you want to build a lasting relationship with your audience, come out from behind the company image and be honest. Write with an honest voice. But always think it through. If you wouldn’t say it to your grandmther, you probably should think once or twice whether you should say it at all.
Once something is out there, it can’t be made un-out there. Handle with care but don’t be afraid to be you.
Footnote: My good friend whom I’ve already written about, Jason Silverman, talked me into scrapping today’s post to talk about yesterday’s post. He felt talking about honesty in content was an important lesson. So here I am again writing content to be published on a tight deadline. I’ve got another networking event tonight for a Chamber of Commerce and you can bet I’m going to get this done before I head out for that.