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20 Jun 2011

Social Media Strategy & The Natural Force of Integration

Several folks on Twitter inspired this post: Ted Coine, Kevin Vonduuglasittu, Tim Steigert, Peggy Fitzpatrick and Michele Price. Their discussion centered around the merits of Twitter relative to Facebook and other social media sites.

While every social media site has its advantages and disadvantages, the challenge is not deciding where to spend your time but rather how to use them integratively. A military analogy can serve well here.

For instance, Twitter is the Air Force. It’s quick, fast and covers a lot of ground. You can meet more people per hour than on other social media sites. However, they are shallow meetings.

Blogs or blog-like sites that change frequently are Armor. It’s the first solid dose people can get of you. More importantly, its content adapts quickly to attract people repeatedly.

Facebook is the Infantry, the human side. Yes, networking can be frustratingly slow because it’s a friendly domain; many types are there for many different reasons.

LinkedIn is the Heavy Artillery, the business side. Networking is less personal and more business. It allows the display of the full, unvarnished impact of your business efforts in a social setting.

Websites are home; they link all the above forces and allow people to engage for the effort’s central mission.

The Air Force makes initial, quick contact. The Armor advances to exploring expanding that contact more thoroughly. Infantry arrive to solidify the relationship, and the Heavy Artillery follows later to show that this is business. Finally, if all of it works, people accept an invitation home to engage.

Every situation is different, and it will likely require different sequencing and coordinating. No military can succeed using only one branch of its force; therefore, no outreach effort can succeed using only one avenue. Integration is a natural force; look at nature.

3 Responses

  1. Oh Mike did you seriously think that some of us did not understand the integration piece because we were spouting off about how we didn’t facebook so slow? A couple of people in that conversation have actually created campaign for Disney, Pixar, Macy’s, as well as smaller lessor know companies.

    I love how you saw an opportunity to find a conversation that allowed you to position your thoughts on this topic, that was creative.

    One of the nuances of social media is to allow for the people in the space to be human. When you have made connections and built relationships with people over time- some of us 3-4 years-just like at any water cooler situation you will spout off and verbalize an annoyance.

    You would also be surprised that many of us have taken our relationships off twitter and just use twitter to have that chat between tasks.

    I see social media being a much more complicated place when you are into a relationship within time like a marriage, there are times you will be in deep conversation, other times bantering, then again making plans and even shifting into parenting role. All valuable, all different and all part of the complexity of relationships.

    1. I’m sorry you felt that way, Michele. My intention was exactly the opposite of your interpretation. I actually thought I was trying to find a creative way to express your thoughts on integration. That seemed to be what you and the others were saying. I like military history and strategy and often use them to express integrative concepts. I saw an opportunity and expressed it in Twitter. A couple folks really liked it and found it helpful, so I thought it might make a good post.

      You’re right. The concept of integrative social media is not new; however, trying to express this in a way that crystallizes it for many is challenging. It seemed to work, so I thought I would elaborate. Regardless, you inspired me and I thank you. I also appreciate you visiting my blog and leaving your comment.

  2. Funny I thought my comment spoke to the intention of our twitter conversation. I see you found a creative way to express it so your audience might have the thoughts solidify for them. I paid you that compliment.

    I also expressed my opinion on where I see the gap for many when looking at conversations happening in twitter.

    Glad you are inspired and trust you will realize that there was a compliment inside the comment left you.

    Besides a difference of opinion is what sparks dialogue in the first place. You will notice my depth of attention is what brought me here to comment. Not seeing the others follow suit. ;))

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