Ten Things I’ve Learned in Social Media

10. A little monkey can hit Send. And look adorable doing it. If that’s all I’m doing, I should be replaced. (Please get the little monkey a hat!)

9. The metrics that show failure are the most valuable.

8. Social media evangelism is hucksterism worthy of a snake oil wagon. Let people adopt what they want to when they want to.

7. Writing for social media is a craft and a discipline. Good content isn’t delivered in tanker trucks.

6. See this photo? Its me on a frozen lake in the Yukon. I posted it and my friends responded and I did a Facebook Live video and I was connected to California, Carolina, and Kolkata. It has always been possible to be alone in a crowd. Now the opposite can also happen.

Image for post
Image for post

5. 5 A profile picture should show people what you look like.

5. I once chatted for three hours from a company Twitter account with a single mom whose fridge broke down in a heat wave. She had her toddler on her back, and our truck replacing her newly purchased fridge was late. I talked to her until the replacement fridge arrived. I did it so executives could scoff and say, “That’s not scalable.”

4. I’ve groan to enjoy puns in short writing. Like this:

Twitter’s brevity invites wordplay into its small space, an origami sheet willing to stick its neck out to become a swan.

3. Twitter is Spanish; Facebook is French; LinkedIn is German; Instagram is Italian. If someone has not practiced the language, throwing them up there and expecting them to sound like a native is not just risky. It’s offensive to fluent speakers.

2. Paying to be liked is just as sad as it sounds.

That’s when it begins.

Jeff Elder has led social media for a Fortune 50 company, a hot startup, a top 10 website, and his fat Calico cat, Talker.

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Former WSJ reporter and syndicated columnist working in the blogosphere. Once sold books to Johnny Cash. My Medium post about that was praised by Paris Review.

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