Guy Kawasaki tweeted these tips about the twitter elite and Kem Meyer also recently posted them in a blog post. The source of the following rules really originated at the 140 Conference and were more focused on twitter but I think you can apply the principles to any form of social media (twitter, blogging, facebook, etc.) Here are my versions of these principles (or you can view the originals here):
1 - Take Social Media Seriously – People that have gone far with social media and made a significant impact or useful for their effort are constantly connected. Updating and using these social tools daily. Some even consider it a major function of their full time job or an important part of their personal daily routine. If you don’t take it seriously and invest the necessary time, you probably wont find using it rewarding or very effective to draw attention to your cause.
2 – Promote Others More Than Yourself – Some jump into social media to simply use it as a bull horn to self promote. They completely forget about the SOCIAL in social media. Unless you are a celebrity you wont get very far without this principle. One great benefit to engaging in social media is new relationships. If all you do is constantly self promote people will catch on and other leaders that have potential to help you spread your message are more likely to ignore you.
3 – Be Real – Life isn’t always bad and life isn’t always good. If you are authentic on social media people will take notice. Obviously you don’t want to be too transparent especially if you are in the public eye and constantly under a microscope. However, it is important for people to get a glimpse into your life, your emotions, and your passions. Let others celebrate your wins and mourn your losses with you.
4 - Say Thank You- Be appreciative of what others do for you. When people RT on twitter, share things on facebook, encourage you with a quick note on your wall, promo your stuff, or mention you or what you do… thank them! Don’t take it for granted because when people see that it is meaningful for you, it will be even more meaningful for them and they are likely to repeat the behavior. People want to see that you care and a simple thank you can take you far.
5 - Keep It Simple – You don’t need to be a tech wizard or to buy fancy software to successfully engage others using social media. Some handle millions of followers on twitter simply with the web interface and others communicate with thousands on facebook using only their cell phone. If you are just getting started I’d recommend picking only one platform and doing it well before branching out onto others. For churches, facebook is a great place to start.
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