Friday, March 5, 2010

A Whole Lotta S&M...I mean...SMM

Social Media Marketing! It can be sadistic and it can be masochistic.

I began working as a pretty much full time social marketer this week. I'm not totally new to it, having frequented the social venues of the web for a couple years and having worked as a Jane-of-all-trades at an internet marketing firm for a couple years as well. But boy is it different interacting with people online when you are a business! In one week I have inherited one Twitter personality, developed one new Twitter personality from scratch (I like to call them personalities, but I guess they're really just clients), ditto on these clients' Facebook fan pages, and as the only in-house writer/Englishy sort I've started both of their blogs from scratch. I feel like I've been doing it for a month already. The learning curve is steep. And I'm also a little overwhelmed.

Going into this week I was skeptical -- both about whether I would enjoy this (or whether I could even pull it off) and about whether SMM really does anything at all. I'm not going to become one of those SMM bloggers, but I have to say I have been pleasantly surprised both by the quality of interactions with people and other businesses, and by my own sustained interest in and stamina for continous mini-research-projects and daily posting efforts. I'm still getting the hang of things, for sure, but because of the numbers I think I'm doing something right.

The only drawbacks to this are 1) I am online way too much (at least I am paid for it and building my clients' customer bases in the meantine), and 2) now I'm pretty much tied to Facebook at least until I start grad school and hand over some of the SMM torch flame. I had downgraded Facebook in my personal hierarchy of internet-stuffs to the point where I only checked updates through email. But now I actually have to go there. That part could change though, since I just got Tweetdeck.

Downloading, installing, "syncing," and now just staring at these Tweetdeck feeds was the culmination of this week's efforts. As my triple account management began to get hairy, I broke down and looked for a handy tool. The whole time I just kept thinking how weird this is to be "LinkedIn" (another SMM tool) to everything at once. All my Twitter personalities, including the real me, are there, and Monday morning's project is to get my clients' Facebook pages hooked up to it. I feel a little satisfaction and a little self-loathing (there's the masochism in the "SMM") at the same time as the Tweetdeck updates fade in and out at the top right of my screen, not really distracting me from writing or reading.

A good thing that happened? I found Twitter @robynebyrde messages (ahem...mentions) that I missed! I also figured out that you can make an account to better follow your clicks on and see how many people actually look at your stuff. (I can't use Google Analytics or anything to track those bitties so I'm glad does it for me.)

Of course I have all kinds of philosophical thoughts on these sorts of communication, but I'll save those for later. For now I'm caught up in the reality of using all the thingies, and seeing their measurable results.

(And just look at all my cute new labels. Again, I'm a little grossed out by them, even though I know they mean people will find my blog and read it.)

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