Can you handle the truth about social media hype?

Do you remember Jack Nicholson’s character in the 1992 movie, A Few Good Men, Colonel Jessep, delivering that powerful line “You can’t handle the truth”? Well, I suspect for some of you today’s post will carry a similar challenge as it relates to a hidden truth about success and social media.  That truth is brought to you courtesy of Herb Schaffner, my first editor at McGraw-Hill.  Herb points out, in a recent blog post, that social media influence is not the only predictor of success.

Responding to a recent article in Businessweek magazine, entitled “How to Write a Bestselling Business Book, Herb shares the following keen insights , “Yes, social media traffic and influence are important—but with limitations. With so many experts—including me—evangelizing online promotion and smart content marketing, authors can’t be blamed for thinking this is the whole ballgame now. Blogs, Twitter, Facebook, and Pininterest are very important for many reasons, but only in rare cases does a big Klout score really drive book sales. My advice: Authors, get your Klout score up, but keep your expectations modest–and do a social media reality check against your business or book goals.”

In response to Herb’s challenge to do a “social media reality check JoAnneh Nagler, author of the upcoming book The Debt-Free Spending Plan, notes
“… a handful of people in America have used it to make it big and now we’re all a bit chained to it for the same reason… it’s a great tool. … Sure, social networking feels URGENT, but what’s IMPORTANT, to me, is the writing. I think we’ve put the cart before the horse a bit lately and we’re hyping the online presence more than the content of what we have to offer. If it’s about being of service (which I believe it is), then our message has to be the first priority.”

WOW!  So where is your content and where is your hype?  In today’s world it takes both!  But, in reality, that has always been the truth.  Can you handle it?

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Joseph A. Michelli, Ph.D. is a professional speaker and chief experience officer at The Michelli Experience. A New York Times #1 bestselling author, Dr. Michelli and his team consult with some of the world’s best customer experience companies.

Follow on Twitter: @josephmichelli

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