Sometimes I have a hard time watching the Social Media space.  I see people, business owners, doing “it” wrong, I cringe and want to say something, but don’t (unless I know them REALLY well).  After all, who am I to judge… ?

When it feels like you’re in the space to wrack up some cash, it just smells bad.

If you were a chef yesterday and an internet guru today, it makes me think twice about doing business with you.   I am not talking about people like Gary Vayhnerchuk, he’s more then proven his abilities and expert status (plus he’s a blast to listen to – go subscrube to his blog).  I am talking about someone you never heard of before, came out of nowhere and was forced to make a job change, so hopped into this space.  For all I know, the chef a brilliant marketing strategist and just kept it secret for decades, which is why I don’t say anything… but… where’s the build, where’s the chat, where’s the relationship building?  Perhaps this is
the “rebranding” of a person that is yet to be completed, but it still smells bad.

CHENGDU, CHINA - DECEMBER 8:  A chef surfs the...

(Image credit: Getty Images via @daylife)

So here’s a little food for thought…

Who are you?  Let people get to know you.   Better yet, get to know yourself.  Is what you’re doing what you really want?  If not, where do you want to be?  If it looks like you’re in it for the money, it won’t work – not in the social media space anyway.  There are ample life and career coaches to help you get in touch with your inner guru and break you out into doing what you are truly passionate about.   Maybe the chef loved being a chef, sharing cooking techniques, helping people eat better, cook with greater skill, etc.. could be a viable avenue for him.  He can use his internet skills to bring real fulfillment to himself and serve people with integrity and passion.

If you do want to make a change, ease into it.  Start small and build.  Let people start seeing you as an expert in a new field in increments instead of tossing on a hat and blasting yourself out of the cannon.  Why?  Because it’s going to take time to build trust.  If you change daily, people are not going to trust you.  If you change slowly, people will begin to recognize you in your new field of choice and have faith you know what you’re doing.  Human nature dictates that people are resistant to change.  Therefore growing your business in a new direction is going to take some time for them to get used to.  Give them that time.  People typically don’t do business with a “jack of all trades”.  If they are investing money and time with you to grow – they want to know you have a particular set of expertise that they can truly count on.

Let’s pretend you run a dog walking business and you are looking to increase clients.  Start sharing stories of experiences you’ve had while walking a bunch of dogs (this could be pretty funny).  Share tips on proper dog care, how to spot exhaustion in your dog or the importance of hydration for an active dog, the best leashes / collars and why.   These are helpful tips that position you as a pro.  It also shows you truly care about what you do for living.  If you’re talking about your dog walking business one day and how to make money online the next, you are going to suffer from  a social media identity crisis.

Marketing in the Social Media space is all about relationship building.  It’s about the subtle sell, sharing your life, your stories so that people have the chance to get to know you and build that trust.  It’s about being helpful.   It’s also about promoting the people in your network, being an authentic cheerleader for those in your space and helping to life them up.  What’s the saying “A wave lifts all ships in the harbor”.  Go there – be that and success will come to you.

Note I said “authentic cheerleader”.  People know when you’re blowing smoke up their skirt.  Cheer on the people you know, the people you trust and be selective about that inner circle of yours.  If you are just making noise, you’ll be ignored.

When you make success about all and not about you, you invite success in.