For session #2 of Social Media Pro — our online coaching course for using social media in your business, we’re focusing on optimizing your brand assets.

One of the many ways to do that is to create quality content and post it on the internet.

Video content is increasingly popular. And, various video hosting services have sprung up to support you in making your video content readily available.

The best known site is Google’s YouTube service. But there are others. One, which I’ve personally experienced (and, none too pleasant an experience it was, I assure you!) is Vimeo.

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In my ‘listening post’, I get an alert when certain terms are being cited on blogs. “Vimeo” is one of them. (I have my reasons!)

Why am I telling you all this? Simple. To share three (3) lessons that will ‘teach’ you how this social media stuff really works better than anything less ‘real world’ ever would.

Lesson #1: You Can’t Hide On The Internet

This is true if you’re good. But, it’s especially true if you’re bad. As in ‘bad customer experience’. Why? People talk. And the mechanisms available — online — to do their ‘talking’ is tremendous.

Check it out for yourself: http://boagworld.com/reviews/vimeo and you’ll see an example of the kind of ‘chatter’ that is waiting for any firm — even yours and mine — if we give people a good reason to want to vent.


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Lesson #2: Do NOT P ____ People Off!

In the upper left panel of the above blog, note the number of ‘RE-Tweets’ about this page. This post just went up and in less than a day there are already over 400 re-tweets!!

Now consider this . . . the average social media savvy person has a network online of their contacts. People who are facile with social media are probably pretty well connected. Some people have ‘followers’ that number into the 1,000’s of people.

In just ONE day, this rather toxic post has already been broadcast (retweeted) to a very, very significant number of people.  Probably a couple hundred thousand when you consider these socially connected types each have a network themselves! And, if the source is credible, they tend to retweet the content they receive over and over and over again. Scary, isn’t it?

Lesson #3: If You Listen, You’ll Find Stuff You Can Use

In my listening post, I spotted another related item . . . http://www.pcmag.com/article2/0,2817,2357254,00.asp. Seems Vimeo has a little explaining to do about how it’s doing it’s own business –– in a courtroom!

Oh, it’s a little thing, really — copyright infringements being alleged by EMI — the music industry watchdog for this kind of questionable behavior!

Copyright infringement. Interesting. Because people are claiming Vimeo’s telling them what they can or can’t publish . . . and EMI claims Vimeo is just as culpable in the way Vimeo’s handling their own affairs. Think that’s going to engender ‘goodwill’ from the Vimeo user community?  I’d say the jury is still out on that one!

Question:

Let’s suppose . . . you are the chief counsel for EMI. Would knowing about the kind of comments being made online about the firm you’re trying to build a case against be helpful to you? Would it be hurtful to Vimeo? How would you use this kind of information in court? I don’t have the answers. But they’re certainly worth noting, aren’t they?

Look, Vimeo is not a villanous firm. Ok, maybe some appear to argue they’re eccentric and artsy and all. And, yes . . . they appear to be capricious and arbitrary in how they choose to recognize and respond to violations of their ‘terms and conditions’ clause.

But here’s the lesson I want YOU to get . . . social media has made the masses connected . . . in a way we’ve never seen before!

The media that connects all those minds is a superhighway of thoughts that can either build your brand up or . . . tear it down. I say, ‘either’ because, frankly, there’s really nothing in-between. It’s all or nothing.

Now, do you see why it is so important to be listening? And, once you are . . . to respond in a timely and effective manner!

Personally, I’d be giving “thanks” to Vimeo for providing you with a ‘real world’ example of the power of social media on a business. It’s not always a ‘good’ example that teaches us so well. But, what social media is doing to Vimeo is certainly a ‘powerful’ example, isn’t it?

And please remember this — to make social media work FOR you, you must know what people are saying ABOUT you (as well as putting out your own story).

Which is an excellent segue into what we’re going to be learning about in Session #3 . . . on BLOGGING!

Next session . . . session #3 . . . “Blogging” . . . is an excellent way to make sure _YOU_ control the story about you and what you deem to be important to the people — friends and foes alike — in 2010.

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