My interview with Tamar Weinberg, Author of The New Community Rules: Marketing on the Social Web and works for Mashable
Tell me a bit about what you do?
I wear a lot of hats: social media strategy, community management, ad sales, customer support, writing, you name it. I do it.
What is your Social Style? Do you use Humor, Straightforward, etc.
Interesting question. I mostly am straightforward, especially as it’s hard to convey emotion (e.g sarcasm) in 140 character tweets. In longer form (e.g. my social media and digital marketing blog on Techipedia.com), I try to apply it to personal experience and often use storytelling as a way to illustrate my point.
Tell me about your Twitter handle,
I was lucky. @tamar is me!
What is your favorite social networking site?
I’d say Facebook, mostly due to its current audience. I live in a social sphere every day, but given that my peers and colleagues are always promoting the same marketing stuff across Twitter, Google+, and even Pinterest, I have to say Facebook — given its mass appeal, it gives me a glimpse into the lives of close friends and family who aren’t nearby.
What makes you stand out on FB, Twitter, or Linkedin, or any social site that you use?
I don’t know if I personally necessarily want to stand out, but if someone wants to, they should offer content of value and be engaging.
What do you like most about social media?
I love that we can communicate with people who are located anywhere in the world. Geography doesn’t matter anymore.
What do you like least about social media?
It’s all consuming. You’re on call all the time. A few years ago, you could take a breather without it being a risk to your company. Now, you need eyes and ears on the social media space at all hours.
If there was one area that you think you need help in while using social media what would that be?
Just seeing more creative implementations of newer campaigns on older platforms would be nice. The big issue right now that businesses face is saturation; in 2007, Twitter was the network of choice because nobody was using it. Businesses there early were the shining stars. In 2012, going to Twitter as a business who just started in social media is almost a complete waste of time. I’d love to see how recent businesses joined and really successfully and organically built a foundation that earned them respect. I know this would help a lot of businesses get inspired.
What does Branding mean to you?
Branding could mean a lot of things. I recently worked with a company that had a completely different definition of branding than I’d have thought possible. For me, it’s about being visible, known, and memorable. It’s something you need to work toward every single day.
What advice would you give to others trying to get started and noticed through these social media platforms?
Work your butt off. And read The New Community Rules: Marketing on the Social Web.
What is your favorite blog?
I’d say Mashable, though Mashable is no longer a blog but a true tech news destination. Also, I’m biased as I’ve been working for Mashable for 4+ years.
What is your favorite social media tool to use?
Can I say email? It’s true. But email is all the more powerful thanks to Rapportive, the most amazing Gmail plugin ever.
Do you think the number of followers or fans matter?
In a way, yes. If I’m working a customer service issue and I see a guy with 0 followers making irrational complaints about a business practice, it won’t hold as much weight as a complaint from someone who has 5000 followers, is truly engaged, and is (usually) giving constructive feedback.
Despite fans or followers, every complaint is valid. But trends show that those with fewer followers want to be heard the loudest, yet don’t care to participate in the conversation. In social media, it’s about you AND me, not just you, and if you’re coming to the medium merely to complain and not work toward a solution together, you won’t find many people who will take you seriously.
Also, it looks really bad to be following 2000 and only have 200 followers. Chances are, those 200 people auto-followed you back. Most of those accounts are merely there to boost numbers but don’t care about true quality conversations. They exist.
To me, the biggest factors are age of an account, number of tweets, and type of engagement. For example, if your Twitter account was just created, I wonder what purpose it’s for. If your Twitter account is only engaged in contests and is mostly dormant when contests aren’t running, it shows. All of this weighs into the type and quality of interactions you’ll get from other people. Today, I got a tweet from some guy who demanded that I follow him. I looked at his Twitter feed and he asked a bunch of other prominent folks the same thing. Like I said in my earlier response, offer value and engage — people will take notice.
What inspires you?
I’m inspired by great ideas and awesome people. It’s not hard to inspire me.