5 questions for Jay Baer

7 Oct

Bloomington, Indiana-based Jay Baer, a self-described tequila-loving, hype-free social media consultant (his website here) will be joining us, and other members of T-CAAN, November 3rd and 4th to share his knowledge and conduct some workshops around our existing clients. He will also be joining Victoria’s social media enthusiasts at a Tweet-up on the evening of the 3rd.

Here he answers 5 burning questions for the Copeland blog.

Q. Grab your crystal ball.  Where do you think social media is headed?

I believe we’ll end up thinking of social media as primarily a customer retention tool, rather than as a customer acquisition tool. So much of social media is about preaching to the choir, but those dynamics are not yet widely understood.

Q. Many businesses view social media as a lot of upfront investment in platforms that hold the promise of revenue generation. What would you say to them?

Can you generate revenue in social media? Absolutely. But if that’s your goal, you need to very clearly structure your social program to make that a reality, and most companies try to do both revenue generation and loyalty via social – and do both poorly.

Q. Can you describe the ideal person in a business to be managing social media content?

That’s easy. Someone that loves social media. If you don’t love social media, you suck at social media – period. Beyond a passion for sociability, being a good writer with common sense and a broad understanding of the organization is ideal.

Q. There’s still a lot of broadcasting in social media by some very smart people and businesses. Is there a role for it?

There’s a role for it, but it has to be wrapped in a larger context of connectivity and authenticity. You EARN the right to broadcast. I try to live by the 8×1 rule: for every time you talk about yourself in social media, talk about someone else (or another company) and their great work 8 times. If you can adhere to that, you’ll have the well of good will necessary to toot your own horn on occasion.

Q. With the pace that social media is moving at, new is old very fast. Does this relentless progress give us a chance to ever become expert at anything?

It’s very possible to be an expert on how to be social. It’s less possible to be an expert on how to do social, because it moves so fast. That said, one of the areas of social media that is not examined with sufficient diligence is the science side of it. Like digital marketing, there’s an optimal time to tweet; an optimal way to structure a Facebook status update; a better way to tag a YouTube video. It’s knowable, but requires a commitment to testing and a belief that social media success is equal parts art and science. People tell you social media is some kind of unicorn, but it’s really just a very cool horse.

Jay’s new book The Now Revolution, co-authored by Amber Naslund, will be on sale in early 2011.

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2 Responses to “5 questions for Jay Baer”

  1. variedthinking October 7, 2010 at 8:43 am #

    Facebook Is the Main Web Source
    for Product Opinions
    In online social networks, 62% of all messages about products and services are posted via just one platform: Facebook, say Josh Bernoff and Ted Schadler of Forrester Research, authors of Empowered.

  2. dougbrowncreative October 8, 2010 at 4:53 pm #

    Erm…thank you.

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