I could subtitle this post: How to Learn Social Media Marketing.
The ecairn blog has a list of the top 150 social media blogs. The list was created by their tool that identifies influencers. I wish it were a graphic and I would pin it on Pinterest. Since it isn’t, go check it out.
Here’s a preview:
#1 is Chris Brogan
#2 is Seth Godin
MarketingProfs is #10.
Peter Shankman and others are on the list. It’s fun to note who I’ve met or heard speak. There are a few I haven’t heard of. I consider many on this list my marketing heroes and people I’ve admired and learned from for many years. I’ve invited or worked on campaigns to get them to speak locally.
At this point I mostly follow my favorites on Twitter. Recently I’ve subscribed to some on Facebook. I don’t spend as much time learning as I did in the beginning because I’m implementing what I’ve learned and come up with.
Many times people think that they can become an expert by attending conferences and reading but at some point you must practice. Once you learn the principles of social media marketing and get to know the tools a lot of the work is creative. You have to think. I wish there was a magic wand but there isn’t. While you can be inspired by seeing what other people do that is successful (I search Google and press releases because most of the time people
write brag about what worked) you have to do it to really learn.
Just remember that even experts are still learning, thinking and trying out ideas.
Someone asked me recently how to learn social media marketing. Here’s my answer:
- Go through this list and add each blog to your reader (like Google Reader)
- Set aside consistent time to read posts they write. You’ll find who you like and learn from the most, so then just concentrate on their blog.
- Comment on the posts you love.
- Really get to know the bloggers you read. Find out when and where they are speaking and try to not only go hear them, but meet them. Get your picture taken with them. This is very motivating and inspiring.
- Follow your favorites on Twitter, subscribe to them on Facebook and Google+ (depending on where you’re most active). Everyone shares slightly differently on each platform, find one or all ways to track your favorite bloggers.
- Look for webinars, recordings (search Google to see if they have podcasts), slides (slideshare) and YouTube videos by your favorite bloggers.
- Practice applying the principles you learn from reading and listening to the bloggers.
As mentioned in the blog post I’m referencing, BlogWorld is a great place to meet several of your social media blogging heroes in one place.
One last thing, there are people who do this as their job and that is all. I’ve never considered it work because I’m passionate about social media marketing. Even after a full day of work I want to come home (ok, most days I work from home as a consultant) and read more, learn more and try different ideas. If you have to make yourself learn this because it would be good for your career you might want to consider a different career. While knowing social media will help you in most careers there are many jobs that don’t require or even discourage it.
To me this is FUN. Not every second, but overall I love it.