How Can I Be Social (HCIBS) develops and implements strategies for online presence and smart interaction in Social Networks. Our concepts help you use online technologies in a simple and meaningful way.
Sam Smith: Tell the folks at home, what does it really take to be successful social networking? You know, before you get started, we’re all doing it, right? We’re Facebook ing, we’re Linkedin ing, we’re doing, is it crossing? Or X ing? We’re doing this. We’ve got everything going on, but how do we be successful? How do we have that right mindset?
Gerrit Heijkoop: Well, if you’re talking about the mindset already, we’re already on the right page. But let’s first get there. A lot of people ask questions about social media. How do I get started? What tools do I need to use? What skills do I need to have? Of course that is important, but I think the main point is the right attitude. To understand that, you have to make a difference between the media, and the social. I mean, the media nowadays is Facebook, Twitter, Linkedin. But within two years it might be other platforms. But, the technology might be quite the same.
You interact online in a social group. That social network, that’s where the power comes from. Because as we’re all professionals, as we’re all doing business or as we’re all people, we are very fond of social interaction, social connection, social communication.
In the first place, social networking is fun. It’s just fun to hang out with people. But from a business perspective, this can be very valuable, because it allows you to stay in touch with a lot more people than you would normally do. I think our opening speech, how you just introduced us, is a very great example. We’ve never met in person before, yet we have the feeling that we already know each other for two years.
Gerrit: That was never possible in the age before social media. I guess that is the most powerful impact that these media have. Now, how to be effective there is actually the same as how to be effective in offline social networking. Maybe I should start with a little example.
Sam: You mean, we should be drinking lots of champagne, and getting together and having a good time?
Gerrit: Exactly. Now, say we do that, and we’re going to do that tonight, right? Or at least tomorrow. Say we do that. We get into the bar this afternoon. We go, we both have a drink and I say, “By the way, did you know I have a great company and we sell this wonderful product? And, oh, by the way, this is great, and this is what we do. We’ve got this client, and by the way, this and that.” I keep rambling on like that for two and half hours. How would that make you feel? Exactly. You’d leave. That’s boring. That’s not how we socially behave. Yet, on the other hand, that’s what you see a lot of companies are doing on social media.
They think it’s just another channel. It’s marketing 1.0, where they need to tell on Facebook, need to tell on Linkedin, how great their company is, how great their product is, and all that stuff. That’s not what it’s about. It’s about conversation.
Sam: I agree exactly with what you’re saying. I love that you draw the analogy to how companies behave, because it seems like a lot of companies are pushing messages out into the channels.
Gerrit: That’s what they’ve been used to.
Sam: They might even be crossing the channels, so they’re using the same messages
in each channel, not really recognizing the differences in the audiences in those channels, and the behaviors in the channels.