If You Want to Know How to Engage in the Social Conversation… Then Converse!

I just finished a meeting where we were discussing the topic of how best to use Facebook to reach the constituency of an organization. I immediately went in to a spiel about needing to do a presentation on how non-profits use social media to extend their reach, blah, blah, blah… I hate it when I do that. I sound like those corporate marketing hacks.

Anyway, someone at the table said something really profound (thanks Matt), resulting in me having one of those V8 moments. He said "we don't need more information, we need people. The problem isn't going to be solved just because we understand the tool. SOMEONE must use the tool."

It hit me right while I was prattling on about the subject when what I should say, and eventually did say is "it's not about the tools or having a 'person' to use the tool, it's about the conversation and always has been."

I was so wrapped up in the use of the technology that I neglected to mention the most important part of social media is THE SOCIAL CONVERSATION. I posted a comment a couple of days ago on the topic of not 'reading yourself in to social media, you just have to dive in and use it (http://pulsene.ws/bRvF).

My point here is about gaining trust through joining the conversation and being in the middle of it. If we want to extend our reach, touch the lives of people and have them want to read what we're saying, we first have to say it. Contribute to the conversation, and natural selection will determine if others read it.

And even if they don't want to read what you have to say, then at least you've said it. Come on in, the water's warm, and there are plenty of people out there that share similar thoughts and feelings as you, but you'll never know it unless you just get out there, be authentic, transparent, don't sell, and simply say what you have to say. You'd be surprised. I know I was.

Many people want to be a writer.

I would say don't try to be a writer.


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