Another marketing rant

I believe that Future Ashley will forgive another marketing rant because I know she’ll appreciate the reminder to remain passionate about messaging and branding! On with the rant…

I got a call today from a recruiter. First, she told me that my resume was “neat.” Almost 20 years of professional experience is … neat?! Next, she told me that the “social media mastermind” position she was trying to fill was a part-time, entry-level opportunity.

Let’s be frank: The exec who commissioned — or likely finally agreed to commission — a social media marketing role has little or no understanding of this thing called “social media.” He or she had probably been worn down by others and finally agrees that “social media” is a thing, and it’s here to stay. He or she thinks that hiring a minimum wage student to handle the social media issue for 20 hours a week will solve the issue of the board or share holder or other exec approval. For two or three months, that exec is going to be pretty proud.

The problem with hiring someone who can fog a mirror to handle your social media presence is that’s who you’ve hired to manage your reputation. “Social media” has become a thing that too many businesses don’t or can’t accept. I’ve been saying since 2008: People are already talking about you online. Do you want to participate in and hopefully control the conversation?

Offering minimum wage for a “social media mastermind” is a giant I DON’T CARE ABOUT MY BRAND to your customers. The commissioning exec thinks that he or she has checked that box — Hey, I’ve got a dedicated social media person! Sadly, that minimum wage-earning person gives not a jot for your brand, and has only the experience the commissioning exec thinks you need! I suspect that this particular position is looking for someone to broadcast a simple message, probably several times a week. What that person fails to realize is that social media is a conversation. It’s not enough to broadcast a message. You have to listen, respond, ask, and discuss. That person needs a brain between their two listening ears to craft timely, brand-worthy responses. You cannot simply broadcast your agenda.

Delighting your customers is the best social media strategy. Responding to customers while staying on-message is also a huge factor. Don’t offer minimum wage for your reputation management if you care about your brand or reputation.

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