Social Media Realities: 10 Ideas

An Interview with David Spark

This week I had the opportunity to interview
David Spark of Spark Media Solutions
on the topic of Social Media Realities
for my Azzarello Group monthly member call.  
It was a very informative and entertaining

Download a Podcast of this Interview with David
Download a Podcast of the Q&A with David that followed

                                       TOP 10 IDEAS 
                            DAVID SPARK SHARED WITH US

1.  Content vs. Technology: People get too focused on the technology and the techniques of using social media tools.  You need to first learn what it takes to create the content that causes people to engage in conversation via social media, then worry about the distribution.
2.  Do an Assessment:  You need to do some research.  How are we seen today? Who else is seen in our space? Where and who are the leading voices?  What questions are real people asking relative to our topics?  Know the landscape, and set your goals.

3.  Build an Editorial Plan: Ideas on what you can create are plentiful, but what you should create is far more refined. Creating your editorial strategy requires an assessment of your audience’s goals, your company goals, and your capabilities.  Build an editorial calendar for communicating your message over time.

4.  Maximize Production Costs:  Maximize your production costs.  Don’t ever just have one use for any piece of content or media.  For example, use a 30 minute video to create 3 shorter segments, 2 articles, some short audio clips and a whitepaper/transcript.   Post these elements in multiple places for different audiences.  Reduce your cost, increase your reach.

5.  Participate where it Matters: Now it’s time to get your message out there.  But listening is a big factor.  Where are your topics being discussed? Use tools like technorati, google reader, twitter search and others to automate searching for where your topics are being discussed.  Participate in specific places at the right times.

6.  Be Helpful!  Make sure you have posture of helping vs. one of “look at me”. Social media is personal and it’s important to be adding value if you want to build your credibility and grow your network. Magic Opening Lines: 
                     1.   I am helping solve this problem…
                     2.   I am opening a new opportunity for you…

7.  Grow Revenue Faster:  Companies who join the public discussion in a personal and helpful way have a great advantage to learn about thier customers, and respond quickly and personally.   Back office process are becoming slow and obsolete compared to what companies can accomplish by connecting directly with people.

8.  Build Your Voice:  Share knowledge.  Learn what the most common customer questions are, or the top 5 reasons sales people are not getting business.  Start blogging and providing insight, information and value.  You will create a voice for yourself and your company as long as you are adding value.  Companies: make sure you don’t rely on only one person to do this!

9.   Who are you online?  Personal and Business can co-exist in a good way.  Don’t be afraid of showing who you are to your business contacts.  There are many executives doing this effectively.  But be careful too, if your other interests can damage your personal or company’s Brand keep them separate. Post things on purpose – everything you post is out there forever.

10.  Great Q&A:  The informal discussion with David after the interview covered topics like, how to sequence your social media efforts to grow your business, how to build your voice within and outside your company, which are the most useful tools for sorting through everything you are “listening” to? how much time does it take? and how to manage your Personal Brand online.

Thank you again to David Spark for a great Session!

You can find David at

Download a podcast of the Interview with David
Download a podcast of the Q&A session with David

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