More than once during my stay in Austin last week, I had someone tell me that they were worried that blogs and social media had passed them by. They feared that everyone they encountered knew more about these tools than they did, which made them helplessly behind.
I made two points in response:
1 - The people at SXSW do NOT represent the majority. In face I would wager they are still closer to the top one percent. We are still the outliers, most people and companies have no idea what social media is about, and many still do not care.
2 - These people were at SXSW because they were curious. They were interested in learning more about social media and how it could improve their marketing efforts and grow their businesses. Being curious about how to use these tools correctly is much more important than how you use the tools. If you are curious, the rest will probably take care of itself.
Case in point, a few months ago, I didn't get much value from Twitter. I just didn't see the value in the service. But I remained curious because I saw how well others were using it. So I kept experimenting and finally changed my usage of the site, and I now find Twitter to be incredibly valuable to me.
Using these tools correctly isn't what counts, remaining curious about the correct way to use these tools is more important. I got to talk to several people at Dell last week, and whenever we discussed their strategy online and how well the company was doing in utilizing social media to communicate with its current and potential customers, they were always quick to add that 'we still have so much to learn'.
As we all do. A sense of curiosity serves you well in these times.
Pic via Flickr user shibby_h
Tags:The Viral Garden, Marketing
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