Guy’s book, The Art of Social Media: Power Tips for Power Users is useful reading for anyone getting started in social media or social selling. While I like to point out that there IS a difference between social media marketing and social selling, this one rule reigns supreme for both.
In my B2B social selling workshops for sales experts, after I explain that they should NEVER put a sales brochure on their LinkedIn profile, the next question I get is, “well, then how often is it OK to promote myself?”
First, let’s differentiate between social media marketing and social selling. This is the difference between focusing on “The Brand” (meaning the company or “big B”), and your personal brand. Your personal brand relates to the person that the buyer trusts to understand their needs. Starting with that, the social media core is different. For the Brand, you are doing a lot more volume, and your core platforms tend to be Twitter, Facebook, Pinterest, Instagram, and YouTube, with a mix of organic and paid to get you prominence. For social selling, as a sales professional, your core social engagement platform is LinkedIn. You then mix in some Twitter, Google+ and Hangouts, with maybe a little bit of Facebook or Pinterest. And you won’t be doing paid advertising or paying to get followers. This is all organic, or as I’d prefer to call it, “authentic”. Because here you aren’t doing mass engagement. You want to connect one-on-one with your buyers and create engagement.
Back to the topic of how much you should promote yourself. According to Guy, don’t be a pimp on social media, meaning, don’t promote yourself more than one time out of 20 times you post. Here is the rest of the mix, adapted from the 4-1-1 rule:
70% of the time you are sharing OPC (Other people’s content)
25% of the time you are sharing original, educational convent that you created
5% you get to promote yourself
Take a moment to check out this excellent interview with Guy Kawasaki to hear more about the Social Media Sins to Avoid.
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