Getting Truly SOCIAL With Social Media

Wayne Sutton leading discussion at Social Media Breakfast Raleigh
May 2009

I’m really not quite sure when the term “social media” was coined. I’d have to ask my friend and social media expert, Wayne Sutton. I’ll bet he would know. Irregardless, it’s a term, perhaps a lifestyle even, that I have come to know for the last couple of years and have only recently begun to fully grasp but one that I truly enjoy, especially when there is an opportunity for good conversation, delicious food, and perhaps a “lesson” thrown in for good measure. That’s exactly what I experienced this morning in attending the Social Media Breakfast Raleigh hosted by Auction Direct with discussion led by the aforementioned Wayne Sutton.

For those that don’t quite get what social media is or how best to utilize it, here’s the quick and dirty –

  1. Social Media is a way to connect with friends, family, and now it’s most common use – with business associates and clients.
  2. Social Media encompasses a wide variety of tools from communication sites (i.e. Twitter, Facebook, MySpace) to bookmarking sites (i.e. Stumble Upon, delicious) to photo sharing sites (i.e. Flickr, Photobucket) to video sharing (i.e. You Tube, Vimeo, Viddler) to news (i.e. Google Reader, Digg), etc. I could go on and on.
  3. It will not be going away any time soon.

To understand social media is to just begin using it. But, there are guidelines, there is a certain ettiquette that one must follow when engaging in the practice itself as well as when using individual sites themselves. If you know of tips and tricks and/or best practices, then you are ahead of the game. And if you don’t, then taking part in a social media gathering such as the one I hit up this morning is an excellent resource to keep you in check with your social media use.

Rather than go into detail about what was discussed, I’m going to send you to a couple of places that can teach you a little bit of the ins and outs of social media –

  • Mashable.com – a site all things social media. From the latest news to best practices to interesting articles, this is THE source you definitely want to consult.
  • Twitter Tips – a great resource for learning how to use Twitter effectively. Whether you are using it for your business, nonprofit, or for personal use, this is worth a bookmark (or a “follow”) on its own.
  • Talk Social News – two Triangle (that’s Raleigh/Durham/Chapel Hill for you non-Triangle folks) social media gurus – Wayne Sutton and Kip Bodnar provide a daily video podcast of topics related to social media.

If you’d like to learn more about the ettiquette tips that were discussed at this morning’s breakfast, the American Marketing Association of the Triangle posted this blog post earlier today recapping some specifics. Again, worth the read.

If you have been thinking about entering the mecca that is social media for whatever reason, I encourage to view all of the resources posted here. And after that, if you still have questions or would like some consultation for your business or nonprofit, I’m happy to assist! Visit my website to learn what I can do for you when it comes to “connecting YOU to your public”.

And yes, I threw in a little plug for myself in that last little bit. So what?! I feel pretty comfortable with my own knowledge of the medium so why not give myself a little self-promotion, right?

Smiles,

Lisa 🙂

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