Last night I went to Ignite Raleigh, an event held at Lincoln Theater for local folks who have an interest in shaping and growing the Triangle. Page Crawford (traffic on NCB17) and Jake Fehling (her husband) emceed, while Ryan Boyles and Tim Arthur hosted the event.
There were 15 speakers who, for the most part, focused on how social media has affected their lives — both personally and professionally.
But, the most thought-provoking thing that happened to me last night was in the 2 minutes right before the whole thing kicked off. And perhaps this is the essence of Ignite Raleigh and what makes participating so rewarding.
The guy beside me says: Scheduling tweets can be compared to sending a cardboard cut-out of yourself to a meetup. Doesn’t this behavior reduce authenticity on social media?
My response was first that this comparison is not sound. A meetup is held at one location, at one point in time. Twitter, like all social media, is constant. It’s always. So, in order to “reach” people at the time they might be viewing their Twitter, Facebook, LinkedIn, or G+ feed, a strategic brand will post at various times throughout the day or week.
And that strategy, plan, and timing all depends on the brand and what they’re trying to achieve.
As for the question of authenticity. Yes, scheduling tweets can influence authenticity. If you, as a person or brand, are scheduling tweets for the sake of it, blindly following some now-known rule that social media is an important part of engaging customers and potential clients — you are more likely to be posting things that are NOT RELEVANT. The goal is to stay relevant.
To be relevant you must:
- know what and/or who you’re talking about
- be referencing something fairly recent or that pertains to a current topic of coversation
- have something unique to say about it
For the last one, I think that Janet Kennedy’s call for us to have fun with social media applies. What you have to say or impart doesn’t have to be the dropping of knowledge bombs, blowing everyone out of the water. It just has to be you. Have fun with it and be yourself. There’s nothing more unique, or relevant, than you.