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  • Social “Me”dia Syndrome: A Deadly Epidemic

    That Will Cause Your Brand Building and Business Growth to Suffer

    Could you be suffering from Social “Me”dia Syndrome and not even know it? Unfortunately, this common ailment is causing millions of businesses and individual’s serious pain when it comes to their online brand building and business growth efforts.

    So what is Social “Me”dia Syndrome? It’s when people make 3 common mistakes: They take the word “Social” out of Social Media; they spend too much time focused on the “Me” in Media; and they don’t spend much time participating in their online communities (such as Twitter, Facebook, LinkedIn, and blogs).

    With regards to “time commitment”, a new report conducted and published by Michael A. Stelzner, Founder of SocialMediaExaminer.com, entitled “2010 Social Media Marketing Industry Report: How Marketers Are Using Social Media to Grow Their Business”, shared that people who are just getting started using Social Media only commit about one hour per week to their efforts. And that time commitment is an average that I hear when I talk to people who are struggling with their Social Media programs. But one hour per week is just not enough time to get decent results!

    How much time is enough time?

    So how much time should be allocated (another common question)? Personally, I spend 6-12 hours per week on my Social Media channels. And, in a fairly short period of time, this has generated clients, media interviews, and terrific strategic partnerships for me.

    The report supports that average time commitment, stating: 6+ hours per week was common among people who had been using Social Media for brand and business growth for several months or more, and a significant 85% of all marketers indicated that their Social Media efforts have generated exposure for their businesses. The lesson? If you’re not getting results, but are only spending a few hours per week committed to your efforts that could be why.

    But what about the other 2 common mistakes mentioned earlier: Taking the word “Social” out of Social Media and spending too much time focused on the “Me” in Media? The answer is quite simple: If you get involved in Social Media, but make it all about you, you’ll suffer. Many people simply don’t participate in their online communities, or just post and tweet stuff “all about them”. These are big problems.

    Could it be me?

    People typically follow others on Twitter, “like” their Fan Page, and/or read their blog to “learn” from that person’s expertise. They don’t do these things to constantly get “pitched” to attend events, buy products, hire services, etc. But, unfortunately, many people use their Social Media channels just to pitch, pitch, pitch…

    Could you be suffering from Social “Me”dia Syndrome? Review these 10 questions to find out:

    1. If you have a blog, do you follow other peoples’ blogs and make (good) comments? Or do you  simply expect people to follow your blog?

    2. Do you really participate in the Facebook Fan Pages or Groups you’ve joined? Or do you expect everyone just to flock to yours?

    3. Do you answer questions or provide solutions to people you follow on Twitter?

    4. Do you re-tweet their tweets?

    5. Do you thank people for re-tweeting you or following you?

    6. Do you take the time to participate in things like #FollowFriday #FF on Twitter and recommend tweeps you really like so your followers will then know about them, too?

    7. If you have a Facebook Fan Page, do you actually go there, regularly, and post questions or helpful info that your Fans can respond to or benefit from?

    8. If you have a blog, do you invite Guest Bloggers to write posts and then source them clearly?

    9. Do you reach out to people on LinkedIn, participate in Group Discussions, and offer advice when questions are asked?

    10. On your Facebook Fan Page, do you post interesting questions on the Discussion Board, let your Fans know, encourage them to answer the questions, and/or post new questions?

    If you answered “No” to more than 3 of these questions, you have Social “Me”dia Syndrome. This means your Branding, Marketing, Partnering, Sales and Lead Generation efforts are suffering. And this means your brand building and business growth will continue to suffer!

    The cure? Take 2 aspirin, shift your perspective, reassess your goals and efforts, and jump in more consistently…and selflessly! Chances are, within a short period of time, you’ll be feeling much better about the results you get through Social Media…and you’ll be cured!

    Guest Author:

    Lisa Orrell, The Promote U Guru, is an in-demand Branding Expert, Marketing Consultant, and Business Coach, with over 20-years of experience. She works with small business owners, entrepreneurs, industry experts, entertainers, speakers and authors on their Branding & Positioning, Marketing, PR/Publicity, and Social Media strategies. Lisa has received over 75 national & international awards for Marketing excellence, and has been interviewed by, or written for, countless media, including: NY Times, Wall Street Journal, BNET.com, ABC, MSNBC, NPR, and WomenEntrepeneur.com. For more information about Lisa Orrell, visit: PromoteUGuru.com.

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    Posted in entrepreneurship, Marketing, Personal Branding, PR, Social Media
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    16 comments on “Social “Me”dia Syndrome: A Deadly Epidemic
    1. avatar

      I consistently get more than half of my new traffic on my blog as a result of blog comments I make on other blogs. I get spikes from stubble and dig when I write a pillar post, but the day to day comes from comments.

      My blog is relatively new, less than two months, but has already reached PR4 status and 100+ subscribers. I spend 1 hour a day reading and participating on other people’s blogs.

      So my point… you post is bang on!

      • avatar

        Thanks, Paul!

        Yes, participation is so key, yet where most people fall short. So good for you with your daily dedication. And thanks for sharing your “early stage” success story. It’s important for people who are new to using social media to hear stories like that.

        Cheers to your success!

      • avatar


        My name is actually Darryl. thanks for your compliments. Please remember to always button the collar up all the way with no tie or broach so it look much better. Please? Thank you and God bless.

        Darryl Rutherford, Long Beach, CA

    2. avatar


      When you wear those dress shirt-like blouses, please remember to button the top-button up all the way without a tie or a broach so you’ll look mor glamorous. Please? Thanks and God Bless.

      Darryl Rutherford, Long Beach, CA

    3. avatar
      A Campbell says:

      Good post, Lisa.

      I’m actually quite surprised, though, that a 6 hour time commitment is stated as the lower range of time invested for seeing business returns. I believe that 6-12 hours could be fair if that is how much time you are spending interacting online, but once you add your own writing and brainstorming – the original thought that separates your brand from the pack – surely it would require much more. I would have expected that as the range for a personal online brand, rather than online business branding.

      You are spot on with the “me”dia tag, though, and it’s a nice reminder that providing input to others is, really, the only way to get input back.

      • avatar
        Lisa Orrell says:


        Thank you for the comment and interest. And, yes, I, too, was surprised by the low numbers the special report stated. But social media is such a funny animal…I have clients and colleagues who attracted clients and great opportunities even when they just had 100 Twitter Followers. So, aside from time commitment, I also truly believe it’s a about “quality” of followers versus just hyper-focusing on quantity.

        And I’m sure I speak for many when I say, “I wish I had more hours in a day!” But between working with clients, speaking, life/family, sometimes it’s tough. Many people I know ‘know’ they need to be investing more time but have a tough time finding it.

        Cheers to your on-going success!

    4. avatar
      Julie Spira says:

      Great post, Lisa.

      I spend at least 3-5 hours a day on social media. I know it’s more than most, but as a result of many of the items you mentioned in your post, it has enabled me to become an authoritative source online for my brand.

      Thank you for sharing your recipe with us.

    5. avatar
      Paul Zweben says:

      This is fantastic! I love learning from pros like you.
      Your points are excellent!
      Have a great weekend!
      Paul Zweben

    6. avatar
      yinka olaito says:

      Waoh, this is awesome. many are suffereing from this so called diagnosed disease. This fact is applicable to corporate brands too. I have learnt great lessons from this. Thanx Lisa

    7. avatar
      Cassi Nespor says:

      I’m blushing and giggling. I think I’m guilty of some of this. I need to go invite some guest bloggers soon. Thanks for writing this.

    8. avatar
      Chris Leone says:

      Anyone trying to make a serious dent using social media needs to read and OWN every word you just wrote. The first round over anxious, non-committed businesses is passing and the only ones left standing are the ones investing the serious time. It’s a shame to see so much trepidation over something that can deliver so much, but the opportunity for success is directly correlated to the time you put in. Unless you’re in a very rare situation, this is not going to change!

      Thanks for articulating these points well, Lisa!

    9. avatar
      Lisa Orrell says:

      Thanks, everyone, for the feedback!

      Although most of you find the value in social media and understand the commitment, many don’t. Just the fact you’re commenting here puts you light years ahead of 90% of the people who attend my seminars. I literally see entire rooms full of people who “freak out” with one collective ‘gasp’ when I mention just trying to dedicate one hour/day to their social media efforts (minimum). They get into the whole SM world thinking 1-2 hours per week should yield them amazing results…and are angry when it doesn’t.

      I find that a vast majority of people look at social media as this ‘magic’ bullet that will solve their branding and business building issues…they truly don’t understand the consistent effort it takes to get (on-going) worthwhile results.

    10. avatar


      This is an excellent post — a real must-read for anyone getting started in social media. You articulate these concepts well and provide a clear guide for all of us engaged in social media. This is a checklist I’m hanging by my desk!


    11. avatar

      Fatastic insight …. Thank You

    12. avatar

      This was great advice. I appreciate checklists of tactics for social media efforts. I’m going to share this with my internet marketing class!

    13. avatar

      Lisa, great insights. I’m a fan of brevity and these kinds of articles really help us see where we’re at and why common practices aren’t effective. Rock on!

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