Maybe It Should Be Called Unsocial Media #BeTactical

Maybe It Should Be Called ‘Unsocial Media’

Maybe We Should Call It “Unsocial Media”

Too often people using social media as a tool to build an audience to pitch or as a broadcast platform rather than as a relationship tool.  Social media is a powerful tool when used right….but it takes time (sometimes lots of it) to generate that ROI.

5 Signs you’re unsocial and doing it wrong!

  • You’re only posting your own content.
  • You’re sharing content from others but not commenting or replying first – It’s great you’re sharing and it’s better than complete self-promotion but it’s still broadcasting. (Read: Why I Don’t Use Twitter’s Retweet Button by Bridget Willard)
  • It’s all business.  Yes, it is a business account but I not only recommend you post personal content, I recommend it.  There’s a reason business deals are made on the golf course, at the bar or over 2-hour martini lunches (do they even do those anymore?). You learn quite a bit about someone when they’re having fun and relaxed.
  • You don’t respond when spoken to (or you take too long) or acknowledge when someone mentions you. Ignoring people isn’t social. It’s just plain rude.
  • You use social media for cold calling.  This one is prevalent on LinkedIn and Twitter and it’s one of my biggest pet peeves!
Social media isn't supposed to be a broadcast platform. It's supposed to be social! Click To Tweet


Nothing bothers me much more than following someone on Twitter or connecting here and then getting “a buy/download/ attend my….” Tweet or message (and don’t get me started on the automated direct message thing!).

A few weeks back a very unsocial Twitter conversation started with receiving a download request via Tweet within 30 seconds of following a brand:

Why wouldn’t you want fitness combined with personal safety? Download……

My immediate response (and yes, not using their handle first made this public):

Wow! XXXXXX Followed you and secs later you’re asking me to download stuff from your site. .

The remainder of the conversation had me thinking they understood:

They tweeted an apology and stated they thought I might find it a good, useful app…

I do XXXXXX Think it’s a great idea.  builds relationships; Relationships drive biz. 

‘Social’ builds relationships; Relationships drive business. 

Thanks! Didn’t intend on being unsocial, just want to get the word out about our … tech! Downloading is up to you!

Sure thing XXXXXX. Great app for hikers, cyclists too. Getting the word out effectively comes down to how you craft the message.

You’re right! We appreciate the input!

I even helped them by crafting a tweet and sending it out to my audience with their handle and link!

Sadly, a look back at their posts for the day showed a constant unsocial stream of tagging individuals asking them to download their app.  Really?

Needless to say, I deleted my tweet.

Whatever happened to building relationships and being social?

Are we so focused on making a quick buck? Do we see our fans and followers as merely ‘targets’? Are they just a means to an end….money in our pockets?  Are we really that unsocial?  I’m beginning to think we are.

I know they will likely get some to buy their app as a result of the practice, but it’s short-term gains.  Business runs on relationships.  Social media is an incredible tool for building relationships.  Use it right and you’ll see a return on your time and money.  Use it right and you’ll have customers for life.

Do social right and be social!


1.  I will call you out (and unfollow you) if you spam me with a DM or tweet me to buy /download/visit/ attend something of yours simply because I followed you.  I follow because I looked at your profile and liked what I saw.  What you have to offer by way of your tweets (or products/services) interests me.  If you want to sell to me, fine.  Just buy me a drink first.

I get enough direct solicitation via email, direct mail, TV, radio…. I don’t need or want it on Twitter, Facebook or any other social – or is that ‘unsocial’ – channel

2.  If I give you advice, you’re welcome to do with it as you please. Tell me I’m right, then resort to your old ways….UNFOLLOWED.  They obviously had no intention of doing anything different and simply paid me lip service.

14 replies
  1. jpretorious
    jpretorious says:

    “Social Media isn’t supposed to be a broadcast platform. It’s supposed to be #social.” Sister true! It’s amazing to me that people don’t get that. I agree with your advice!

  2. Adam Fout
    Adam Fout says:

    I get these messages all the time. They’re very annoying, but I have to wonder if they work. How many people actually click those links, and how many of those people purchase a product? I hate the method, but I wonder if it’s effective (I feel like it’s not, but who knows).

    • Robert Nissenbaum
      Robert Nissenbaum says:

      Adam, I have had a conversation with a social media company who sent me a DM stating they could help me improve my social media….. When I called them on the auto DM one of the things they mentioned in the conversation was relationship building took too long and not something their clients wanted to wait for, that they preferred using social to sell. It’s what they do and their messages were working so they could care less about annoying those of us in the industry – the only ones getting upset.

  3. Denny McCorkle (@DennyMcCorkle)
    Denny McCorkle (@DennyMcCorkle) says:

    Now the Twitter retweet button gives users the greatest opportunity for engagement. Just choose quote retweet and you have 140 characters to say why you liked someone’s post and/or why others should read it, too.

    Retweet is lazy. Quote retweet is engagement.

    • Robert Nissenbaum
      Robert Nissenbaum says:

      I completely agree Denny that the RT is the lazy way. I much prefer the quote.

      Since I like to schedule out ReTweets over time (it helps me and the original poster by helping them keep the content visible over a longer time frame), that option won’t work. In this case I’ll use a modified (MT) retweet and add a few words in front of the original, still staying under 140 characters. It takes some work but worth it.

      An example of a RT recently with my add in italics:

      _LOVE this post! Lose the vanity metrics!_ RT @DustinWStout “Forget Follower Count: Find Your Most Meaningful Metrics”

      I’ll go a step further and the BEST opportunity for engagement is actually a reply. Not only does it create conversation and better relationship building, if done right it increases exposure for both parties. I’ll try to mix this in with retweets. I have developed a few very strong and profitable relationships this way.

      Thank you for your thoughts Denny.

  4. Clement Lim
    Clement Lim says:

    I agree wholeheartedly. Building relationships are about give and take. I strive to promote and comment on the content of others before sharing my own. I’ve gotten to know quite a few people in my niche doing just that.


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