My tweet kicked off a fierce twitter debate and resulted in three, yes ladies and gents, count it; 1, 2, 3 expert opinions, all published on Adviser Lounge, the place where financial advisers lounge about and talk shop (clue’s in the name, sort of).
Here’s a thing that really got me thinking and the think that I got to thinking was this: Talent is for losers.
It was thanks to Jon Pittham’s excellent article "Social media professionals: worth their weight or a waste of time?" in which he referred to those of us who were involved in the Yea or Nay debate regarding social media:
When I was young (relax, this’ll be a very short “when I was young" story, bear with me please).
When I was young, I was often called "a natural" at a certain sport. Heard it all the time. "You're a natural, you have so much talent" Guess what? I never properly excelled at said sport and quit in my late teens. Looking back now, I realise it was because I began to believe that talent made me good and therefore there was no need for hard work. Then I came up against someone who had worked harder and probably had less talent, and I lost.
Now let’s return to social media and the web. Whatever criteria you want to look at, the Banker’s Umbrella is a success. In addition to my mother, it gets about 30 000 unique readers a month. That’s not too shabby for a former, used to be fat, 40 something private banker who has no talent at this internet stuff.
I was “talented” in one thing and became a failure. I’m a complete amateur in the other and became a success. Why?
Simple answer: Because I knew I was useless from the start, I needed to learn this thing called social media and I had to work my silk boxer adorned derierre to become good. And I did.
Or perhaps I just got lucky?
Luck has nothing to do with it. Now, If you’ve read this far, I have a confession to make. You are about to be told a secret: What seems random is not. The Banker’s Umbrella (sorry to disappoint many) is not just my random musings. It is structured, carefully planned and executed with the help of technical tools.
But what about the banter? Sure, I discuss openly on social media, but everything I discuss is based on a very strict policy.
I could write down on paper what I do, you could follow it and within a year you’d have a blog more successful than mine. That’s the truth. No talent involved.
Then we come to the most important point that Jon makes.
“I’m sure even those great at social media now once ‘hacked’ and ‘sliced’ a little at social when they started”
Exactamundo! As the Fonz says! I hacked and sliced at social media so much in the beginning that I would've put a butcher to shame.
Remember! This is the formula to success: Zero talent + 100% hard work + a bunch of mistakes = Exceptional results.
That’s why, if you are going to employ someone to help with your social media marketing then they absolutely, positively, must be, without a shadow of a doubt, someone who has “hacked” and “sliced”.
Recruitment firms for example are not doing this. They are afraid of the hackers and slicers, which means they are failing miserably at picking the right candidates.
If your candidate for a marketing job cannot tell you what mistakes they have made on social media and what they learned from those mistakes, guess what? They are going to make those mistakes on your time and with your money and with your company’s name on it.