To Be...Or Not To Be...An Expert at Social Media

As a successful online sales consultant for a new home builder I’ve been kicking around the idea of going out on my own and marketing my skills to other businesses. I know that with my attention to detail I can set up a relationship building model to help increase sales for any business whether it be new homes, dive trips, or anything in between. But as I spoke with business owners they kept telling me they needed a social media expert I realized what I was offering them didn't seem to be enough. Overcoming my previous desire to run away from all this technology I’ve decided to dive into the Social Media pool and see if I can swim.

My first step in learning more about Social Media was to start a twitter account and start following all these Social Media gurus and experts to try to understand it all. Recently while reading a blog by Peter Shankman and Sarah Evans
http://shankman.com/is-your-social-media-expert-really-an-expert/ Is Your Social Media Expert Really an Expert. I found several points quite ironic since I’ve been asking myself how to become an expert.

Shankman and Evans came up with a great list of identifying non-experts (me) so I figured, okay this might be a great learning tool.

Well number 3 certainly applied to me 3. They “discovered” social media in the last six to 16 months, and there’s nothing online from them in the social media space prior to that. (Remember – Google is your friend.) But hmmm, you have to start somewhere. Am I behind the times because I spent the last 3 years building relationships and sales in something not considered the Social Media arena? And, well, before that I was a vagabond traveling around the world with a backpack or a sea bag for 15 years not working at all in PR and marketing, or using my degree in communications from Boston University. I built lots of life experience. I certainly learned social skills as a traveler and a bartender. I learned all the basics of relationship building that I use every day to sell.

If you use social media successfully to build relationships and in turn relationships into sales, does it matter if you’ve been doing it only for 6 months or 10 years? Does only time in a field make you an expert? How about results and other life experience?

Number 15 hit close to home. 15. They don’t maintain an active blog (at least two posts every month). Well shoot! I don’t have a blog at all, where do I get one? And do I really need to have a blog just to prove I know how to connect with people, create relationships and sell something? I went to my favorite web tool, Google and punched in why should I start a blog? I thought this was pretty funny… the answer I got was “blogs are wonderful things to help bloggers establish themselves as experts in a field or topic.” I found this in a blog about blogs… 10 Reasons to start a blog on about.com
http://weblogs.about.com/od/startingablog/tp/Top-Ten-Reasons-to-Blog.htm

So here I am starting a blog, number 15, but again according to number 3 I should have started this long ago because it will take me many years of blogging to establish myself as an expert. Oh the novice-ness I’ve doomed myself to for at least the next 5-10 years just because I chose to live an unconventional life style for about 15 years!

Okay, I’ve decided I don’t want to be an expert! Instead I just want to be me, the creative thinker who can put two and two together and understand the connection between figuring out where an audience would be for a product and using tools that include Social Media to create relationships. But I know darn well that all of that is for nothing if you don’t have that person who can turn those relationships into sales.

I think that’s where I’m an expert! (okay so not an expert, but pretty darn good at it.)

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