Biz Tips: Social media roils, but for the better?

Biz Tips: Social media roils, but for the better?


Social media roils, but for the better?

Photo by Jakob Owens on Unsplash

Disruption is just another day for Sid Hassim. His group, Social Media United Nations, prides itself on hating “the same old, same old. It’s about moving forward and making this medium better.”

Hassim co-founded Digital Media Strategist. He also is a blogger and freelance writer as he and his social media friends cover conferences and other online activities. Together, they take branding, customer and client engagement, and social media seriously.

Sales and marketing expert Aaron Kilby talked with Hassim about the prospects for social media in America, such as life without Google-Plus.

“Wait, we’re burying the lede… People are still using Google+?” Hassim asked in jest. “This was Goggle’s millionth time doing social in some form. It started out with a buzz, and everyone wanted an invite. Then, Poof! Ghost town.

“If they started with Hangouts as a selling feature, maybe they would’ve gone differently,” he said. “The facts are this is not the first time they’re going to try to compete with Facebook — and certainly not the last.”

Hassim drew a direct line to a headline-making data breach.

“Call me crazy, but that little data leakage thing had something to do with Google+ going the way of the dodo,” he said.

Heavy changes

In the fast-changing world of social media, even a few months can seem eternal. Not surprisingly, Hassim said in the last five years, the online realm has “changed a ton.”

“Where do we start?” he said. “It’s become a ‘look at me culture’ rather than being ‘social.’ Look at where I am. Look at what I’m eating. Look at my kid’s first-day-of-school pictures.

“I’m not saying that’s necessarily bad,” Hassim said. “But when we’ve become so self-obsessed with what people think on social, our view of reality becomes skewed. I call it Generation Me. With all the positives, how many negatives are out there? Definitely more.”

Comparing the effective reach of Instagram and SnapChat, Hassim favors Instagram “by a large margin.”

“Does anyone still use Snap anymore? No, seriously,” he said. “Who’s using Spectacles right now to get their branding and message across? Exactly.”

In general, Hassim lamented the state of online interaction.

“We don’t get in normal conversations anymore,” he said. “It’s either a hot topic or politics. A stripped-down, basic conversation is what’s missing nowadays.”

Hassim wondered rhetorically, “Doesn’t Facebook own the world now? We’re all pawns in the grand scheme of things on Instagram.”

Healthy virus

He believes that having a post go viral is still good for a professional’s resume.

“If you’re in marketing, advertising and social media, going viral can only help if it’s a positive post,” Hassim said.

He thinks a huge fallacy in the medium today is influencer influence.

“The biggest mistake is that we put too much stock in ‘rockstars’ who quote just to quote,” Hassim said. “We take these influencers’ words as gospel when we should be creating our own path.

“There’s too many people in this medium from who we take their words as the end all, be all,” he said. “It’s kind of sad. We get all these people out there as ‘keynote’ speakers who add little to no value except cool quotes and phrases.”

As a veteran of many major social media, marketing and advertising conferences, Hassim had world-weary advice for first-time attendees.

“I’ve covered it all,” he said. “It got to a point where it became the same thing over and over again. Use your time to network with other attendees. See what you guys have in common. Build from there.”

About The Author

Jim Katzaman is a manager at Largo Financial Services and worked in public affairs for the Air Force and federal government. You can connect with him on Twitter, Facebook and LinkedIn.

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