The Graphic novel of Obelix and Co. by René Goscinny and Albert Uderzo (from the comic series of Asterix) tells us the story of Menhir. The romans to capitalize the Gauls and capture them, decide to buy the Menhir from Obelix. Seeing Obelix showcase his richness, the villages of Gaul start making Menhir and sell it to Caeser.With Preposterus buying up every menhir at ever-increasing prices, it is not long before the camp of Totorum is filled with menhirs, and Caesar's finances heavily in debt. This causes a real trouble to Caesar and the romans because of one single thing... No one really knows what Menhir are used for!!!!
When I meet people, they come with flasy names, I am social media manager for XYZ company or I am social media strategist for XYZ company. The big old tycoons of business are worried, what is this storm of Social media? Oh that facebook, its no use anyway. Don't you know MySpace? There was a big storm back then. This facebook is going that way Or some young tycoons (I am surprised how many they are wow) say, Oh Yes, I prefer twitter, facebook and all. See 360 degree connectivity, ROI, Socionomics and all that. But when asked a simple question, how do you earn ROI out of Social Media, very few people have answers.
Everyone is talking about Why the social media is needed, no one is talking How the social media is useful. Yes, Facebook has the largest population on the planet, this is amazing, this simple tells us that 36% of the world is damaged and lonely, it does not mean all of them are waiting for you to befriend them and spam their walls with your product.
Don't stack up your camps with Menhir like Preposterus did. Try to understand the logic behind it, try to understand what Social media can do for you. Its like Brahma-astra from Ancient vedic Hindu, can take over the world if used correctly or destroy everything in sight, if used wrongly.
Social media is not about facebook, its not about twitter. Its about winning the customer back in a way he likes. Its not about the false promises you made in your corporate brochure or the fancy ad that convinced (read: tricked) people into buying your products and scrapping them anyways. Think about it this way, every customer who bought a product from you, will buy it from you or is angry with you is standing in a large football stadium looking at you. You get one chance of 140 characters to turn that large crowd with you or without you. Use your words wisely.
Also social media won't help you a lot in getting that ROI you wanted, it will help you begin on a journey to get that ROI back. Social media is a shift in the way we communicate and its about time you shed the last cloth of disguise and get into the pool, raw and pure.