Maximizing Leverage of Social Networks

So, probably wrapping up the talk we’ve been having about ecosystems (1, 2), we bring it back to what we were chatting about a few weeks ago about why bloggers are short-changing themselves out of influence by giving up blogging for Twitter.

Making the decision

One of the main things you have to decide on when figuring out where to put your effort and energies is not only what ecosystems you’ll be including into your business model, but which you’ll be excluding.

So say you’re going to spend a ton of time in Twitter, remember you won’t be getting random Google traffic. You’ll get random followers from other people referencing you, but those refs will disappear very quickly under a deluge of more tweets. In contrast, links to your blog may not see many visitors, but Google still counts them and they help your blog forever.

I guess this is the biggest reason for:

– working on multiple platforms, and
– having a home base (like a blog)

The home base has to exist and be active, because you’re starting from scratch otherwise. New people may be following you, but the attention they can spend on you diminishes as they follow more and more people, reducing the influence you have on any one person (thanks to Mitch Joel for pointing this out to me) eventually down to close-to-zero.

So the best thing to figure out is what each platform is best for, and working it to the hilt, but no further, minimizing waste.

The Ultimate Goal

As always the purpose of this is to leverage all of this for maximum impact with minimum effort. So my main intent in figuring this out is to see what the best use is for each site/network, and to use it only for that.

The most important result of this will be less time wasted online, and more chance to enjoy life outside of the web (which I’m working hard on right now). I use time in buses and cabs to use Twitter from my iPhone, for example, because it’s “in-between time” in which other people are working at the goal for you (ie, the driver is driving the bus to get you somewhere, instead of you driving), so it’s like making double-use of that time.

We do so much more online than we used to, and it’s so easy to let it take over your life. A lot of you seeing this probably feel you’re wasting a lot of the time you spend online too, so hopefully this conversation will help you figure it out.





10 responses to “Maximizing Leverage of Social Networks”

  1. Chance Avatar

    Hey Julien, you raise a lot of good points.

  2. CT Moore Avatar

    Loren Feldman pointed out that your own blog is where you own your content, and your brand, and yadiyadiya… I think that that thought is worth some consideration.

    BTW, have you seen this yet? You probably have, but I’ve been thinking about it since yesterday:

  3. Rob McDougall Avatar

    Very interesting.

    If you don’t mind me saying: your own “home base” has shifted focus considerably from a podcast to a new-media marketing blog. Do you think this has the potential for negative feedback from your user base?

    I mean, I’m still here – I’m interested in what you’ve got to say, but doesn’t it mean you basically have to start from scratch as far as… for want of a better word, “fans” go?

  4. Julien Avatar

    @Rob: Sure, I can totally see that. It’s interesting because I’ve thought about this a lot, being the amusing dude that riffs about shit and might be smart occasionally into the one who has good ideas. It’s a tough thing to do.

    It’s interesting about the podcast too, because it could definitely be a vehicle for just that distinction, where you have one channel on a certain subject and a second that’s more lighthearted or whatever.

    As a sidenote, which I’ve explained to a lot of people but never really on the blog, the podcast has never really become uninteresting to me really, it’s been kind of more like “I’ll get around to it” but never actually get around to it. Also an issue where I listen to music less (because my hearing is getting worse) so I have less music to present. Weird situation.

  5. juliofromny Avatar

    Hey Julien,

    What happened to your podcast. I see that your last episode was around February. What happened? Let me know when it’s back up 🙂

  6. Amber Naslund Avatar

    More and more, I’m finding that Twitter is the breeding ground for my thoughts and friendships, and that my blog is the place where it all comes together. It’s cyclical, but I can’t imagine not having my blog. The two together make for a strong balance of bite-sized conversations, and more compelling (sometimes) thought.

    For me, personally, my blog is where I assimilate all the detritus whacking around inside my head. I can’t do that in 140 characters. So the bonus is that my audience finds value in what I write, but I need somewhere to process all that information. I used to do it all in my notebooks. Now, it’s just out there for the world to see. 🙂


  7. RenMan Avatar

    I kind of base my shit on 7 principles, like: Humor and Serious on: Humor, Political, News Commentary, Personal, Tech, Family (private), Entertainment “Review”. Then I try to find ways to combine the newest “platform” (think: twitter) to fit each of those main areas. Google apps help, along with CoverItLive and things like that. It could work good for you, too, I should think. Maybe add video?

  8. sylv Avatar

    I agree, and appreciate your blog posting. I just came to a similar conclusion (that you helped define) through some internet marketer influences in my twitter forest. I’m wresting with blogger because all I know is Dreamweaer through design view. (paying for not learning my coding fundamentals -not that I wasn’t warned). I was wondering, have you authored or could you recommend any resources about how to insert tables and fill them with linked jpegs, things like that for novice bloggers?

    thank you and we wish you nice holidays.

    We’ll watch for a tweet that you’ve made another blog post + come check it.

  9. Gab Goldenberg Avatar

    Not entirely related, but

    1) I just read your PDF with Chris Brogan, finally. Nice stuff!
    2) A problem I have with our whole adulation for social media is that we seem to constantly be arguing that you need to be an extrovert and take interest in others.

    While that’s obviously a proven path to success, I wonder what the introverts would/will respond?

    You might say that introverted models are what we already had. But I feel like we’re going to see introverted business models arise in reaction to the social media craze we’re having, and they won’t just be ‘advertise and interrupt prospects’.

    Part of this will be folks looking to achieve big-scale stuff in social media. Like it or not, you can’t network with hundreds of thousands of people (unless you yourself have a team of tens of thousands, but that kind of defeats the point). So how do you do mass-marketing the way we once had? Digg/SU success for linkbait is the tip of the iceberg, methinks.

  10. Clyde Smith Avatar

    I’ve been searching your site for a PDF download related to Trust Agents. Can’t find it on my desktop either.

    But somebody mentioned a pdf file in these comments so hear I am, wondering where it is.

    Can you help, kind sir?

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