Brandon (BJ) Mendelson – Author of Social Media is Bullshit
If you are one of the lucky few that has thousands upon thousands of twitter followers, congratulations….it means nothing. Your company has 50,000 facebook likes? Sorry, but they only did it for the coupon you offered them. You post the most amazing infographics on Pinterest? Well – that’s cool… I’m not sick of Pinterest yet. But have you ever stopped to ask yourself why? Why do you put SO much effort into crafting this web of social media interaction?
At its core, social media can be a fairly useful community tool. You can get quick updates from friends you would have otherwise lost touch with. You can get up to the second news from anywhere across the globe. You can even get an endless stream of baby pictures, baby stories, baby advice, baby videos and baby articles. On that note, PLEASE stop posting all things baby on Facebook. No one thinks your kid is as cute as you do. The point is, I truly believe the original intent of the social media revolution was to increase our connectivity. But then big business got their grubby little hands on our virtual community and they mind f*#ked us into thinking it was a revolution in marketing and we all got scared we were going to miss the boat.
To find out what I mean, you are going to have to listen to the interview, but I’ll leave you with these thoughts. In the gold rush of 1849, who made all the money? It wasn’t the guys digging for gold, it was the guys selling the shovels. In the tech bubble at the end of the 20th century, who made all the money? Not the guy who invested in PSINet, Webvan, Pets.com, Nortel Networks, etc. It was the investment bankers, executives, traders, and guys selling advice. In the real estate bubble that burst in 2008, who made all the money? Not the guy who refinanced his house 3 times. Hell – he’s lucky to still HAVE his house. It was the brokers that were telling you how it was both a great time to buy AND a great time to sell (I mean hey, commission is commission!). As with any fad, you have to be skeptical about where you get your information. With this one, we have listened to the media tell us how great the ….well….media is. So before you go spending your hard earned marketing budget on social media gurus, ninjas, experts, consultants, or whatever the newest term might be – listen to this episode of smart people podcast.
Our guest is Brandon (B.J.) Mendelson, former marketer turned journalist and social critic. His new book, Social Media is Bullshit sheds a new light on the social media craze and tells you the right AND wrong ways to utilize all of the social media tools. He has contributed to The Huffington Post, CNN, MTV’s O Music Awards, Mashable, Forbes, the Eisner-nominated ComicsAlliance, and other national outlets.
The Facebook book Brandon mention during the interview is called The Facebook Effect: The Inside Story of the Company That Is Connecting the World