Lately it seems there’s been an upsurge in nay-sayers against social media and the people who are heavily involved in the social media space. The general consensus is that people are sick of hearing the term “social media guru”, or other related terms.
Let’s Not Get Butthurt
Now, first of all “guru” isn’t much of an official title anyway, so lets not get butthurt about someone who calls themselves such a thing anyway. And secondly, it seems to me several of the posts that I have read whining about this phenomenon are written by people who would likely be classified in the same categories as such “guru’s”. Of course, there are many people whom I highly respect that are highly talented when it comes to the whole social media game, you can find them in my blogroll. But this isn’t why I’m writing.
3 Types of People — Connectors, Mavens & Salesmen
I think we all need to remember a few things about social groups and marketing. In The Tipping Point, Malcolm Gladwell talks about the concept that there are 3 types of people: Connectors, Mavens & Salesmen. I’m going to assume that you’re familiar with the concept with these types of people. But in a brief description, Connectors are the types of people who know lots of other people, Mavens are the people who have lots of information, and Salesmen are the types of people who are persuasive.
We Rely on All of These People
In social media, we have and rely on all of these types of people and/or concepts. The connectors are the people that have 30,000 followers on twitter who can broadcast a message that everyone will end up seeing. The mavens are the 5 million visitors on reddit that keep the content fresh and honest. And the salesmen are sometimes the stars of our beloved youtube videos, or sometimes the magnetic headlines that we can’t deny a click.
It’s One Big Community
The thing is, these concepts apply to marketing, epidemics, social media, social groups, and probably a lot of other things. We all fell in love with social media a few years ago because it was new and different, and you didn’t have to be a “somebody” to play. And I would venture to say that many of us called ourselves a “guru” or an “expert” at one time or another. It may not be the case today, but such wisdom comes with maturity as we have all weathered a few storms in this ever evolving world of social marketing. The fact is, even though it is “social” media that we’re discussing, we still rely on a few key components. If we didn’t have the connectors that could spread the word, no one’s message would get out. If we didn’t have the mavens to vote us up, check the facts and leave comments, we’d have no audience. And if we didn’t have the salesmen to sell the message, entice the clicks, and drive the viewers, well no one would be interested at all. So really, in a sense, we’re all guru’s with our own parts to play in this gigantic social community on the web. And that’s how it’s going to continue to be, and that’s how it has to be. We all rely on each other whether directly or indirectly. Let’s not sweat the small stuff.
So I guess the only question is, what’s your part?