My RSS reader had let itself get a bit full and as I was skimming titles… then I see one on Seth Godin’s Blog labeled “My tooth doesn’t hurt“. I stopped at this one. Seth talks about how when your tooth doesn’t hurt, which I hope is most of the time, you aren’t looking for what they (dentists) are selling. He provides some suggestions for reaching the people that will eventually need your services. It seems to boil down to being there. When they need you (or someone who does what you do), you just need to be there in the front of their minds.
Another blog post I read today by Shel Holtz discusses the escapades of a rogue twitterer who seemed to be speaking on behalf of a certain large corporation. MAny of the followers seemed to be convinced. Acording to their public affairs people, this person was not associated with their communications efforts.
My point on mentioning these two posts is simple. If you have a brand, big or small, you MUST be listening. If it is your job to help others with social media, you must not let them only find you when there is a problem. If your charges aren’t at least listening to the conversation, then they can only lose. There is no gain in not listening. Whether the voices you hear are screaming in anger or singing your praise, or even and more likely both or a muddled mix of the two. Even if all you hear is silence, there are lessons to learn.