One. People come up with cracks on self-proclaimed social media experts.
Two. Some influentials get emotional when people dismiss their talents.
Three. Then people laugh and bully and then they laugh some more.
Four. Soon, someone comes along explaining the word “expert”… duh.
Five. People loose themselves in whimsy meta discussions.
As the ball gets rolling, which it does at at least once every year, it follows a strict narrative that’s both easy to follow and to predict. But each and every time I wonder; aren’t people worried that someone out there with half a brain will think that they’re just plain stupid?
Everyone thinks they’re smart, everyone thinks that they’re opinions are not only important, but that they have merit and substance, too. If someone calls them out, well… then they have to be stupid, right?
Standard reptile brain conclusion.
It’s human nature.
I don’t mind all that much really, if nothing else it makes for valuable data that can be harvested and analysed for companies who wish to have their products and services landing well in this highly irrational landscape.
But it concerns me that so many people doesn’t seem to be the slightest bothered that they out themselves as complete buffoons.
No, I’m not taking sides in the “social media expert” debate. Both sides does on rare occasions present one or two substantial arguments. But mostly, they don’t.
Here’s a good analytical filter that you can use.
Distinguish between these three groups:
Social Media Pundits
Social Media Naturals
Social Media Experts
All three groups can have a massive following online. All three can be so-called A-listers. And all three have truckloads of advice for you.
But the social media pundits have earned their following by talking. They are often very witty, opinionated and rhetorical and they do often bring a serious entertainment value to the scene. They’re drawn to current topics where there’s a lot of heated discussion going on.
The social media naturals are just great at online networking. The same way some people are great at public speaking or convincing on the phone, some has just discovered their preferred medium in social. They’re simply talented in using social media for themselves and it comes very easy for them.
The trait of social media experts is that they bring you value, and they listen to you. You follow them not because you feel that you should be best friends, nor because they’re funny as hell.
Experts are followed because they help people, expertly.
And here’s the problem:
People mistake social media pundits and social media naturals for social media experts. And both of these two groups love the attention, so instead of bringing any clarity to the discussion, they tend to add more wood to the fire just for the sake of it.
In short: Social media experts can be blamed for a lot of things, for sure. But we can’t take the heat for everything anyone with an online following is doing — or saying.
So, if you’re in the mood for throwing some stones, how about practicing some aim first?