Negative, Derivative People

Ever notice how there are some people that always have negative things to say?.. Here’s why.

Creation requires energy.

It takes a certain type of person to make something out of nothing.

I am that type of person. Continue reading “Negative, Derivative People”

Social Media Experts? (SMEs)

What exactly *IS* a Social Media Expert?……

Over the last year or two, the terms Social Media Expert and Social Media Consultant and Social Media Strategist blah blah blah has become a staple in people’s bios. I had SME on my Linkedin profile for a while and then I removed it.

I removed it because too many people were using it and it didn’t mean anything anymore. I decided that I’d rather have people recognize me as a video editor, which is a concretely-defined craft, instead of one of the millions of SMEs that suddenly permeated the online world.

Recently, there have been a couple of situations that have caused people in the Social Media community to band together and point fingers at people and say “You’re a bad SME!” 😀 Unfortunately… In order to call someone out for doing the wrong thing, you have to have a DEFINITION of a Social Media Expert to begin with.

Vaporware

The problem with nailing down a definition for SMEs is that it’s actually an umbrella term. What I mean is, if I say I’m a video editor, and then you think to yourself “What does Bill Cammack do?”, your mind returns “He edits video”. If I say I’m a SME, your mind returns “…………………” because that term by itself doesn’t mean JACK. Continue reading “Social Media Experts? (SMEs)”

Twitter? Or Your Blog?

Twitter changed the game as far as blogging. Instead of posting something, and MAYBE people would stop by your blog and MAYBE they’d read your articles and MAYBE they’d leave a comment, all of a sudden, what you had to say was being pushed to people who actually REQUESTED to hear what you had to say by following you and then either checking the site itself or installing an app or widget on their computers or phones.

Michelle & Bill
Twitter > Bill

I noticed that the traffic on the Yahoo Videoblogging Group fell off DRASTICALLY as Twitter presented a far better and faster way for people to get immediate responses to questions than an email list.

I also noticed A LOT OF PEOPLE putting a lot of their ideas on Twitter instead of their own blogs. I didn’t really think much of that until I talked with Tyme White about it ten (10) months ago, back in March, 2008:

Tyme: “Yes, the conversations are moving away from blogs but the problem is the same problem that has always existed, one I warned about at least two years ago. How many times has a writer published an article, a larger site wrote about it, and the conversation took place every where but on the writer’s site? Same problem – the writer would have to keep up with those conversations. Now, the same root problem exists, but there are many more sites where the conversation can take place. The writer publishes the entry and now a discussion can happen on the originating blog, any blogs that write about it, any site that aggregates content (Reddit, Chawlk, Digg, StumbleUpon, etc.), Twitter, MySpace, Facebook, any of the social sites that are popping up, forums…the list is long.”

The question is: does it matter to the writer if the conversation takes place in other places? If the answer is no, the writer would have one strategy. If the answer is yes, it does matter and the preference is for the conversation to take place on their blog, well, that would take a different strategy, wouldn’t it?”

So, referencing that practically-one-year-old post by Tyme… Does it matter where *YOU* blog your material? I blog mine to BillCammack.com. I post references to my blog posts on Twitter and Tumblr. Continue reading “Twitter? Or Your Blog?”

Be Original & Useful

So I’m chatting with Christine “PurpleCar” Cavalier the other day, and my current status as the #7 Google entry for “Bill” out of 21,500,000 English pages comes up. (I’m actually #5, because both Gates & Clinton have multiple entries ahead of me… but who’s counting? :D)

So Christine asks me “How did you do that?”, and the interesting thing was that I didn’t have an answer for her. 🙂

I never had a goal of having a high Google ranking for the name “Bill”. I started out branding ReelSolid.TV and then switched to branding BillCammack and “Bill Cammack”.

I had no interest in branding “Bill” because it’s so generic. Not only is it a name, but people have to PAY THEIR BILLS, there’s the BILL OF RIGHTS, ducks have bills, etc… Buffalo Bills, not to mention, a ton of famous Bills… Cosby, Maher, Nye The Science Guy… I’m not even the first Bill on the videoblogging scene. Bill Streeter was there way before I was.

So I decided to think about it… Not that *I* did anything, but how did I end up with such a high ranking? Technically, I can’t say, because as Liz Burr points out, Google’s all about math. However, I do have two tips for people that aspire to some sort of distinction either on the internet or IRL….

1) Be Original

One of the reasons my posts get a lot of play is that they’re original. I made them up. I’m “kicking them off the top”. It’s FRESH information. I don’t write anything ahead of time. I’m thinking about something, I ‘feel’ it, then I go for it.

I’m not reading other people’s ideas, then regurgitating them. I’m not making people aware of what SOMEBODY ELSE said or thought. I might use other people’s material as a foundation for what MY point is, like in Women’s Guide to NYC Dating, but I make a CLEAR distinction between what someone else posted and what’s coming directly from me. If all you’re doing is regurgitating ideas you heard or read on the net, you’re a librarian…. a curator. Why would anyone go to your site for FRESH information when you offer ZERO added value? That’s what http://del.icio.us/ and StumbleUpon are for. The only reason they would visit your site is for YOUR SPECIFIC FLAVOR about things. If you’re not adding any, you don’t get play past people’s first encounter with you.

Another benefit of originality is that people pass your information around, because they’ve never seen it before, ANYWHERE! How many places can you go to see celebrity gossip? A million, plus. So if you want to separate yourself from the pack, make a site like Stephanie Frasco’s whatcelebswear.com or Marissa Nystrom’s celebzaredum.tumblr.com. You don’t go there because there are celebrity shots there… You go there because you want to know what Steph or Marissa HAVE TO SAY about celebs, what they do and what they wear = Added Value, due to their originality.

The other benefit to being original is that when conversations come up IRL about stuff you posted to the net, you actually have valid defensible positions. 🙂 When you’re talking about other people’s stuff, your knowledge on the topic only goes so far as what you’ve READ… Not what you learned or experienced yourself. This is what causes you to LOSE PROPS instead of gaining them, because when people find out that you’re just a librarian/curator for other people’s thoughts and concepts, your conversational value plummets.

2) Be Useful

It’s great to have your own style, and people will definitely check out your blog (show, whatever) just because you’re a stylish person… especially if your style is original for some reason… but you also want to present something USEFUL to your audience. That might be technical information, entertainment or your own style of humor, even if it’s mostly funny TO YOU and makes other people cringe because of the light it sheds on their own lives and relationships. 🙂

When you post useful information, the effect is that people are always interested in it. It’s not the same people… It’s just that as life occurs, the same exact thing happens to different people at different times. In turn, they search google for insight on what just happened to them and end up at your site, absorbing the useful information you posted a year and a half ago. 🙂

Nothing educational to say?… Make up and play an interesting character or talk about what your job is or the town you live in. Give people tips on how to do photography or run an internet music show or work behind the scenes in the film industry. Show people how television shows are made:


How To Properly Color Correct A Presidential Candidate
Formats Available: iPod (.mp4)

OTOH, you don’t want to be useful ‘for no reason’. Make sure the topics are things that you normally kick it about anyway and enjoy discussing or writing about. The people that are interested in the same things will seek your posts out on the internet, and without actually becoming “internet famous”, people will start to “tune in next week” to see what you’re doing or saying now.

~Bill Cammack

Social Media Category: billcammack.com/category/social-media
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