Trash Talking in the Social Media World

smx.gifYesterday afternoon I attended SMX’s panel on People-powered search. It featured Jason Calacanis, from Mahalo, who (once again) seemed to tick everyone off.

I do love controversy, don’t get me wrong, I believe it’s good for debate. Keeps the conversation moving and challenges people’s conceptions. What I don’t believe is trashing something to make you and your company look better, but it happens all the time.

Think about TV ads. “Tired of those trashbags that are IMPOSSIBLE to tie? Buy our bags with built in drawstrings!” Or the “their burgers are put under a heat lamp, ours are made fresh to order!”

The tactic is the same. In order to get the person spending the money to buy from me rather than you, I diss what you have to offer.

I see this happen a lot in the Social Media monetizing world. Two of the favorite things to attack are SEO experts and PR firms. One of my favorites are the “but we’re a social media firm, we understand social media, unlike traditional firms.” Okay, that’s great, but HOW do you understand social media? WHAT do you understand? And do you really have that much hate for traditional firms?

emo_kid_color_variant_02_by_sabisaotome.jpegFor a long time the model in cyberspace was “to succeed you must be a hater.” Much like emo kids who hate mainstream music, new media “celebs” were all whining about everything. It’s really tiring to remember who hates what and when. Lets change the focus. Lets celebrate what we can offer without tearing down the other guy.

Unless, of course, you want to be seen as the emo guy in the corner who hates everything. Then, more power to you.

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