Written by Joel Basa
eMarketing Manager
Xerox Corporation

Coal or Presents? Look at your social media efforts for 2011. Now, what do you think you and your company will receive from the man from the North Pole based on these efforts? After many interactions with individuals in the print industry, I’ve learned there are many experienced social media practitioners but also many “rookies.” I decided to ask our Xerox Social Media Program manager, Diego Pereda, what are some basic do’s and don’ts for any social media practitioner. Here’s what he said.

Expect coal if you…

Use automatic content/feeds to populate your SM Channel
Automation in our industry is often a positive thing but Social Media its not. It requires a personal touch. A unique voice needs to be established and automation of content robs the “personality” out of a channel. Think Personalization.

Improperly Identify Yourself
Be it on a channel you own or a 3rd party, proper identification is required. In fact the FCC requires you properly identify yourself.

One way “shout” or pushing content (lack of content that invites engagement)
Social Media…the keyword in this phrase is the first word: SOCIAL. Pushing content is critical but engaging in conversation is where the true power of social media is harnessed.

Expect presents and gifts if you…

Have Real conversations (we talk like real people, remember)
Use conversational language and have a conversation via your channel(s) similar to the way you would in a casual in-person dialogue. Don’t be too formal.

Listen, listen, listen (not only via a tool but also to conversations happening on platform)
My mom always told me to listen before I talk. The same principle applies to Social Media channels. If you haven’t started engaging in conversation via social media, it is recommended to first listen to the types of conversations occurring in your area of interest…and then speak.

Focus on relationship and engagement not campaigns
Build relationships and interactions via your channels. Be social. “In Your Face” marketing and focusing on campaigns for Social Media decreases the legitimacy of the channel.

What are some other do’s and don’ts for social media in the print industry?  Do you have any examples of social media efforts worthy of coal?  Worthy of presents?