An Online Social Media Instructor

I am one of the instructors. I think I might be the very first one, definitely one of the early ones. It feels good to be on the ground level. This is a social media startup. The classes will be online. That is not acting cheap. That is not going for the second choice. It actually makes no sense to conduct social media classes in the traditional bricks and mortar setting. You want the instructor online. You want the students online.

I am one of the top 100 people in New York City on Twitter. (@paramendra) I am really into social media. If you are a people person fascinated by technology, social media comes naturally to you, as it does to me. Social media is as much about people as technology. If you have poor people skills that is not to say you are not going to be good at social media, but that is to say you are going to have to work on your people
columbiaImage by paramendra via Flickr skills just as hard as you might work on the
technology part. Just setting up a Twitter or a Facebook account is not going to do it.

I have seen people and organizations set up blogs, and all they do is post what used to be press releases. That is not my idea of blogging. There is a great way to tweet and blog, and there is a so so way to tweet and blog, and there are some lousy ways. There are so so Facebook pages, and there are Facebook pages that grip you.

You don't need a million page hits to your blog. You don't need 10,000 followers on Twitter before you can be a social media success. Social media for small businesses is as much about customer service as customer acquisition. Social media is about making intimate conversations with customers possible. If you really, truly care about your customers, intimate conversations are not chores. If they feel like chores, you need to step up on the customer service pedal. Social media does not solve that. You can have a social media presence and still have a lousy customer service. Stale Twitter and Facebook accounts, and stale blogs are not my idea of getting social media.

I responded to a Craig's List ad by Duane Wells, the founder, and that is how I got started with the Social Media Learning Institute. I have every reason to believe he is pretty ambitious with it. And I like that. I wanted to be talking to an entrepreneur at heart before I signed up. We are still talking, we are still chalking out the details. And the guy is in Pittsburgh. We use social media to communicate. We are eating our own dog food.

(Posted at The Social Media Learning Institute posterous)

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