From the bestselling author of The Art of the Start and Enchantment, a no-nonsense guide to becoming a social media superstar.
By now it's clear that whether you're promoting a business, a product, or yourself, social media is near the top of what determines your success or failure. And there are countless pundits, authors, and consultants eager to advise you.
But there's no one quite like Guy Kawasaki, the legendary former chief evangelist for Apple and one of the pioneers of business blogging, tweeting, Facebooking, Tumbling, and much, much more. Now Guy has teamed up with Peg Fitzpatrick, who he says is the best social-media person he's ever met, to offer The Art of Social Media -the one essential guide you need to get the most bang for your time, effort, and money.
With over one hundred practical tips, tricks, and insights, Guy and Peg present a bottom-up strategy to produce a focused, thorough, and compelling presence on the most popular social-media platforms. They guide you through steps to build your foundation, amass your digital assets, optimize your profile, attract more followers, and effectively integrate social media and blogging.
For beginners overwhelmed by too many choices as well as seasoned professionals eager to improve their game, The Art of Social Media is full of tactics that have been proven to work in the real world. Or as Guy puts it, "great stuff, no fluff."
ABOUT THE AUTHORS
There is nothing to writing. All you do is sit down at a typewriter and bleed.
The quality of any advice anybody has to offer has to be judged against the quality of life they actually lead.
READ THIS FIRST
Do not follow where the path may lead. Go instead where there is no path and leave a trail.
If the only prayer you said was thank you, that would be enough.
Do what you can, with what you have, where you are.
Let's start with the basics. All social-media platforms provide a "profile" page for you to explain who you are. This is for biographical information and images. An effective profile is vital because people use it to make a snap judgment about your account.
The goal of a profile is to convince people to pay attention to your social-media activities. Essentially, it is a résumé for the entire world to see and judge. This chapter explains how to optimize your profile to maximize its effectiveness.
1. Pick a Neutral Screen Name
Before we work on your profile, let's pick a good screen name. Today's clever name, such as @MartiniMom or @HatTrickHank, is tomorrow's regret, and you're not going to work for the same company forever, so @GuyMacEvangelist is risky too. Imagine it's two years from now and you're looking for a job. Now pick a name.
You probably already have a screen name, but the longer you use a lousy one, the harder it will be to change it later, and the more negative effects it will cause. Our recommendation is that you use a simple and logical screen name. In my case, that's "Guy Kawasaki," not "G. Kawasaki," "GT Kawasaki," or "G. T. Kawasaki." This is not the place for cleverness or complexity, so make it easy for people to find and remember you.
2. Optimize for Five Seconds
People do not study profiles. They spend a few seconds looking and make a snap decision. If this were online dating, think Tinder (swipe right for yes, swipe left for no) versus eHarmony (complete the Relationship Questionnaire).
Your profile should give the impression that you are likable, trustworthy, and competent. Platforms provide space for this information:
- Avatar. This is a small circular or square picture of you or your logo.
- "Cover" (Google+, Facebook, and LinkedIn) or "header" (Twitter). This picture is the largest graphic element in a profile and visually tells your story.
- Biographical text. This is a summary of your education and work experience.
- Links. This is a list of links to your blog, website, and other social-media accounts.
3. Focus Your Avatar on Your Face
A good avatar does two things. First, it validates who you are by providing a picture, so people can see which Guy Kawasaki you are. (God help us if there is more than one.) Second, it supports the narrative that you're likable, trustworthy, and competent.
Your face provides the most data about what kind of person you are. Thus your avatar shouldn't show your family, friends, dog, or car, because there isn't room. This also means you should not use a logo or graphic design unless the avatar is for an organization.
Here are three additional avatar tips:
- Go asymmetrical. Symmetry makes a picture less interesting, so don't stick your face exactly in the middle. Divide a picture into thirds and place your eyes near one of the vertical lines.
- Face the light. The source of light should come from in front of you. If the light comes from behind you, your face will probably be underexposed unless you force a fill flash on your camera or use a photo editor.
- Think big. When people scan posts and comments, they see your avatar at a postage-stamp size. When they click on it, however, they should see a big, crisp pho