Social media has a lot of great things going for it, but there is a lot of downside as well. There are too many downsides to get into here so let’s focus on just one: social media parasites.
par·a·sitenoun: parasite; plural noun: parasites
an organism that lives in or on another organism (its host) and benefits by deriving nutrients at the host’s expense.
a person who habitually relies on or exploits others and gives nothing in return synonyms: hanger-on, cadger, leech, passenger from Greek parasitos ‘(person) eating at another’s table,’
Eating at another’s table. I love that!
Anyway, I got yet another message on LinkedIn from some guy I don’t know. Basically, he asked me for some of my marketing contacts to promote his new widget. My reply was…
I want to make sure I understand your message. You don’t want to cast me for a voiceover project but you do want to give you the names of some of my contacts so you can promote yourself?
He answered yes. I then said…
I’m not comfortable referring you to my contacts when I can’t vouch for you. If you want to effectively promote your (insert widget here), you should hire a PR or marketing firm. If you can’t do that, won’t do that, or it didn’t occur to you to do that, you should take a serous look at your business model. And for the record, this is not what LinkedIn is for. LinkedIn is designed to help people find jobs and establish meaningful, reciprocal relationships.
He then very positively and politely thanked me. I will give him credit. Even though his request was absurd he took my answer the right way and had the good manners to craft a thoughtful response. Most of the time when this happens they don’t even answer after you call them out. Remember this LinkedIn story?
TIP OF THE WEEK
The gentleman in question could not afford to effectively market his widget and turned to strangers on LinkedIn for help. I do sympathize with his situation. I’ve been there. However, there are ways to do it without being perceived as (or actually being) a social media parasite:
Do your research. The library is free!
Create a crowdfunding campaign. if you have a new product you’re trying to bring to market and are short on funds, Kickstarter or IndieGoGo are a possibility. I will say that if you choose one of them, you need to have a killer marketing campaign complete with video(s) and rewards for funding your cause.
Take out a loan. If you have collateral and a good credit score there is always the classic bank loan.
NEWS AND NOTES
Thursday, February 15th @8PM EST: my next Edge Studio “Business and Money 201” webinar topic will be ‘Rates, Negotiating, and Billing’. Click here to sign up.
Tuesday, February 20th @7PM EST: my next Abacus Entertainment seminar will be ‘Voiceover Marketing for Real People’. You can attend either in-person at the New York studio or online. Use the promo code TOMSENTME to get 20% off! (in person session only) Click here to sign up.
Thursday, February 22nd @8PM EST: my next Edge Studio “Marketing 201” webinar topic will be ‘4 Words that will Kill your Marketing’. Click here to sign up.
Happy Chocolate Fondue Day and