I don’t usually cover the very specifics of social media here but this particular presentation deserves your attention.

Why Social Media Projects Fail – A European Perspective by BSI. 24 slides speaking a clear message you really don’t have to be an expert to interpret, a great find by Robin Wauters on TechCrunch.

While every slide is filled with worrying statistics, two things stood out and worried me specifically:

1. 68% never heard of the The 1-9-90 rule

on participation inequality on social networks, also thoroughly explained by Mark Suster with additional great advice on the matter. I borrow his closing note:

“Nobody wants to join a club where they feel like they’re not supposed to be there.”

2. 37% think that social media is a media buy

While one could turn the figure around, instead saying that 63% don’t think of social media as a media buy, and consider that a great result, this is still, imho, one of the most serious issues why companies keep failing. You don’t buy your customers, ambassadors and fans, you earn them. Yes, you can buy social media traffic to gain eye balls and temporary attention, but guess what, attention is so thin and scarce these days, you might as well blow soap bubbles for the same lasting effect.

Why this troubles me?
I keep seeing so many startups not embracing all the possibilities of social networks and tools in terms of providing valuable feedback for their future product, connecting with fans and customers, and building their social graph and proof, because of all the noise that makes it so hard to see the forest for the trees. Mainly due to the very fact Paul Carr recently so well articulated just before stepping of the Twitter trainThe noisy echo chamber of experts who see social media as a shiny object and rub it until it gets all worn out and dirty.

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What if we could all agree on to consider social media as an expression of our human social behavior, instead of just another communication channel to fill with?

You might just get surprised by the response, and who knows, even find the true influencers Brian Solis talks about.

Note. Those who wish to make a comment on how egocasting also is part of human behaviour, make no trouble. It’s not becoming, and certainly not a behaviour for a company to embrace on social networks.

Find out more About Me and fellow Top 100 Women in Tech in Europe. Connect with me on Twitter, LinkedIn, Facebook, or just drop me a line! Subscribe to my Feed, Startup Advice, and Swedish Startups Twitter list. And remember, “You never learn anything when you speak, only when you listen” – Roelof Botha / Douglas Leone, Sequoia Capital

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