The 7 Deadly Sins of Social Media

Posted by

The 7 Deadly Sins are a really useful mnemonic that people have used to guide their lifestyle choices for a couple of thousand years, from the Medieval Age, through the Industrial and Technological Ages. As we’ve now entered the Age of Social Networking, I was asked recently as a social media specialist to speak at a business networking event about how we could interpret them for today. So here are my 7 Deadly Sins of Social Media.

 

The 7 Deadly Sins of Social Media

 

Lust

Lust? It’s a great word isn’t it? I know, I know. Your mind has spun off at a tangent. My favourite definition of this word is that it’s an acronym for Leaking Underground Storage Tank! But in social media terms it can be self-destructive when we lust after the wrong things. Some people lust after attention online. This sometimes leads them to make poor choices. Such as using language that’s unprofessional. It gets attention, but often for the wrong reasons: it turns off potential clients. Keep your clients close by remembering that everything you say online is visible – there’s no such thing as a private message online.

Gluttony

Sometimes it seems like there are 7 billion social media platforms currently available. That works out as one per person on this planet. The social media glutton has an account on each one. The problem is that he doesn’t have time to get any work done because it takes 23.5 hours a day to post on them all.

Greed

The Greedy Social Media Sinner wants it all. He wants 100,000 followers by next week. He wants 10,000 Likes on Facebook and 500+ LinkedIn connections. BUT, he’s really doesn’t want to put the effort in to build a relationship with them. That’s too much like hard work. So he buys twitter followers from some dodgy online offer, and Links In with anyone at all – even if there’s no chance of any actual business coming out of it. The end result? A lot of empty numbers. Don’t be greedy, earn your followers by becoming a source of valuable information. This is the information economy after all.

Sloth

The social media Sloth loves to tweet, facebook and share. But only once a week. Or maybe twice a month. Actually, she’s somehow too busy to tweet most of the time. The last time was in March, or was it January? Oh, and she loves to link her accounts so that all she has to do is tweet once and exactly the same message is shared everywhere. Hashtags and all. We all see the evidence of these people around us, but I urge you not to become one of them.

Wrath

You’ve heard of Angry Birds? This guy is the Angry Tweeter. He’s always got a problem, always has a social wrong to right. He always gets bad service in bars and restaurants and the first thing he does is tweet it out for the world to see. What’s wrong with this picture? All we know of him is that he’s always getting into an argument over something. Our conclusion? He’s got a bad attitude and we wouldn’t want to do business with him.

Envy

Every time I look on Facebook or Twitter, I see something that makes me grind my teeth. Have you noticed how everyone except you is having such an amazing time? They’re going to meetings that are more like drinks with friends than a sales pitch. They’re winning new clients every 8 seconds. They’re making money while they sleep! What?! Where’s all the hard graft of the real world? Why don’t they ever have a bad hair day or ever just miss the bus on a rainy day?

Of course, this is the social media world and these are just the edited highlights. For public consumption. Don’t worry about what they’re doing, concentrate on getting what you’re doing right.

Pride

How many Likes do you have on your Facebook Page? What about twitter followers? More than me, or him or her? Who cares? If all you talk about online is how utterly amazing you are, you’re a Social Media Sinner. When what you do is more important than what we do, it shows. And shows repeatedly. Don’t misunderstand me. A certain amount of pride is actually a good thing IMHO. We should be proud of our achievements, but carried too far it becomes boastfulness. That’s when it becomes a real turn-off for us and that is why we unfollow you. Share your successes but try sharing those of others more frequently.

The Next Step

If you want a prosperous Social Media life, I urge you to avoid the 7 Deadly Sins of Social Media. If not, you may not be struck by lightning, but you’ll certainly incur the wrath of your clients.

If you’d like to discuss how Ash can help your business avoid the 7 Deadly Sins of Social Media, contact him via Design Inspiration.

 

Ash Mashhadi

Ash is a Web Design and Social Media Specialist. He is also the founder partner at Design Inspiration. Ash is considered to be one of the area’s most prominent social media consultants. He speaks fluent Twitter for business. Ash is a respected and prolific writer; he is often asked for expert comment by the media and to write for professional publications and websites. Ash has appeared on national TV and radio. You can connect with Ash via Twitter where he is @inspirationguy


People who read this post also read...

  • Info

    Really thought provoking! I shall keep these in mind.

    • http://www.inspiration.co.uk Ash Mashhadi (@inspirationguy)

      Thanks! I’m glad you found them useful as well as entertaining :-)

  • Peter Simmonds

    First you speak them then blog them. Great to see these excellent tips in writing this time. 4Sight at 4Networking Exeter sometime soon?

    • http://www.inspiration.co.uk Ash Mashhadi (@inspirationguy)

      Thanks for the comment, Peter. I’m glad you enjoyed my speech enough to want to read it! I’d be pleased to do a 4Sight speech at 4Networking Exeter soon.

  • Helen Dewdney

    Is it a sin to complain on a fairly frequent basis that 144 characters just isn’t enough for a conversation?! ‘cos I do!! Great article!

    • http://www.inspiration.co.uk Ash Mashhadi (@inspirationguy)

      Love it, Helen. I don’t think that’s a sin, because I’d be guilty of it too!