Alright.  Am I allowed to vent?  If you’re into social media marketing, maybe you’ll be able to commiserate.  In my little world, social media is alive and vibrant, teeming with news, ideas, valuable information and even money.  Like the Internet, it has its bad parts, but the good far outweighs the negative side effects a platform for 15 minutes of fame brings.  Every now and then, I run into some social media myths that burst my little  idealistic bubble, and reminds me again the need to educate businesses on the benefits of social media for business.

1.  If we build it, they will come!
No engagement.  No friend invites.  No marketing.  No content.  And yet you think that potential clients will rain from heaven like manna to your Facebook page and immediately turn around and become your customer?  Um, no.  With a bazillion different websites, businesses and ads all vying for attention you better get your A-game on and engage.

2.  I want a million followers/fans!
Ah!  The age old quality versus quantity debate!  Of course I can get you a million followers, but 95% of them will be spammers from here to Malaysia.  And so what if they can’t take advantage of your restaurant’s special this Friday?  It’ll only make it look like social media doesn’t work so you can say “I tried” and give up.

3.  It’s just a fad.
Really?  At the time of this writing, B2B social network, LinkedIn, is about to release its IPO at $45 a share to potentially make a sweet $350 million with a capital M and social media is just a fad?  Politicians who are not engaging the populace on Facebook might as well give their concession speech now.  Social media simply allows for word of mouth (WOM) marketing to happen in the digital space.  Word of mouth marketing is not a fad.  It works.

4.  That’s for B2C companies.
Since when does working at a B2B company mean that you’re not on any social networks?  HubSpot, a B2B marketing solutions company, has pretty much built their entire business through online marketing efforts.  And they help other B2B companies do the same for themselves and their clients.  Enough said.

5.  I’m doing alright already. I don’t need social media.
What is this deep love affair with mediocrity and the status quo?  How relevant do you think your current marketing mix is to the next generation?  The housing bubble literally killed the careers of some real estate agents.  Others dug their heels in and came up with innovative ways to market and stay in business.  Newspaper after newspaper outlet shut down because of their inability to adapt to the new ways people were consuming news.  The question has become not if but how long a company, sans social media  marketing, will last before it dies.

These are just a few excuses (Let’s be honest), that I hear floating around when it comes to businesses getting into social media.

If you’re a marketer, share what myths you have heard – either in your experience or from others.