In the world of social media, there are several rock stars that continue to inspire me. Those social media legends continue to resonate above the constant stream of social media noise.
This is a list of the different types of social media musicians that we encounter online. Keep in mind that each type is a generalization. Reflect on your social media career to determine which category you may fit in.
One Hit Wonder
One of your blog posts was featured on Digg. The spike in traffic to your website was mind-numbing. During that week, you had a 300% increase in subscriptions to your blog. Many conferences and events booked you as a featured speaker. However, a few months later, you found it hard to come up with new ideas and your blog has gone stale. Your start-up idea didn’t get the funding it needed and now you have become a recluse. You’ll be featured this year at SXSW on a "Where Are They Now?" panel. You had what it took to produce a hit and there’s still time for a comeback.
The best form of flattery is imitation. By only retweeting consistently what other thought leaders say, you rarely come up with your own opinions. You lurk within the social networks, play it safe and haven’t developed a platform of your own yet. Instead of realizing your own goals, you may be unknowingly supporting someone else’s dreams. Push yourself out of your comfort zone, find your voice and express your own signature style.
You have fresh and creative thoughts. Unfortunately, you can’t seem to attract the right fans to your message collectively at the right time. You are a starving social media musician on a corner near the entrance to a subway station. The video you uploaded to YouTube didn’t go viral as planned. You have a handful of followers who are often removed by Twitter for suspicious activity. Find your true niche and determine what you are willing to sacrifice to find success. You dream of winning a Social Media American Idol contest. It may be time to get a manager (aka a mentor) to help you start moving in the right direction.
You work on a team and appeal to a specific audience who adores you. Even though this path may have a shelf life, you and your colleagues are currently reaping all of the rewards. There is strength in numbers. Your organization's reputation is larger than your individual brand. You enjoy the VIP treatment, even though most people don’t know your full name. Make sure that you have an exit strategy to reinvent yourself as a solo artist, just in case.
You have thousands of followers who enjoy all of your tweets and comment frequently at your blog. For the past few years, you have worked hard consistently and persistently to build your unique brand. You have written a few books and are currently on a world tour. Fans and groupies attend events that you speak at to learn from you. You give back to your community and help others reach their goals in your industry. You have many projects that you are passionate about in the works. Continue to ask questions, stay innovative and engage in several one-on-one conversations. Congrats and keep up the good work!
All social media musicians must take the time to reflect. Revise your professional goals, learn from your failures and determine the social media legacy you wish to leave behind. Although the past affects all of us, you can create new opportunities and success for yourself.