Top 10 Clues Someone Isn’t Really a Social Media Expert

10. There are social media icons in their e-mail signature, but when people click on these links they find that the page hasn’t been updated in weeks or months (or doesn’t exist anymore!)

9. There are social media icons on their website, but when people click on these links they find that the page hasn’t been updated in weeks or months (or doesn’t exist anymore!)

8. Whenever you ask them if they’ve actually used the tools (either personally or for a client) they are recommending, they can never give you a straight answer

7. Their idea of using social media is to promote a company’s services or key messages without any engagement with the user audience

6. They claim to be an influencer, but when you look at their Klout score you find that it is less than your mother’s

5. Their program proposals talk about BIG IDEAS, but nowhere do they mention how they will track and measure success

4. As soon as a shiny new tool comes out, they immediately propose you incorporate it into your social media program

3. MySpace is mentioned in a discussion about social media channels to consider leveraging

2. They guarantee immediate results

And the no. 1 clue that someone isn’t really a social media expert…

1. Somewhere in their Twitter/Facebook/Klout/Google+/Foursquare/Blog profile it says, “Social media expert”

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15 comments on “Top 10 Clues Someone Isn’t Really a Social Media Expert

  1. My main contact at one of my accounts have the linkedin icon inserted in his name of his email signature but it doesn’t link anywhere! I’m not going to tell him.

    Also on a conference call with some customers about their lead conversion (or lack thereof) and their social media manager told me that social media marketing and the website marketing are completely separate. I straight up told her she was wrong! She got promoted recently to “eCommerce Marketing Manager” Wtf?!

  2. I am in 100% agrement with all of these points except for one of them…and that would be #1. I do not think it is a bad thing to position yourself as an expert if you have a great deal of social media knowledge. Nobody knows it all, but an expert does not necessarily mean that you know everything.

    Also, one point to add…they tell you that results can be achieved with social media alone, in the absence of other marketing efforts. Social media needs to be part of a greater marketing program, not the only component.

    • I’m personally not a fan of ever using the term “expert” unless I have 100 percent certain that I know everything about the subject matter. In other words, there’s always something to be learned, which is why I am anti the term.

  3. These are terrific except I’m not in agreement with #6. A number of us only tweet on behalf of our clients ie not using our own name so a personal Klout score becomes less relevant. Other rankings, like G+ statistics, can also be fickle. In the few weeks since G+ opened my ranking’s gone from 29,000 to around the 15,000 rank. Definitely not top 100 but a significant leap up the ladder. But then I’m not claiming to be a social media expert either!

      • The one thing I would add in an enterprise context is someone who is completely blind towards integration into enterprise systems like e.g. support or crm systems.

        A lot of folks combine social media with seo knowledge and/or facebook knwoledge. It might be part of the story but to integrate social media into the systems already in place in an enterprise is the critical part.

        Another area many so called experts do not have in focus is the internal use of social media concepts to improve collaboration within the enterprise. This is a whole big field of new business values and improvements. You can llok at or’s chatter but also at Google+ which runs a pilot of an encapsulated Google+ for the enterprise already.

        I do have a fairly good summary of my view of social media for SMB but so far it is in German only as it was witten for a customer rather than for my blog which is in English (

  4. True, true. As a man of compromise, I’d say: at least they are trying. But it is not enough. If I were asked, I wouldn’t even hire them to be an employee monitor, I’d rather let a software do that. In some things I trust programs more than people who are throwing around expert titles with absolutely no evidence of being qualified to do so. But for the record, it is great that you compiled this list for those who are easily mislead.

  5. Pingback: The End of Social Media … If SOPA Passes | PR at Sunrise

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