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Strategy Destroys Social Media Tools

I’ve written a lot about social media strategic planning and how to find the “hook” for your social media efforts.

Why do I write more about strategy than I do about social media tools and tactics? First, because I’ve been an Internet marketing strategist for 15 years, so that perspective is my home turf.

But second and more importantly, is that if you get too caught up in the tools themselves instead of why the tools work in abstract, you’re going to be crying into your keyboard when the tools change. And they will.

From Standbys to Bygones

We’re not even shaving yet, we’re so far from maturity in social media. We’re in the 1999 era, where you have explosive start-up activity – much of it with zero revenue stream. New and better tools will be coming along, and many of today’s standbys will be surpassed or inadvertently killed off by new partners.

Do you really think that Twitter would survive a Google acquisition intact? Could Facebook remain vibrant under the umbrella of Microsoft or Yahoo!? If you are nodding your head, you might want to think about Excite (once a leading search engine, then killed by a new corporate parent), or eGroups and Geocities (formerly huge and then drained of life after being bought by Yahoo!).

Your job should be to learn what people want from tools, not what tools do for people.

And in the spirit of David Armano, here’s a little visual to remind you of how the online world can change and seemingly dominant players can be usurped:

Are you thinking about why tools work, not which tools work?

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