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Social Media – And the Power of the Assist

Today we are going to relate social media to the Power of the Assist using basketball as an example.

Let’s first see what happens when we try to do things on our own.  In this case, the ball handler tries to get fancy with the behind the back dribble going one-on-one with the defender…with disastrous results!

In contrast, watch how this ball handler penetrates the lane to get the defense to sag to him, and then he sets up the open man with a beautiful assist.

When coaching, I always stress that the ball can travel a lot faster than the player. Spacing and passing will always be more effective than one-on-one matchups. As an example of the ball traveling faster than the player, take a look at the following.  The defender could have stolen the ball and dribbled the floor with a lot of one-on-one moves. Or, that player could pass the ball for crowd-pleasing results!

So how do we give/get Assists in Social Media?

  1. Build up your team by growing those Facebook Friends, LinkedIn Connections and Twitter Followers! Don’t be afraid to extend beyond your circle of friends to further develop your influence. You can’t take on the world one-on-one, so build up the team that is looking to give you an assist.
  2. Value the Assist over the Hot Dog by being a trusted contributor and not a salesman. Bill Cosby said “You know, I brought you in this world, and I can take you out” If you abuse your relational privileges with a constant sales pitch to friends/connections/followers, they will simply break off that relationship. Rather than show off your company’s mad skilz each time a question comes up, perhaps you just offer open and generous assistance to boost someone else’s stats with no thought to your own gratification.
  3. Don’t underestimate the power of the Double Assist by using the Retweet and Blog Comment. Great ball movement may include passing the ball to someone more open…who may pass the ball to someone with an even better shot. When you retweet, your twitter ID gets tagged to that nugget of wisdom you are passing along and helps both you and the original poster.  When making a blog comment, your ID and URL get posted for tracking back to your own social media presence with external links.  It also builds the blogger’s statistics and offers ideas for subsequent blog posts.
  4. Call for the Ball to get the Assist (Share, Like, Retweet). Sometimes the ball handler does not know you are open. I have social influencers who were courteous enough to follow me when I started following them. I am trying to get this new blog more visibility, but I do not have the following to generate that interest by myself.  I’m hiding in plain sight! Therefore, I am stepping out of my own introverted comfort zone and requesting the Share/Like/Retweet from my social influencer friends to build my own stats and influence. It is my promise as an engaged teammate to return the favor (assist).

I love the game of basketball, and I especially like when it flows beautifully with team-minded individuals using the Power of the Assist.  Please share your comments/shout-outs with how you have assisted others w/social media or perhaps been assisted by influencers.

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Brian Vickery

I love my wife and two daughters. I am blessed in that I also love my job as a principal and EVP of the Rocky Mountain Region for Mantis Technology Group. I am excited to promote our Pulse Analytics social media monitoring and sentiment analysis solution as well as our core software development and business intelligence services. I enjoy teaching and coaching, watching football and basketball, and playing tennis. I graduated UT-Austin. You can find Brian on .

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Bernie Zanoni
Bernie Zanoni

Well thought out and I love the vidios to prove the point.


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