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Social Media – Team Depth versus Star Players

If you haven’t deduced it from my earlier posts, I’m a team guy.  Yeah, it is nice to occasionally see Peyton Manning or JR Smith become human highlight reels with sheer genius and ability.

However, we’ve also seen athletes like Carmelo Anthony and Terrell Owens disrupt a team for the sake of their own statistics, ego and endorsements.

When the Denver Nuggets traded Melo, I was one of the few people who was ecstatic…especially when I saw the list of team-minded players coming to the Nuggets as part of the trade. I enjoyed several of Melo’s games and effort for the last 7 years (he is a true star), but I also became disenchanted with his “sticky hands” when the ball got passed to him.  I could always look at the box score after a loss, see about 14 assists, and Melo going about 6-20 for the night.  People would say he didn’t have talent around him, but now I see wins with 20-30 assists per game, and 6-8 players scoring in double-figures!  It comes down to the Power of the Assist.

So, Team Depth or Superstar for your Social Media?  Here are the reasons I vote for Team Depth:

  1. Everybody has an “off-day” or gets injured.  What happens when a superstar has a bad day?  The team generally loses.  What happens if a blogger for your company gets writer’s block, takes maternity leave or goes on vacation (or worse…leaves your company)?  Your brand loses! Develop several people within your company who can champion your goals through blogs.  Even if you have one primary blogger, it helps to have guest bloggers just to add a different perspective while maintaining a consistent overall company message.
  2. Different players can rise to the occasion depending upon style of play.  Will the style of play be free-flowing offense, or stingy defense?  Will you need strong post play or 3-point shooting? I frequently conduct demos of our Pulse Analytics product, and it really indicates how different demographics gravitate to different social media channels.  Or how people may post their positive feedback in the form of a video on YouTube or Facebook, but post negative feedback in a knee jerk reaction on Twitter or blog/review site. Therefore, it is important to monitor all the channels where your customer is talking about you, so you can meet them where they are and either acknowledge a shout-out or address a customer satisfaction issue.
  3. You can double-team to shutdown a superstar. You beat a superstar by double-teaming, trapping and generally just frustrating them.  I will never encourage going after a competitor personally or attacking a brand.  I will vote to beat them fair-n-square with intelligence, work ethic and a superior product/service.  The best way to accomplish this is the multi-channel approach to accelerate your mentions/retweets/likes/shares.  Eventually, news about your products/services are showing up in people’s news feeds and status updates...and the updates are coming from your network of followers versus just you!  THAT IS TEAMWORK!

So what are you doing to get your team/tribe involved? Are you building and cultivating depth in your social media strategy vs focusing exclusively on a single channel or individual? I look forward to your comments.

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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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2 comments
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Brian Vickery
Brian Vickery

Mark, you had some great examples. I definitely like Brees (and Peyton Manning for that matter). Even as I write this, Melo went for 42 pts and 17 rebounds to keep NY in the game. I like my stars being people that lead with the assist: Ty Lawson growing into this, Jason Kidd and Steve Nash been doing it for years, and QBs like Brees and Manning spread that ball around to get everyone involved. They truly go mult-channel!

Mark Johnson
Mark Johnson

Well "played" Brian. I agree that, generally, teamwork is the best way to achieve a goal...like winning. But sometimes a superstar is needed. Sometimes a superstar is needed to take owner a game. Someone to give everyone hope. Someone to thread an impossible needle to create a spark. Someone to make the sale that no one else could. The trick is making everyone else better while the superstar builds confidence. Drew Brees does this, GSP does this, Problogger does that, and Ben Franklin did it better than anyone. And they all do it humbly (okay humble may not have always Ben's strong suit). Problem is that some people define superstars by using guys like Mello, TO, Ocho-Johnson (no relation), and even King James as examples. I think, while great players to be sure, they aren't superstars because they don't always make others around them better and very rarely are the team's shortcomings their fault. And humble is only something they know when you put a mic in their face (okay, except Mello, TO, 85, and maybe even KJ).

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