Why I Would Never Hire A Social Media Expert.
By Luke Clark
Tuesday, 15th November 2011
WIT winning debater, and editor of Discovery Channel Magazine, Luke Clark argues that for most of us mortals, social media is best left for socialising. (This is the argument he shared at the WIT Conference.)

• A social media expert is like a "casual Olympian". Nothing as amorphous, random and ever-changing as this realm has any real experts yet.

• Second of all, if there really are true experts available, why are they for hire? Granted, I might hire Mark Zuckerberg if he weren't so busy – but you know what? The few real experts in social media simply aren't "for hire".

• My next point is, have we lost track of what social media is actually for? It is for socialising, for goodness sake. I'm not hiring someone to go to the movies. I didn't hire someone to go out and meet the woman I ended up marrying. Hiring someone to be social for me is simply a dereliction of my social duty – you want to interact as a brand? Go and be social yourself.

• Plus, would you want to be anything but casual on Facebook? Why would you really want a serious, monetised, stretegised, itemised – automatic, hydromatic, grease lightning campaign? On Facebook? Is it because that's what your customers want? Or because a social media "expert" told you so?

• Let's face it. Most of the things about social media aren't that difficult. Answer a question on Facebook. Post a quick tweat in a "hip and happening" style. Don't be fooled – because I print out a metallic blue name card with the work title of SOCIAL OVERLORD and buy bean-bags for my meeting room, doesn't make my tweets any more effective than yours.

• If you went to the doctor with a stomach ache, would you want a doctor who only looked at people with stomach aches? What if the stomach ache was related to a condition in your throat? Or heart? Instead, general practitioner – or a TCM doctor – would have holistic training on all conditions. So if you really need an expert, hire a media expert – social or otherwise.

• Think about this seriously. What are you doing? You spend all your week trying to get your staff to stay off social media. Then you pay someone whose main claim to fame is that they've spent the last four years wasting their time on it?

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