There’s always something to howl about

What if Twitter and Facebook go Away – Do you have an Exit Strategy?

Chris Pearson is a pretty smart dood.  He’s the developer of the Thesis theme that I use on all of my blogs.  It’s a pretty cool premium theme…but I’m not here to pitch WordPress themes.

Yesterday I received and email announcing some proposed changes in the next version of Thesis and in this email it included a link to a Video interview with Chris Pearson.

For the first 3 minutes, most of the talk is about changes to the Thesis theme….and then it gets interesting.

He starts to talk about the future of Twitter and Facebook and poses some very interesting hypotheses.

Here’s the video (can’t embed the vid for some reason, so check it out and come back) – go ahead and jump to about 3:08 to get to the good stuff.  Then, let’s talk about it.

Chris Pearson Interview - The future of Twitter and Facebook

Ok, so Chris brings up some pretty interesting points right?  I mean, think about how massive of a push there is for the to jump into the almighty Facebook Fan Page and Twitter stream life rafts to float safely to the shores through turbulent real estate seas.

Do you think that Facebook and Twitter care how or why you contribute content?  No, they could care less.  These are popularity contests to see who can get the most groupies.  Once these communities gain celebrity status, they are finally in a position to execute on their end game…..find an investor.

What is an investor going to do?  Use the traffic to the community as leverage to sell advertising or sell subscriptions to generate revenue.  Do you think either of these sites will ask you first if it’s ok if they use their platform for this reason?

Remember when Facebook tried to change their terms of service to say that all of the content on the site was 100% owned by them and could be used any way they see fit?  Do you really think that just by changing the verbiage in the terms of service that it changes the way they view your content?

I know there are hundreds of Twitter and Facebook snake oil salesmen out there crafting the next great real estate survival tool to sell to the rest of us, and good luck to them – I support the right of anyone brave enough to enter the free market system to sell their goods and services.

My personal belief is that most of these solutions are only shiny objects catching our eye, our attention, and providing a false sense of security that could be pulled out from under you without notice at the whim of a volatile young internet nerd that has absolutely no sense of how to build a business based on a viable revenue and profit producing model.

What I ask you to consider is this….Who owns your content?  What’s your exit strategy if Facebook and Twitter are no longer “cool” or become a part of some other company’s business model?  Do you still have an internet presence?  Will your business model change?  Will you lose your “black book” of prospects?  Do you lose all of your content?

I know it’s hard work to build a “community” online, but if you want to be where consumers are, you have to do it.  There are no short cuts or silver bullets.  Marketing is marketing and sales is sales – These fundamental facts will never change.  The only thing that changes is how you reach out to your prospects, how they find you, what they see when they find you.

If you’re going to put this much work (aka – how much time a day do you spend on Facebook and Twitter) are you investing in your long term marketing, branding and sales strategy or are ya just having fun?

If you’re not rubbin bellies or skinning cats….my guess is that the latter would probably best describe your social media strategy.

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