Top-of-mind awareness key for business, says social media expert

Spencer Smith, a social media consultant, speaker and author, says the goal in business “is not to be the most talented person.”

“You don’t need to practice 10,000 hours to be the best business person; you don’t need to — in my estimation at least — be the most well-known person amongst your competitors,” he said. “The goal is to be the person who is top of mind for the right people at the right time.”

Smith has spoken at the New York Stock Exchange on behalf of Deutsche Bank and instructs students at UW-Madison and Rutgers University. He founded Madison-based Spencer X. Smith Consulting to help companies increase their revenue through higher social media engagement.

He delivered this message at a luncheon held last week by River Valley Bank at the Bishop’s Bay Country Club in Madison. He gave his take on how businesses can get to that top-of-mind space by strategically using social media.

“Success on social media is much more biological than mathematical,” he said. “The number one question aside from what’s the next emerging social media platform is, ‘How often should I post on social media?’ Because this is all just computers, isn’t it? Well, it’s the exact opposite of computers — it’s trying to engage with real-life human beings.”

He explained that many businesses hold back from the social media space for a variety of reasons: they’re afraid of putting effort into a platform that could become obsolete; they want everything they produce to be perfect; they want to avoid public embarrassment, and others.

He argues companies should leave these fears behind because “mistakes will be forgiven.”

“When you’re hesitant to push that submit or share or post or whatever button regardless of platform that you’re on, that is the time to push that button,” he said. “This is important because as you share stuff, what’s going to happen for you is doing things that may or may not work will actually endear you to your target audience.”

–By Alex Moe