Well, it appears y’all liked last week’s inaugural Beal Deal interview with Lisa Barone, so let’s keep this going, shall we?
In the hot seat this week is someone with perhaps the best Twitter bio you’ll ever read: “Author, Speaker and kind of a big deal on a fairly irrelevant soc media site which inflates my self-importance.” I’m talking about none other than Scott Stratten aka Unmarketing. When Scott’s not authoring best selling books, he’s helping businesses to avoid looking like social media buffoons.
In case you don’t know the drill, I ask six questions that are designed to challenge, educate and entertain. So, let’s get to it!
Q1. Twitter is such a great fit for you and you have 140k+ followers that agree. What in the world did you do before you discovered Twitter?
I was very lonely. Like a lot of us online geeks, I was doing social media before it was called that. We called it “talking” or “chatting”. Using sites like Ryze and message boards/forums. I’ve always been fascinated by communities, online and off. Oh, and ran a viral marketing agency.
Q2. You admit that auto-following people in your early days of Twitter is something you regret. What’s been you biggest success with Twitter and how can we lesser tweeps learn from it?
My biggest secret though is my reply rate. 78% of my tweets are replies.
Whoa, slow down. I admit to auto-following BACK people. Big difference! My biggest success with Twitter is that it’s attached to all my current success. You can’t really use me as a case study though since I’m inside the bubble. I’m successful on Twitter because I talk about Twitter, on Twitter. That doesn’t mean your dental office will work the same on it. My biggest secret though is my reply rate. 78% of my tweets are replies. That’s after more than 90,000 tweets, that percentage has stayed constant. Twitter is a conversation, not a dictation. My biggest personal success with it is the people I’ve built relationships with. I joined it in 2008 to find other business owners to connect with since all my friends worked for other people. I’ve found more supportive, brilliant, hilarious people through Twitter than all my other places online combined.
Q3. How much of “Unmarketing” is the real Scott Stratten? Are you this highly strung and opinionated when not on Twitter?
Let’s just say I’m a real treat to be around. It’s not a persona, this is me. I think it’s a problem when you’re different on stage versus virtual versus in person. I’m passionate about things anywhere I am. I’m probably more laid back than people realize but do get fired up all the time.
Q4. You’ve been vocal against many new technologies, such as QR codes and the video upstart Vine. Which tool or service, that you’ve mocked, has surprised you the most with its success?
Any tool I’ve mocked has failed after I mocked it. I’m the tech Nostradamus.
Any tool I’ve mocked has failed after I mocked it. I’m the tech Nostradamus. I kid, I kid. Vine kills me. It just came out and people are saying they see incredible business applications. You know what I see? 12seconds, but even shorter. Video, above all else, is the hardest medium to create content in successfully as far as I’m concerned. So now instead of you taking a picture of your food, you’re going to film it? Right. In regards to what has surprised me, Farmville certainly brought in a big bucks for a while.
Q5. You’ve written two great books now. What’s the one chapter from either that every marketer should be forced to read and why?
Third Circle for sure. It goes into why things go viral and why your crappy corporate videos don’t.
Q6. You’re vehemently against scheduling tweets on Twitter. Why is that and is there any time that it’s appropriate?
There are countless examples of train-wrecks where companies didn’t turn off scheduled tweets during sensitive times
It’s like sending a mannequin with a Post-It note to a networking event. Your brand is “there” but not really. There are countless examples of train-wrecks where companies didn’t turn off scheduled tweets during sensitive times (http://www.unmarketing.com/2012/06/16/worst-scheduled-tweet-timing-ev er/ ) that the benefit you gain from absent-tweeting outweighs the negatives. What it’s telling people is you don’t have time to engage, but you should listen to them. Kind of goes against the word “social”, doesn’t it? What is so important it HAS TO be sent at a specific time, but not important enough that you don’t have to be there when the majority of the response to a tweet is in the first three minutes?
Thanks Scott! See you next week folks for another Beal Deal interview!
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The Beal Deal with Scott Stratten (@Unmarketing)