I don’t know about you, but I LOVE politics. I really do. I liked it so much that when I went off to school, that was the degree I chose…twice. I grew up watching my grandparents entertain, support and work for gubernatorial, senatorial and presidential candidates; I thought it was how everyone lived. Fast forward to today, and you’ll find that my business even works on a campaign or two from time to time.
I’ll bet very few of you knew that, did you?
You know why? Because I don’t promulgate the Facebook or Twitter streams, or my blog, with political views. I know many people do. Good for them. But for me, in the business that I’m in, the only views I need to share are those that help my clients do a better job or enhance their bottom line. Period. Well, that and some cute kid photos and stories, but even then, there’s a business relevancy to it.
I sound like Bill Dorman, don’t I? I’m sorry, it was just too easy to throw that one up on the headline. Plus, it was his birthday this week and I’ve been remiss in visiting him, so I thought I’d pay homage.
Last week, I moved my office, after almost five years in the same spot (with a brief hiatus at home with baby #2), to a new location. In a word, it was time to go. We needed more space and well, it felt like it was time to evolve from the cozy little consultant shop I had inhabited for so long to a ‘grown up’ business location that allowed for expansion and looked more like the business model I am working towards – one that is sustainable and not completely reliant on yours truly to survive.
I had a small sign at my previous location, but nothing to write home about. It was a marker on a building in a downtown area, as it should be. I moved to a more medical/residential part of our town, on a corner, with a lot of drive by traffic. I suddenly was presented with the opportunity to have a BIG sign. Whoa. Big flipping deal here.
Please welcome my friend and esteemed colleague, Jayme Soulati, to Spot On today. She has graciously offered (and mightily delivered) a guest post for me in my absence. Enjoy and comment!
This is not a “don’t eat hamburger laced with pink slime” blog post (that needs a bunch of hyphens to make it grammatically correct). I know that if Shakirah Dawud or Jenn Whinnem were reading, they’d catch me in the lazy act and chastise me with a correction, eh, Ladies?
This post, rather, is all about how this issue is presented as a blogger. I was in a squirrely mood a bit ago and decided to draft a blog post about the social media blame game and pink slime. Social media was taking the brunt of the evil doings against pink slimers, and as a result, governors decided to take control of the message (but, did they) and issue statements to reverse negative perception.
What I wrote, was what I thought was a comedic blog post about the issue (with my thoughts against pink slime obviously laced throughout the content). I didn’t research the issue to present facts; I focused on social media instead. But, my community took the facts and presented them front and center.
What was supposed to be a funnier blog post with what I expected (first mistake) would be equally humorous comments became a lesson for me in perception versus reality as a blogger. I was called to task for not looking deeper at the issue with the pros and cons of the substance being used as lean-meat filler.
I set out to write a post that wasn’t about the situation; it was about social media’s power over the situation.
What a blogger expected to happen didn’t; readers took an opposing view of the issue and said so. What a fascinating lesson in perception versus reality among bloggers and readers.
Have you ever had a blog post you intended to write with one message and it was read in a different way? That is my lesson as a blogger of two years; never assume that what you’re writing will be perceived the way you want. It’s kinda like the glass half empty or half full conundrum.
Now, that said, let’s do revisit pink slime from a PR crisis communications standpoint for a minute.
I know this situation is a tipping point in favor of anti-beef. Look how forcefully the topic went viral, and look, too, at how many days it took for the beef industry and manufacturers to strategize with public relations professionals on the approach, to craft the message and issue the news. Days went by; or maybe it was 36 hours?
Regardless; anything more than six hours in social media is essentially a lifetime.
As a blogger, I typically stay away from hot-bed issues like this. Because I didn’t, here are some key takeaways for bloggers everywhere:
Jayme Soulati is a frequent visitor in this community who rabble rouses the comments which turns into BlogJacking. Those days may be over, but she’s always ready for blog banter. You can find her all over the interwebz and primarily blogging at Soulati-‘TUDE! via http://soulati.com.