Saturday, April 21, 2012

Welcome to the world of Social media where PEOPLE ACTUALLY HOLD THE POWER!

Last one week has been not the kind what I’ve been used to. That can be attributed to the transition to work from college. The initial euphoria did not last or to better put it never came. What has been going on is the hangover from college and Delhi.

But that has once again given me time to write and read stuff I used to miss because of lack of time, and even find new avenues. Of course one of the biggest thing making headlines has been Abhishek Manu Singhvi’s so called Sex Tape (Gone are the good old days when we had Paris Hilton sex tapes). He did went pillar to pillar trying to protect it and protect he did from the electronic media, Youtube. But suddenly it popped up all over the Internet and links were spreading like wildfire on Social Media webistes. And like one of my friends once said this is the best time for Brand Manager as because of the social media the brand has totally gone out of control and you can’t do anything now, Abhishek Manu Singhvi could do nothing.

He started using the clich├ęs like its doctored, fabricated to tarnish my image and more. And then I happened to land on a podcast called All India Bakchod by two good upcoming standup comedians Gursimran Khamba and Tanmay Bhat. It had everything that can and will make people Abhishek Manu Singhvi call online freedom obscene, they frequently talked about taboo stuff like sex, gay love and much more. In one of their interviews on the net and they said the reason they picked up podcast over all other forms to reach their audience was because of the freedom it provides in terms of content.

So there you go we’ve Kapil Sibal all charged up to limit our freedom or in order words to safeguard their (the few powerful ones) backs. India is no doubt increasingly becoming an oligarchy, but Social Media has suddenly sprung up and made ordinary people powerful. We have unknowns worshipped as Gods on Twitter, who defiantly hold more influence than a cabinet minister on the Youngistan.

One might feel it’s a matter of time before one force gets heavier, but social media might just become like crowsourced media, remain the 4th pillar of our democracy and do what the media is supposed to, or cannot do. Powerful men are feeling helpless against its might, but finally power has arrived in the hands of people as it should have been.

What is your GQ?

Yeah go ahead, take a guess. It’s not General Quotient and not even Gentleman’s quotient. And if you haven’t already Googled, it is Google Quotient.

Last week at NASSCOM Emerge’s Friday 2.0, the discussion was on personal branding. When asked what is brand, one of the answers that have stuck with me is your brand is what Google says about you. But seriously how many of us have actually Googled ourselves? It really throws up some weird and unimagined things sometimes. Like when I Googled myself except for the usual suspects like My social media profiles, blog etc I saw my name also appeared from my college’s newsletter as I used to write for it in those days.

Just then it struck me whenever I go to any conference or to any meeting, I end up googling the speaker as I did this time also. It just made me extra aware what my online presence meant. So I decided to list down somethings which anyone could do to enhance one’s personal brand online. These are not mine strictly, I did up a lot of them from my people I met or interacted online. Here they are 

  1. Social media presence is hygiene and all have that. What matters is content. Are you an influencer on your friends (Facebook), followers (Twitter). What do you write about? And opinions do matter. Look at this article for some of the big influencers on Twitter.
  2. The idea is to set oneself apart. Knowing what’s happening is just the starting. Like Joey from my beloved Friends you don’t need to buy a whole volume of Encyclopedia for that today. You can just follow some blogs or just simply go to Wikipedia. But more than digesting so much of content its necessary to produce some also. It is a two way street now. So create a blog and have a post up at least every fortnight.
  3. The usual things like being funny, being a good story teller, writing even the most mundane topics in a storytelling manner always helps.
  4. Comment on other blogs and make relationships. Once I just posted a comment on another blog. The comment had my blog link and I suddenly saw my blog’s traffic doubled in a week because of that, but here also quality scores over quantity.
  5. Stay fresh and keep on updating your social life or people will stop coming to your blog and followers will unfollow you.
  6. Have a metric in mind to know that you are really growing. Like the comments on any  post, pageviews etc. It can be anything but not everything.

And one last thing, Follow me on @Jatt_On_Hunt ;)