Get the Led Out: Social Media Lessons from Led Zeppelin
by Kyle Akerman
One of the greatest rock bands of all time was secretly doling out social media advice well before its time.
While scrolling through the songs in my iTunes library the other day, I came across my collection of Led Zeppelin tracks. And by collection of tracks, I mean every song from all 10 of their albums – yeah, I’m a fan. Well I must have been thinking about social media and community building as I skimmed through the list of songs, because a number of the titles started to speak to me about those exact topics.
As I began listening to some of the band’s classic tracks, it hit me. Led Zeppelin is not only one of the greatest rock bands of all time, but Plant, Page, Jones and Bonham also knew a little about how to run a social media community.
So in the spirit of the great content over at 12Most.com, here are the 12 most important lessons Led Zeppelin song titles can teach us about building and maintaining a social media community.
Your Time is Gonna Come
We all want to have hundreds, maybe thousands of followers in our community, but a following doesn’t happen overnight. Well, unless you are Charlie Sheen. It takes time to grow your community organically. The whole process is a marathon, not a sprint. Don’t be in a rush to build your network. Identify the networks and people that will benefit your business the most, produce quality content, and share and engage with them. With time, patience, good content and perhaps a little luck, you will begin to see your network grow.
Whole Lotta Love
In order to grow your online presence, you need to show your community love—yeah, love—on a consistent, but non-spammy basis. Share great content. Share your knowledge and experience. Foster discussions. Answer questions. Recommend people. Feature your important followers. Promote others doing great work in your industry and in social media. Everyone appreciates being loved.
Hey Hey What Can I Do
Listen to what your community is saying and do your best to give them what they want. Better yet, you should ask them what they would like to see from you. Find out what problems keep them up at night and then give them the solutions.
How Many More Times
You may ask yourself, “How many blog posts, comments, Twitter chats, Facebook updates do I need to create in order to see my presence flourish?” Unfortunately, there is no easy answer. Social media is here to stay, and it’s a continuous communication channel that you need to monitor and participate in if you want to stand out from the crowd. If you take a break, your followers may decide to go elsewhere.
Don’t do this. People have limited time and limited attention spans, so keep your blog posts concise and to the point. Secondly, a big part of running a successful community is listening to your members. It is hard to do this if you are the one doing all the talking.
Dazed and Confused
This is how your community feels if you do not keep a consistent message and tone across your social platforms. Your brand’s identity falters if you are not continuously active, and if you are slow to respond to their questions, requests, etc. And if you are a large company with multiple community managers make it clear to your followers who is communicating with them whenever possible.
Babe I’m Gonna Leave You
Never take your followers for granted. They will leave if you do not provide them value on a regularly basis. If you do not continuously engage with your community in meaningful ways, they will look elsewhere to get what they need.
Bring It On Home
Deliver. Period. Once you figure out the things that keep your community coming back make sure you consistently produce them.
Good Times Bad Times
Your company is going to go through highs and lows, and you need to be engaging with your community during all of them. You can’t disappear when the chips are down. If you are honest and responsive with your community at all times they will usually give you the benefit of the doubt when your company experiences setbacks.
Nobody’s Fault But Mine
When you or your company make a mistake, own up to it. Apologize sincerely and start going about fixing things. Don’t wait to respond to negative events in your organization or brand. If you get ahead of the problem by quickly responding to negative events or even by being first to announce a problem you will be in a much better position than if you wait. The longer you wait the more it looks like you have something to hide.
Be gracious with your followers. Never take them for granted. Thank them for their participation and for being loyal to your community. People enjoy having their contributions recognized.
The Song Remains the Same
Stick to what you know. Your community comes to you for specific reasons, so give them what they want. Always keep in mind that the community listens closely to you, and has come to recognize what makes you or your brand unique. If you stray too far from your followers’ expectations you may start to lose fans.
Wow. I had no idea I could learn so much from one rock band.
So what musical artists inspire you? Let me know in the comments field below!