As you will see — and hopefully have seen — from this blog post series, I believe there are many misconceptions when it comes to the power, potential and limitations about social media.

One of the biggest challenges social media consultants have faced is explaining the business value of social. Updating statuses and sending Tweets is all well and good. But how does that help you with your practice? How does that help your partners be more effective, or service your clients in a highly competitive landscape?

Recently a non-CPA colleague wanted to know how I could help her. I asked what she was trying to accomplish and she said, “I want to create buzz about my product.”

So I asked her, “What does ‘create buzz’ mean to you?”

“Well,” she said, “I want people to talk about my product.”

“And,” I continued, “If people talk about your product, then what?”

She quickly knew where I was going: simply talking about your accounting practice, or having others talk about your practice, is great and can be good for reputation management. But it should not be an explicit goal because buzz can’t pay your bills.

Folks, buzz is for bees. You want the honey. And the honey is money.

The best way I have been able to generate business value with social media is through lead generation. Again, I will show you how to do this later.

Meanwhile, the next time a social media consultant — or anyone else for that matter — tells you they want to generate buzz about you and your practice, ask them how buzz translates to business results.

Oh, and don’t ask your youngest accountant to do your social media. More on that in our next post.

photo credit: 092 Apis Mellifera via photopin (license)