28 Hot Tips on Giving Bland Social Media Tips

28 Over Used Social Media Tips - The Anti-Social MediaIf you read any of the major blogs on social media or blogging, you likely encounter the same group of tips about blogging and social media every week. These range from the practical, to the insane, and the just plain useless. We can do better than boring, rehashed tips.

Social media mastery does not come from one or two sentence hints, tips and pointers. It comes from knowing how people think, reacting to their conversations, and understanding the tools and mediums of conversation. People who break down the nuances of complex human interactions into quick tidbits of information are sociopaths in disguise.

So, I present my grand list of 28 tips on giving social media tips. If you see anything resembling this list: run away as fast as you can.

  1. Have a tip about using blog post titles that are creative and stand out. - Because the easiest thing in the world is to tell someone to be creative.
  2. Follow that tip with a bunch of formulaic post titles. - X Tips to make (insert superlative) Posts on (inset social network).
  3. Make your tips as vague and unspecific as possible. - You want readers to come back tomorrow, so give them the idea that if they keep coming back, or search your site for more, they will be able to fill in the details. Or even better, get them to pay for your ebook.
  4. Make your tips so generic they can be applied to anything - “Write compelling content. Tell stories. Engage. Connect.” These words are so bland and vague right now can be applied to your blog or your dog.
  5. Have a tip about giving your content personality - If we don’t tell people to write with personality, they all write like mindless robots who don’t make typos.
  6. Give your tips explanations - You’ve already boiled the point down, but some people are masochists and just want more.
  7. Don’t give your tips explanations
  8. Focus your tips on one subject - Readers apparently like organization, clarity, and digesting one thing at a time.
  9. Don’t focus your tips on one subject - Ok fine, just give out as many tips as you can under the guise of one subject.
  10. Have at least one tip about Twitter - Because Social Media folks love Twitter and talking about Twitter. This one will surely grab their attention.
  11. Have another one about Twitter - Just incase the other hint fails, keep this one as a back up.
  12. Have one tip about Facebook - Apparently there are 600 million people using this website that people may want to sell and talk to. Don’t ignore the opportunity to corrupt them.
  13. Have another tip about Facebook. - Really, 600 million people is a lot of people. One tip isn’t enough.
  14. Have at least one more Tip about Facebook - Just keep throwing Facebook tips out there. People use Facebook when they poop, so they’re looking for as much as they can about it.
  15. Have one tip about LinkedIn - Don’t forget the professionals. They need tips too. While the rest of us may behave like angry gorillas, we need them to employ us.
  16. Have a tip about some social network no one actually uses - A true social media guru evangelizes a network no one has heard of or cares about. Find that network and advocate for it, even when they ask you to stop after the network shut down.
  17. Tell people to put more share buttons on their site - Make your readers ignore good taste and design so they think their site is more social.
  18. Have one nugget about SEO - Because there’s nothing more fun than watching simpletons get confused with canonicalization and 301 redirects.
  19. Say something about success metrics - Say something about how to measure success, preferably with as many meaningless buzzwords as you possibly can.
  20. Talk about comments - Because everyone wants comments more than anything else. Just the mere mention of comments will stimulate comments.
  21. Talk about getting more comments - Comments on more comments? All I see is even more comments!
  22. Talk about getting better comments - A good comment is hard to find. Tell people who to force their readers to write better.
  23. Say something about proofreading - Because every blog is professional and one typo will ruin you forever because bloggers never make mistakes. Ever.
  24. Write about the importance and use of links - Say something about how links are important and show people you like them because people can’t figure this out on their own.
  25. Warn people about using too many links - You can’t have too much of a good thing.
  26. Say something about a call to action - Assume your readers are lazy imbeciles who can’t take actions on their own based on information given. Give them the way forward in bright neon lights.
  27. Tell people to end with a question - Having a complete thought while on a social network is too advanced for most people.
  28. End your tip post asking readers for their tips - This goes back to #21 #26, and #27. Give those readers a clear action to take.

So, what are your generic social media tips? Have any pointers on giving those little nuggets of insight?


40 Responses to “28 Hot Tips on Giving Bland Social Media Tips”

  1. Björn Sennbrink February 3, 2011 at 6:40 am #

    Ask you readers for more cowbell

    • Brianne February 3, 2011 at 9:03 am #

      You can never have enough cowbell.

      • MKR February 3, 2011 at 9:04 am #

        The optimum cowbell ratio is ∞:1

        • Brianne February 3, 2011 at 9:06 am #

          Good to know. *writes it in Moleskine*

          • The Naked Redhead February 3, 2011 at 9:43 am #

            Best comment thread ever.

          • Brianne February 3, 2011 at 10:52 am #

            TNR, I’m loving your site. I believe I will Twitter stalk you.

          • Jay February 4, 2011 at 1:09 am #

            There is nothing I can add to this thread, except MORE COWBELL.

  2. John Morrow February 3, 2011 at 7:04 am #

    Ha, it’s too true. I wrote about the same thing yesterday:


    It drives me nuts how many people do this - it’s lazy and useless. “Ooooo, I’ll do a post on how to make you headline sparkle”. Fuck off - write something original and actually helpful.

    And finally, should I end my post with a question?

    • Jay February 4, 2011 at 1:12 am #

      Sparkling headlines. That is definitely tomorrow’s post.

  3. MKR February 3, 2011 at 8:14 am #

    I see what you did there.

    • Jay February 4, 2011 at 1:17 am #

      I see what you commented here.

  4. Craig February 3, 2011 at 8:55 am #

    15.5 — Have one tip about YouTube and Flickr. Because social media is about video and photos, too.

    ??.? — Have a tip that mentions Brian Solis. Or maybe Seth Godin, too. Just because.

    28.1 — Finish off by emphasizing that this is all just the tip of the social media iceberg.

    • Robin February 3, 2011 at 10:37 am #


    • Ashley Sue February 3, 2011 at 12:59 pm #

      Yes… you must mention the tip to read, mention, and live by everything Seth Godin and Brian Solis. I really like that addition.

      • Jay February 3, 2011 at 1:21 pm #

        How are we forgetting Chris Brogan in this mix?

        • Danny Brown February 3, 2011 at 8:54 pm #

          You can only have so many [insert your own description here] in one space.

          • Jay February 4, 2011 at 1:08 am #

            Good point. We can’t have every bozo who made a dollar off Twitter on this list.

    • Jay February 4, 2011 at 1:18 am #

      How did I forget YouTube? Oh yeah, I’m afraid I’ll find another haul video. And that’s just the tip of the iceberg.

      • Craig February 4, 2011 at 1:50 pm #


        … because you can’t live without getting a tour of his office

        (Actually I only posted that so I can ask this: Am I the only one who thinks Brogan’s avatar makes him look like Jeffrey Ross?)

  5. Pat Kent February 3, 2011 at 9:46 am #

    28.2 - Keeping your tip list as vague as possible so that it applies to absolutely everyone. “10 reasons your dipshit company fails at social media”. …. Actually if the title really did use the term “dipshit company” i would probably open it just to spite myself.

    • Jay February 4, 2011 at 1:23 am #

      You also included the “Neg your Reader” tactic.

  6. Chelsea Junget February 3, 2011 at 9:53 am #

    What about the tip that it’s right for everyone and you are so behind and your business is going to fail if you don’t have a FB page? I see a lot of that and little acknowledgment that it’s a tactic and not a solution.

    • Jay February 4, 2011 at 1:19 am #

      Remember how businesses made billions before Facebook? Those were hard times for businesses.

  7. Steve Allan February 3, 2011 at 10:01 am #

    Be sure to add variations on your tips…wait…you did that…with 12-14 and 20-22. You hit the nail on the head with #4…I think..so many numbers. I LOVE all the experts who tell me to be more compelling. Really? Thanks! Oh, and HOW do I do that?

    • Jay February 4, 2011 at 1:20 am #

      By compelling me. Or mugging me.

  8. Morgan February 3, 2011 at 11:50 am #

    There needs to be a revolution!

    …Because I have fallen pray.

    I think the problem with most of us, especially new bloggers, is that we rely so much on listening to what other bloggers (who are popular) have to say. And by the time we find those bloggers, the content has been overused, but we keep using that same content over and over again and it becomes one big vicious circle.

    Ok, from now on, I’m going to do what I think is awesome. Period.


    • Pat Kent February 3, 2011 at 12:47 pm #

      Ah, glad to meet a fellow newbie! I checked out your blog, I like the octopus :-)

      • Morgan February 3, 2011 at 3:59 pm #

        Hey Pat!

        Thanks! Us newbies need like a ‘newbie’ bloggers website. Or something. Hah.

        Omg! I love your website!!! :)

        • Pat Kent February 3, 2011 at 4:28 pm #

          Thank you! I agree, united we stand!

    • Jay February 4, 2011 at 1:25 am #

      Blog for yourself. Everyone else on the internet doesn’t count.

  9. Paul Sutton February 3, 2011 at 1:57 pm #

    My top tip #29 Don’t write blog posts giving tips to those who write blog posts giving tips. Oh, hang on…

    Um, guilty of #19. In fact, writing a follow up post to that post today. So twice guilty. But as double jeopardy is outlawed, I’ll only take one pasting for it. Although the original paste did slate those talking about social media measurement - does that count? Probably. Bugger…

    • Jay February 3, 2011 at 8:54 pm #

      We’ll be indicting you tomorrow.

  10. Claire Wagner February 3, 2011 at 3:23 pm #

    Of course, you follow best practices by giving a rather large number that is not a multiple of 5 or 10, but an odd number would have been better. Cut #22 and you’ll be good.

    • Claire Wagner February 3, 2011 at 3:25 pm #

      FYI - which, roughly translated, means, “I forgot to say something so I’m bothering you again” - I hate numbered post titles but the only one I’ve ever written got the most comments of any blog post. Still a pitiful amount, but the most for me.

      • Jay February 3, 2011 at 8:42 pm #

        Numbers do work to get attention. It’s like people refuse to read but can process digits all of a sudden.

  11. Dino Dogan February 3, 2011 at 3:56 pm #

    amen brother Jay….amen. And you post this on the day Im working on my 5 ways to improve your blog post lol…thnx for keeping my ass in check bro :-)

    • Jay February 4, 2011 at 1:28 am #

      I write these just for you actually.

  12. Patricia@lavenderuses February 4, 2011 at 2:26 am #

    Visit 100 blogs in a day to get more comments on your blog…even though I got no more traffic when I did that! And the comments were ??!!

    You’ve visited 100 blogs in a day, got not more traffic. Good now see if you can visit 150-200 blogs tomorrow!!!

    Patricia Perth Australia

  13. Jeffry Pilcher | TheFinancialBrand.com February 5, 2011 at 10:40 am #

    Jay, this satire explains why I stopped reading Problogger.

  14. Anrkist February 10, 2011 at 3:48 pm #

    I see what you did there with #22 and #23. I was aghast when I saw that typo but it was done all for the sake of satire, so it’s all good.

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