Okay, not really – but it could happen. Here we go – my very own social marketing test in action…

It’s strange to have been in search marketing and professional business consulting for 10 years, and currently work in a market (search) that is practically untouchable – yet be laid off.

Thankfully, though I do consider myself a thought leader, and I was the only person at my previous employer that could do what I do; I never once felt that I was personally untouchable, or free from job loss. The economy is just too volatile.

There were definitely some bad decisions made regarding my pink-slip, but I wasn’t the only recent cut – and that’s personal anyway, so I’ll keep this post focused on what it is… the beginning of a real-time Social Media Job Hunt (SMJH) test and case study.

If you’d like to follow the process and see how effective connections, networking, and viral marketing can be on a personal level, please follow me at:

· Twitter (Scottorth) = http://twitter.com/scottorth

· LinkedIn = http://www.linkedin.com/in/scottorth

· FaceBook = Scott Orth

· Personal Site = www.ScottOrth.com

Early results…

On Twitter

I had early success with a couple of Twitter connections; like getting Li Evans to connect me with Mark Knowles of Smart Solution within just a few minutes of a tweet. I’ve had two initial discussions with companies on my first day laid off due to Twitter… not bad

Two leads is great – but with over 100 pairs of eyes (followers) watching, one might expect better exposure. If you’re not familiar with Twitter, first – 100 followers isn’t really all that much. But you need to spend a LOT of time posting comments to really build it up any higher.

Another problem is that when you tweet, your message goes live in a message stream or thread immediately. If someone is watching the thread, or they have notifications setup, they may see your message. If they don’t see it at the moment it’s posted, they may never see it, as other tweets keep streaming in and yours gets buried. How do you battle this? You retweet your message over and over, and ask a few of your followers to do the same. This way your message keeps getting out there and just might get greater exposure.

On LinkedIn

LinkedIn is probably the best professional networking system online. That said, it has failed me thus far. Now, it’s only day two of the layoff, so anything can happen; but it has opened my eyes to a significant problem with how people use LinkedIn.

I found it useful in locating job listings, and finding who in my network was connected with employees and managers of said job listings. This is what LinkedIn is suppose to be all about – using your connections to get you connected to the right people. But here’s where it failed…

I sent emails to over two-dozen personal contacts (people I really do know), who were connected via LinkedIn to folks within organizations I wanted to speak with. Out of the two-dozen, only one…that’s ONE! Person actually knew a contact within the companies. Everyone else responded with messages like, “I really don’t know her, sorry.”, or “I’ve never actually met him, but I could send him a message.”

Really? You could send him a message? If you don’t know him and he doesn’t know you, what’s the point? I might as well throw rocks at his office window and hope to get an appointment.

Through this, I realized that I have done the same thing. I was so focused on growing my network that I invited everyone I’ve ever come in contact with and accepted every invitation ever received. FAIL! This is not networking, and it actually makes the “its-who-you-know” part of LinkedIn worthless. I now have about 170 direct connections, but over 3.7 million people in my network. 3.7 million; but it seems only about 10 of my connections really matter.

On Facebook

Facebook has already created one connection, post lay-off. But oddly, it’s because of Twitter…my tweets are posted on Facebook so my facebook people, who may not necessarily be my Twitter followers, are also seeing what I’m up to.

The great thing about Facebook is that, if you use it like I do, you’re more careful about whom you connect to. These are actually people you know, who you’d like to share your professional and personal life with. Therefore, when you post a message like, “I need help”, you’re more likely to have friends and colleagues jump in and help.

Now what do I do?

Well, as the title of the above section read… “Early results”. It’s too early to truly pass judgment, but I have quickly learned a few things that can be done better, and that I will focus on moving forward.

The test has only just begun. This post is also a part of the test, so let’s see what happens. Follow me on Twitter (scottorth) to keep up, and I’ll post a follow up when I have something significant to report.

Stay up to date by following daily posts:

Day One Wrap Up

Day Two Wrap Up

Day Three Wrap Up

Day Four Wrap Up

Additional wrap ups coming soon. Stay tuned…

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