The Jerry Maguire Guide For Social Media Professionals

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Social media professionals – What would Jerry Maguire do?

jerry maguire manifesto - Jerry MaguireThere are just some things that should be said.  After all, this is SteamFeed — Marketing, Social Media, and Tech Truth.

In this “Jerry Maguire Moment,” I could lose popularity with other social media professionals once they read this.

But sometimes productive learning comes through intense debate, right?

Field Conditions

I’ve been noticing some of my fellow social media professionals lately.  Or maybe I should state that I’m NOT noticing them:

  • Their social profiles are sparse.
  • Their own social media marketing is inconsistent or non-existent.
  • They’re not keeping up with latest social media trends and developments.

Mainly self-employed consultants.

In short, their habits do not emulate what they would claim to do for their clients.  Put another way, there is not very much to prove they can actually do what they say they can do.

This is alarming to me, as potential customers look to online social proof to gauge a standard.  They want to find value.

If the standard looks unimpressive, that is their idea of industry representation, and this makes things harder for the list of the social media professionals that are actually performing.  As social media marketing is still growing to be a way of doing business for every business, those that are leading by example must work harder as a result, and the evolution is slowed.

So, not “walking the talk” is like wearing the wrong color jersey in the Super Bowl.  You’re letting your team down!

There’s A Flag On The Play

I’ve actually heard the following excuses (each multiple times) as reasons social media professionals are not doing for themselves as they say they do for others:

  •  “I don’t need to.”
  • “I don’t have time.”
  • “My clients want me to spend my time working on their social media rather than my own.”


To me, this translates to, “I don’t want to.”  For me, red flags shoot up, and onto the field!

Lets take a look at each of those plays individually…

Slow Motion Replay

1) “I don’t need to keep my social profiles up.”

So, you don’t believe in leading by example?  Don’t your clients deserve to be served by a professional that has achieved for themselves first?

To this one I say that you are short-changing those you serve.  The world of social media changes fast!  By not allowing your own social networking to be a place where experimentation and learning occurs, the client becomes the guinea pig, and they receive less value for their dollar by hiring and keeping you.

That, my friend, is unfair.

Renee Zellweger Jerry Maguire - crackle.com2) “I don’t have time.”

Not acceptable.  We make time for what is important to us.

This is the same as going onto the football field and not working out or warming up before the big game.

By saying you don’t have time, you are saying you are not willing to invest in your own online reputation – The very steps you would take for your clients.  Lets recall the old saying in management: “Don’t ask people to do things you wouldn’t do yourself.”

3) “My clients want me to spend my time working on their social media rather than my own.”

Of course they do!  But I’d venture a guess that they don’t pay your bills, have your obligations, and are not willing to sign for them.

As long as you are bringing value and completing the objectives in your service agreement, you call the plays.  You are the manager of your team.


Be Your Own Client (Be Your Own Manager)

Someone asked me why I put so much effort into my social networking.  Why I am always consistently pushing to display engaging content on my Facebook Page.

My answer: My Facebook Page is my showcase — It’s the place where I show what I can do on that social network.

One question I have: If you do not want to, or do not prioritize keeping your social profiles current, what are you doing in this line of work?

Another question I’ll re-phrase: When your client asks to discuss what they find on your social profiles, what do you say?  How do you address social proof?

Coaches Tips

It wouldn’t be a SteamFeed post without actionable advice.

Folks, it’s time to put on all of our professional gear, and play for the touchdowns.  Any successful entrepreneur or small business owner will tell you that you probably won’t get eight hours of sleep each night.  It’s up to you to do one of two things:

  • Suck it up and just do it. (Like Nike)
  • Hire someone to help you get ‘er done.

showmethemoney - Jerry Maguire (1)Or, maybe a combination of the two.

So… Do as I say, not as I do?  No way!

The response to all of the three points above is:

Show me the money.

Until social business is a standard for every business, it is the job AND responsibility for all social media professionals to lead by example and display the standard of credible social proof that decision-making business contacts deserve to see.

Anything less qualifies one for a seat on the bench.

Let the social media professionals willing to make the tackles and run the winning plays take the field.

Your turn!

Do you agree?  Disagree?

What pieces of advice did I miss mentioning above?

Please share your thoughts in the comments box below.

How much time do you spend on your personal social media brand each week?

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Keri Jaehnig
Keri Jaehnig is the Founder and CMO at Idea Girl Media, an international Social Media Marketing Agency. Keri helps business brands, non-profits and public figures achieve social media success and positive online reputation. Keri's work has been featured at Forbes and Social Media Today, Search Engine People, and she has been quoted by Business Insider. She also writes for her own blog at In 2013 Keri received a Small Business Influencer Honorable Mention Award, and a commendation for Outstanding Attainment in Social Media from the State of Ohio Senate. Non-fat lattes, travel & quick wit make her smile, and Keri is always enthused to meet new people!
Keri Jaehnig


Social Media Director & Founder @ideagirlmedia helping brands, public figures & non-profits achieve social media marketing success! #coffee #likeableblogs #Ohio
@chievasss Thanks for following! - 14 mins ago
Keri Jaehnig
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  1. The worst is when you go to a 'social media guru's' website and it looks like it's from the 90's… poor ux, poor visuals, poor fonts, poor colors. I just don't get it. I'm in between creating a second blog, since at the moment I write more about my experiences living and traveling in Europe, so I will most likely be spending more time on my personal 'brand' than I currently have been. Great advice, thanks Keri.

    • ideagirlmedia says:

      Oh, my – Tiana, you touch on a good point! Just recently, I too have found websites that are desperately out of date, and the owner is claiming to be an expert. Yikes!

      I look forward to learning more about your brand, and can't wait to see what you create!

      I used to work with international people, and also led educational tours – Would love to know more about your European adventures!! :)

      Thanks for your comment,


      • Ah, yes, I see you love to #travel on Twitter. I look forward to connecting with you there too.

        I moved to Florence last year and have been blogging my way around it has a hobby, but I love tech, how people use tech, how it is developing, which is why I am in the works of creating a separate blog based on technology, social media, etc. It may be much to tackle along with my own clients, but it's a lot of fun and I agree with your points… that since it is what "I do"… I would like to show more than tell by using by new blog to do that.

        • ideagirlmedia says:


          Thank you for stopping in to continue the conversation!

          A pleasure bumping into you on Twitter – I took a look at your bio and remember an energetic face from your profile.

          I have been to Italy, and enjoyed Florence. Wish I could have spent more time there. We ventured to Venice, explored Rome, and it was a whirlwind trip. I really liked Assissi and Verona even more. There, I plan to go again – potentially when I make it to the Isle of Capri, where my uncle talked so much about from his boyhood days.

          Interestingly enough, Tiana, it was not so long ago when I was in Italy, but it may also be that the word Twitter was not even uttered yet. I'll have to check. I do know that I was not checking my Facebook or Foursquare at that time!! :D

          Thanks for making me smile today,


          • Keri, research the beginnings of Instagram… it was spawned here in Florence! It's a very cool story. There are quite a lot of tech companies here, as I handle global start-ups that found their beginnings in this magical romantic city.

            Ah, Verona… so nice. When you go to Capri, make sure you visit the whole island… Anacapri is spectacular. Only have seafood… it's the one thing I don't order that much in Florence, since the it's known for its meat. Happy commenting with you. I am looking forward to more great articles and comments in the future!

  2. Nice wake up call, Keri.
    As a self employed consultant, everything I do reflects my "brand". So in the questionnaire above, saying over 16 hours is a no brainer.
    All the content I publish, the "likes" and "+1's" I give, the tweets, posts and links are a reflection on my values and opinions.

    Regarding profiles. I don't think it's possible to be a master of all platforms but if you work with social technology, you should at least familiarize yourself enough with each to be able to offer an opinion to your clients.
    Thanks fro the coffee read :-)

  3. ideagirlmedia says:


    Hello my coffee friend – I too answered "1+" above! :D

    You state it well – Everything we do online is a reflection of our brand. Values and options too.

    You are also correct in that we cannot be an expert of all platforms — There are thousands. But as professionals in a field, we are obligated to stay familiarized, just as you say. Much comes from learning by doing, because we're attached to a human function – socializing.

    Your clients are surely happy!

    Thanks for reading, and for your great comment,


  4. Keri

    You had me at Hello!

    You are so right, in fact I think your post is a big part of what Steamfeed is about. We need to lead by example. If you are just selling a service or consulting on a subject matter yet not subscribing to your own advice I question ones motives.

    I wonder how many of us got into social media first out of interest and curiosity and then realized how to use it in the professional world. Kicking the tires on a professional should include reviewing their profiles, FIRST. Great post Keri. Thanks

    • ideagirlmedia says:


      You complete me smile this morning… !! :)

      Leading by example is important in *any* profession. Though, as we are working toward social proof, and affecting the hopeful masses, I find this completely important. Sounds like we're on the same page.

      I'll fess up, it was not my original calculated plan to work in social media. But it fits and gels nicely with anything else I've ever done. So lets roll!

      I'll kick the tires if you will.

      Thanks for your comment, David,


  5. Keri, I completely agree, when I see a competitor has a poor social media presence I often think that sends a poor message. If you can't do it for yourself, how are you going to do it for my business. That being said I think it is important to be over inflated, in that, you have 400,000 followers but you never answer tweets or email…know that I mean? Excellent article Keri, from one of the best authors at Steamfeed.

  6. ideagirlmedia says:


    Thanks for your vote of confidence. The words, "If you can't do it for yourself, how are you going to do it for my business?" Words every decision-maker should ask!

    It is also important to look at: Yeah, you have a profile that you frequently visit, but are you using your tools? I've seen profiles for so-called "gurus" not featuring the very simplest forms of strategic presence. Not cool!

    400,000 followers and you're not a household name? Lets see how many fake and uninterested followers you have.

    Though, I'll fess up: Sometimes I don't get to answering some of the RTs. (But it kills me inside)

    You're stellar!

    Thanks for your comment,


  7. SteveHughes says:

    Keri – A solid piece and a clever juxtaposition of Football and Social Media professionals. I "don't need to" is so bothersome on so many levels. Eventually, if it hasn't already, this attitude will come with a price. This whole sphere is still in its infancy, and these bad apples are not only hurting themselves, but hurting the entire space.

  8. Keri – I have to agree. I've always felt it is really important to maintain social proof as a social media professional.

    I recall recently saying (in your presence) "I haven't had time to do that because I've been working on everyone else's stuff," and realizing the goofiness of that statement. It was true, at the moment, and the thing I needed to do was on my list to do for my own profiles.

    But I have to say, too, that I wasn't lagging in the game by much, and my profiles are active and always focused on building my brand.

    Bottom line for me: clients will come and go; my brand needs to continue to grow through it all.

    NOW, to do a better job with my own blog…. :)

    Great points, Keri! Awesome as always! :)

    • ideagirlmedia says:


      You have tapped on a very key statement: "Clients will come and go; my brand needs to continue to grow through it all." And it does! Or we don't get to the next step.

      In many other businesses, it is accepted that you can do for others and not necessarily do for yourself. The difference is that those professions don't necessarily warrant a population saying, "Show me the money," (give me social proof – now).

      This is a very transparent profession – One that is 24/7/365, and that means we have to be ready to present at any given moment. If we don't, someone else will.

      Is that why so many of us drink coffee?? :D

      Raylene, you do yourself and your clients proud. So happy to know you.

      Thanks for sharing your thoughts!


  9. ideagirlmedia says:


    Thank you for your kind words. Glad we're on the same page.

    You stated it very well: "This whole sphere is still in its infancy, and these bad apples are not only hurting themselves, but hurting the entire space."

    We're in this together!

    So happy to be part of SteamFeed with you!!

    Thanks for your comment,


  10. Great post Keri! "Suck it up and just do it" – I love it. I think it's very important to start and to be persistent. If we can't do something on our own (no time, etc.) – then find someone who can help. There is no excuse for NOT doing. Create a plan, think what's good for you and your business, and start doing it.

    I like your question: "How much time do you spend on your personal social media brand each week?" I think the right answer is: every time you are on social media platform – you build/maintain your personal (social media) brand :)

  11. ideagirlmedia says:


    You're liking my "tough-love" phrasing, eh? :)

    You're absolutely correct – There is no excuse for NOT doing it. And if you want to present yourself as an expert – someone in the know – you should display that you know the tools to do it.

    It is easy to let time run away on social media, that's for sure. A plan of posts & times for interaction, I find works well.

    Thanks for sharing your thoughts, Klaudia,


  12. Holy – thanks for the ammunition :-)
    I'm working on my own draft of "Why you shouldn't get your social media advice from a discount store"…
    The funny thing is that I see the tendency to be lazy with their own social media from people that offer "cheap" social media short-cut-spam-advertising services as well as from those that would actually be able to hire staff to set a good example….
    Thanks for this – NOW I will join that G+ Hangout tomorrow … you convinced me :-)

  13. ideagirlmedia says:


    Terrific title of the for the post you're working on — Please keep me posted, I'd love to read it!

    It is becoming more and more frequent. Our society is conditioned to want to go quicker, faster – be more efficient. But social media is about building relationships. Can we really be "more efficient" when it comes to relationships?

    In my local area, I see a lot of short-cuts being taken, and the trouble is that those that would hire someone to do this for them have not seen a standard that is different. They don't know to expect more. So it's a matter of education and spreading the message to the masses.

    Lets together lead by example. Thank you for dropping by the Google+ hangout — A pleasure to "meet" you there!!

    Thanks for reading, and for sharing your thoughts,


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