5 Social Media (Buzz)Words That Have Lost Their Way

I tackled a topic that was driving me crazy…Buzzwords that are being used in business that have lost their meaning.

I’m really not one to jump on a blog theme or usually even cover similar topics in back to back fashion but I realized after writing the first post that this whole buzzword thing is an epidemic of sorts and it is infecting more than just business leaders.


Enter Social Media…


Social Media – the wild wild west of media platforms and by the way it is also the future for how we will all communicate. I’m waving at you email…you are going bye bye (premonition free of charge – leave your disagreements below)

Social Media is also a place where people who have never historically had an audience can find an audience. This can be achieved in many ways, but primarily through a guerilla approach where a tremendous amount of time is spent on the Social Platforms. The size of the audience can be expanded by employing strategies such as curating great content, creating better content, and of course by sucking up to important people.

If those don’t reflect your strategy you can implement a strategy of writing blogs about the hottest new shiny object. Not too long ago it was Klout, before that it was Triberr, and most recently it has been Pinterest.

If finally that strategy doesn’t get you where you want to go you can play Social Media Buzzword bingo. Throwing out these words in the Social Stream are sure to get you “Liked,” and loved. However, I’m calling it out now…

Some of these buzzwords have lost their meaning and perhaps their soul.

Before getting to the meat (the list) I want to be clear that I believe many of these words started with good intention and with proper application they can still have meaning in limited context. But much like the business buzzwords, it is man made sputrid (word I made up!) of these terms that has caused them to lose their way.

In no particular order, here are 5 Social Media buzz words that were well intended but have lost their way…

1. Engagement

The idea of making a strong connection between people or between a person and a brand. More than just simply communicating, we are seeking to engage our audiences. Given that most of us have an attention span of about 4 nanoseconds on the social platforms, I would say most of us aren’t as engaged as we like to claim.

2. Authenticity

I could write about this for days. In fact I have (Click here to read more). I have met many people whom I’ve first connected with via various Social Platforms. I would say at least half of the time (non-scientific) I find the people to be nothing like their “Social Personality.” There is a big difference between acting authentic and being authentic; a lot of people clearly do not get this.

3. Reciprocity

We are all supposed to reciprocate. This was decided by the pundits of Social Media. Some folks do this very well, but most of the people who preach the behavior hardly follow it. If reciprocating means sharing of 5 of your best friends, and 5 people who you worship then I retract the aforementioned comments. However it doesn’t, so I don’t.

4. Influence

I blame and credit Klout for making this word relevant and then for destroying it. The idea of having influence has SO MANY variables that your Twitter Stream and Facebook likes can only tell a fraction of the story. Yet people want to put a score on you that defines how influential you are? PLEASE!

5. Community

I really want to thank everyone in this great community (sarcasm) who reads my blog. In serious, I genuinely do appreciate everyone, and I really wish it was more of a community. However the average reader doesn’t just read a few blogs and associate with a few brands. It is a plethora, and we are not all part of a community of every one of these things. Community as in family, business, neighborhood, church, etc…Those things are community. And yes, in some cases we can create online communities. I can name 3 -> Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn. After that I call it readers, subscribers, and if I’m lucky friends and acquaintances.
There are plenty of overused terms flying around on Twitter, Facebook, LinkedIn, and Pinterest. With each passing day more terms, words, and ideas will be made trivial via the pundits, followers, and lemmings that regurgitate them like raw poultry product.

For me, these five drive me crazy.

What about you, what are the Social Media terms that have lost their way for you? As an engaged member of the community I’d really love to know. *Snark*

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One Response to “5 Social Media (Buzz)Words That Have Lost Their Way”

  1. I love ya, you know I do.  I am not allowing others mis-use of perfectly good words cause me to not use them.
    Giving your questions some thought – pondering.

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