Ryan Seacrest, I @ U

Ryan Seacrest, I @ U

Tamara Crawford


World records are being broken. Badminton players are behaving badly. And Olympic commentator Ryan Seacrest is gushing over the number of Facebook and Twitter likes/followers Michael Phelps has now that the games are on. Seacrest is SO excited about all the love. “Millions of likes! ” he squeals.

Maybe Seacrest didn’t get the memo. Phelps is a mega celebrity in a highly dramatized global event—of course people are following him to get closer to the action.  Besides, the look-at-all-my-followers story went out with Ashton Kutcher’s Twit-fest. It’s not news. But if an erstwhile entertainment host didn’t know any better, maybe it’s still worth talking about?

While the number of fans and followers has its value, quality (of fans) and engagement (you have with each) should be your focus, because social media is a relationship platform. And if you’re in a position where people around you are still obsessed with sheer quantity of likes, clicks, fans and followers, try to get them talking about validity instead.

Did you see this story about a Facebook “Like” experiment with a fictitious company called Virtual Bagels? It’s a good read about how dicey and inexplicable “likes” (and their value) are in the real world.

In addition, a recent chat with an industry coworker turned up some interesting facts about validity in online advertising. He’s developed an expertise in forensic clickstream analysis to determine if real people are clicking on your ads. The big statistic? He says “most advertisers have no idea that 25-40% of their online budget isn’t reaching human beings.”

The lesson from all this? Whether you’re the most decorated Olympian of all time or one the wealthiest pretty faces on TV, be sure the people who love you really love you.


World records are being broken. Badminton players are behaving badly. And Olympic commentator Ryan Seacrest is gushing over the number of Facebook and Twitter likes/followers Michael Phelps has now that the games are on. Seacrest is SO excited about all the love. “Millions of likes! ” he squeals.

Maybe Seacrest didn’t get the memo. Phelps is a mega celebrity in a highly dramatized global event—of course people are following him to get closer to the action.  Besides, the look-at-all-my-followers story went out with Ashton Kutcher’s Twit-fest. It’s not news. But if an erstwhile entertainment host didn’t know any better, maybe it’s still worth talking about?

While the number of fans and followers has its value, quality (of fans) and engagement (you have with each) should be your focus, because social media is a relationship platform. And if you’re in a position where people around you are still obsessed with sheer quantity of likes, clicks, fans and followers, try to get them talking about validity instead.

Did you see this story about a Facebook “Like” experiment with a fictitious company called Virtual Bagels? It’s a good read about how dicey and inexplicable “likes” (and their value) are in the real world.

In addition, a recent chat with an industry coworker turned up some interesting facts about validity in online advertising. He’s developed an expertise in forensic clickstream analysis to determine if real people are clicking on your ads. The big statistic? He says “most advertisers have no idea that 25-40% of their online budget isn’t reaching human beings.”

The lesson from all this? Whether you’re the most decorated Olympian of all time or one the wealthiest pretty faces on TV, be sure the people who love you really love you.

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