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  • Writer's picturetamera

Social Communications is NOT Digital Expertise

A lot of chatter these days in social media circles is about new hires, or old guards, having “digital expertise” when what they really mean is social communications chops. The two can be mutually exclusive, but are not necessarily, and are rarely fully integrated.

What qualifies as “digital expertise”?

Email Marketing

Search Engine Optimization and Marketing

User Experience Design

Content Optimization

Landing Page Optimization

Creative Placements (banner ads, takeovers, etc)/ media planning

Creative development

Offline creative integration

Analytics & how they inform business decisions

Tools / Widgets

Database building/ mining/ usage

Website builds and creative applications


Understanding the different kinds of Tech – e.g. XML vs HTML

Flash (strengths & weaknesses)

Contest development & rules and regulations

Mobile Marketing

… I’m pretty sure I missed stuff too…

What is social communications?

Relationship building

Content development


Social platforms/ networks knowledge


Communications planning

Plug-ins and WYSIWYG understanding

… probably missed a few points here too, but you get the idea…

While the two should ideally be part and parcel and fully integrated (and can be), currently having social communications expertise does not necessarily mean you have digital expertise. Lots of people have spent 10+ years building digital expertise while the social web is not only not even 5 yet, but in reality (business reality), is closer to two. Semantics matter – let’s not confuse the two, and let’s be clear about what the web is capable of delivering in its entirety. It is important.

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