It is a human’s nature to share thoughts, experiences and ideas with others within their society. Social media has accelerated this inherent need of self-expression in countless ways. The internet has made it possible for any literate person with internet access to become a publisher.

The Social Media Bible discusses how humans throughout the ages have published their ideas, from cave paintings to the printing press to self-publishing on the internet.

I am ashamed to refer to Justin Bieber as a successful self-publisher, but you’ve got to give the kid some credit. Bieber used YouTube to become a global superstar almost overnight. Without a free platform like YouTube to publish and broadcast his R&B covers, Bieber may never have been discovered. How could the world survive without Bieber fever? (please sense the sarcasm)

From what I have read, Bieber continues to use YouTube and Twitter to communicate with his fans personally. According to Wikipedia ‘the Biebs’ acquires an average of 24,000 followers a day on Twitter. The kid may have some talent as a musician but he is clearly a master of social media marketing.

Organizations can take a lesson from Bieber when it comes to making fans feel involved and connected to the brand, which is the key to much of Bieber’s success.

Charlie Sheen is an example of an alternative style of social media market. He brought new meaning to the expression, ‘there is no such thing as bad press.’ Sheen used Twitter and television interviews to make himself a public spectacle. Some could debate that he was manipulating the press, while others believe the drugs have finally caught up to him. Regardless which side you’re on, it is clear that Sheen sure knows how to get the public’s attention.

I think it is important for organizations to understand what kind of online image and attention they want before participating in the social media market. Social media communications are an effective new tool to help brand a company, individual or even a city.

In the wake of the Anthony Weiner scandal I must point out that social media can either strengthen an individual’s image or destroy their career. The following Mashable article highlights some of the biggest social media mistakes, 10 People Who Lost Jobs Over Social Media Mistakes: http://mashable.com/2011/06/16/weinergate-social-media-job-loss/

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