When There’s Nothing To Say

Since I discovered Tamar Weinberg , the self-proclaimed social media rock star, I use her as my bellwether for the unbearable lightness of marketing.  Following her post, 7 Truths About Social Media Marketing , a cat fight broke out in the comments when a commenter, going by the name “Fed Up,” wrote:

How many times can you write the same thing over and over again?

This led to flames.  Tamar adores being adored.  Tamar was not pleased at being told she was naked (excuse the image).  After a variety of nastiness, not the least of which was Tamar calling “Fed Up” a coward  for not using a real name (and one of the more brilliant commenters noting that this name was “obviously bogus.” I wonder what gave it away?).

The problem is Tamar’s post, which, per the majority of her commenters, ran the gamut from wonderful to genius, said nothing that any reasonably sentient being wouldn’t innately know.  It leads me to believe that social media marketing is either the last bastion of the pathologically stupid, or, more likely, simply a vapid endeavor where those lacking the skills to get a productive job congregate to lock arms and compliment each other for not drooling. 

Tamar ends the cat fight with this diatribe:

You want to give me constructive criticism? Give it to me. What you did was come out here with guns blazing and attacking my tactics.

“You insult the reader and say you’re not there to help them, and if they want real value they should hire you, closing with “bye”.”

Want some value? The original comment about building relationships was obviously missed by you, since you did no such thing. So guess what? These messages are being sent but not heeded to. That’s why I repeat it, because people like you don’t get the message.

If you’re a regular reader like you say you are, surely you should have gotten the memo by now.

“Second, I don’t know – I thought blogging was all about providing value to your readers”

I’m all about giving value to my readers, and like I said before, there are at least 20 commenters (and 321 people who have since retweeted this post) who thought so.

Don’t forget, time is money, and I am already giving you hours of my time for free. I don’t owe you a single thing more than what I’m already investing considerable time for — all for nothing.

There are many people who I appreciate; they’re incredibly thankful — that’s why I continue blogging (in generalities — oh, because I can). Then there’s you. You obviously need to demand more. Why do you think you’re entitled? Get over the sense of entitlement. Being rude and inconsiderate, which is exactly what you did from your first comment here, was wrong.

“Maybe it’s that easy for you, but some of us actually have to examine, apply, test and tweak any and every lesson learned and every advice received.”

Yup, and since going into specifics doesn’t belong in a blog post since it will ostracize 95% of my readers, I focus on generalities. Sorry to disappoint you, but again, I owe you absolutely nothing. Expecting otherwise speaks miles for your character, which is already undermined by the fact that you aren’t even [wo]man enough to use your real name. It’s actually my blog policy, which is why I ask for it. You have ignored the policy entirely.

If you want me to give you something of substance, ask for it. But just insulting my approach — which is EXACTLY what you did from your first comment — will absolutely get you to where you are with me right now, being defensive because this is MY blog and NOT yours.

Brevity is not Tamar’s strength.  She’s not much on clarity either.  And she’s a bit weak on logic.  But when it comes to being disingenuous, nobody beats Tamar.  And she’s got sycophants to prove it.

So the product of her outrage is that “Fed Up’s” complaint was right on the money, that Tamar repeats the same insipid, meaningless vagaries to the applause of some of the unemployables and concedes in her denial that she’s got nothing to offer.  There’s no substance to be had, and yet her fans adore her.  Does it occur to Tamar that she’s being applauded for saying nothing?  Does she consider what this says about social media marketing?  Having considered Tamar’s advice (most notably building relationships with those who bolster her fragile ego), I doubt she grasps the ironies.

Over the past week (actually for much longer, but it’s really hit home over the past week), I’ve watched lawyers trying to be like Tamar.  Some surrounding themselves with friendlies to build relationships upon which they can enjoy mutual self-promotion.  Others lighting a fire for noting the substantive errors in their self-promotional efforts.  Whether the flare-up was love or anger, it was embarrassing and disappointing.  

The shallowness of social media marketing is not Tamar’s fault.  Nor can we blame her for being angry about being called out.  If she could wield a hammer, she would build a house.  She can’t, so she spits out tired vagaries that appeal to others who can’t wield a hammer, and they all sing Kumbaya to feel better about themselves.  She can no more allow someone to reveal the obvious than fold up her tent and get a real job.  But then she wouldn’t be a social media rock star, which would make her cry.

We, on the other hand, are lawyers.  We have the ability to distinguish between substance and nonsense.  We also have the ability to distinguish between our brethren who provide substance and those who have taken to the internet to market their wares.  Those lawyers who buy into the need for social media marketing are fooling no one.  You’re just Tamar with a ticket.

Here’s my 1 truth of social media marketing.  If you want to build something worthwhile, it must start with respect for your own competency as a lawyer.  Any fool can toot his own horn.  Show that you know how to wield a hammer.  Or go hang out with Tamar and pretend that you have something to say.