What type of Social Media Service are you? Boss/Right Hand Man/Muscle/Mercenary

In Australia there are currently four types of agents who are implementing Social Media Initiatives for Companies. As I am addicted to The Wire, I will use analogies from the series to describe the different types of offers.

The Main Man – Avon Barksedale

These people work full time for the brand they are doing social media work for. They champion social media from internally. They can act as a great form of customer service and are a touch point to the rest of the organisation.

Examples of this are
Mike Hickinbotham for Telstra
Karla Courtney for QANTAS Insider
Scott Drummond for Sports Hydrant
Chris Noble and for World Nomads

The Right Hand Man – Stringer Bell
These are people who consult and educate people within an organsation on how they should best use the power of social media/community. They usually consult a number of brand/businesses at the one time.

Laurel Papworth
Gerry McCusker
Stephen Collins
Lee Hopkins

The Muscle - Snoop

These are people who are brought in from outside of the organization to help run a companies social media strategy on behalf of the brand. They usually work on a retainer model and are hired to do the tactical day to day running of a community. They will also work across a number of brands usually.

Mudo Media
Switched on Media

The Mercenary - Brother Mouzone

These people are brought on for campaigns that a brand will be running. Social Media is seen to be integrated within a larger campaign that will be running. They work on a short term basis and are usually re-engaged only when a new campaign is launching for that brand.

The Population

There is usually a little bit of overlap between these roles so someone may act as the consultant but may also be the muscle on the project.

On a side note; who is your favourite character on The Wire?
For me it is a toss up between Bodie or Robin Hood Omar Little


Nick said...

Stringer Bell. Nice post Julian.

Lippy said...

Marlo was on the front of SMH... Foreal


Roger Lintzeris said...

Stringer Bell without a doubt.

Good overview of how things are looking in the social media services landscape at the moment.

Eunmac said...

Hey Julian,

Amnesia Razorfish seldom creates one off social media campaigns - we don't beleive that's a healthy approach to social, which we believe is about commitment / a 365 days/yr. Most of our clients work with us under a retainer to look at ongoing social media strategies - not one offs.

Thanks - eunmac

Julian Cole said...

Hey Eunmac,

I am only going off what I see which is work for (Daredallion - http://www.daredallion.com.au/, Aussie Home Loans - http://www.youtube.com/duanejumps and Smirnoff Mule - http://www.facebook.com/pages/Smirnoff-Mule/68835181573?ref=s).

Which all looked like they were burst of activity. I do not think that there is anything wrong with this type of work either.

Lippy, that is crazy about the SMH article on the same day.

Nick and Roger, I had love for Stringer Bell but then found that he was a little too sneaky for his own good. He was playing too many games. He was loosing at the legitimate business game and then wasn't playing the game in the streets which was his bread and butter.

Tim Burrowes - Mumbrella said...

In The Wire, these people are marginalised by society, viewed with suspicion by the mainstream and characterised by complex, vicious infighting.

Whereas... (and I think you can probably come up with your own punchline from there.)


Tim - Mumbrella

Ben Shepherd said...

how did that aussie home loans guy jumping from a plane thing go anyway? anyone got any data - actual or anecdotal?

Unknown said...

There's also a whole lot of hoppers out there about to cap Omar.

You'll be missing a lot if you just focus on the big names.

Anonymous said...


Mike Hill said...

Mind if I post this on our front door? - "We are the muscle"

PS I'm moving to Season 3 tonight. can't wait!

Laurel Papworth said...

Publicly I promote my workshops and seminars but I do handpick my longer term clients. I tend to keep my involvement private, even when they go off and win awards. My main client at the moment will not complete contract til after 2012.

I occasionally do event-wrangling - as it has a nice Time spike, so that is shorter term social media campaigns.

I spent 3 years as community manager, Admin and social media news editor for one forum and 2 years on the Stratics Everquest/Ultima Online communities, absolutely immersed in those brands. Probably why I left and started teaching instead. Heh.

I guess in the last 20 years I have covered off each one of the 4 sectors... wonder what's next? :P

Laurel Papworth said...

...but my real question is: What is the Wire when it's at home? Is it like NCIS?

By the way Jules, can you turn on "subscribe to comments"? It's in the dashboard somewhere. Some of us are too lazy to keep coming back for updates... :P

Robin Grant said...

A nice analogy Julian. So which character is We Are Social - The Greek maybe?

Stanley Johnson said...

Interesting analogies Jules. Nice one.

My fave is Stringer Bell. Possibly the coolest TV character ever. The climax of series 3 where he and Avon sold each other out was brilliant.

Big fan of Omar too.

Content and Motion - Social Media Agency said...

I see myself as more of an Omar type character. No, wait... that might have quite a few negative connotations :) He's definitely my favourite character from across the entire series, though Snoop is outright terrifying.

Work-wise, I'd like to think we're a combination of most of the above, basically, barring the "Boss".

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