Social Media: The Number One Rule is There are No Rules

“One small step for man, one giant leap for mankind.”

Neil Armstrong, Apollo 11 Commander

It’s hard to imagine that it has been 40 years since Neil Armstrong made man’s first step upon the surface of the moon. What a pioneering time that was and we were able to watch the fuzzy images live from our living rooms on black and white television sets.

This is the time for that same kind of pioneering spirit that will allow us to fully explore the developing communications technologies and take them to heights we’ve never dreamed possible.

We are in the midst of a communication revolution driven by the power of information fueled by rapidly evolving communication technologies.

For those of you are new to social media, there’s going to be a lot of advice on how to use this space. There are those who will even publically scold you if you step outside their perception of the proper use of social media. But, as you jump into this space, there’s really only one rule to remember: There are no rules!

Social media has been an explosively popular communication channel that has surpassed anything the early adopters of it had ever envisioned. When I came into the space there were a lot of “suggested guidelines” for the use of social media but I’ve seen those guidelines continually drown with every wave of new participants, each with their own objectives for its use.

I’m thankful for the rebels who continue to push the envelope for how this new channel can be used. We’ve already seen it used in a variety of ways that early on, were never even thought of.  Everything from voicing political descent such as events in Iran, to communicating real time emergencies like the US Airways flight that crashed into the Hudson River, to selling products and services or reconnecting with long lost friends to communicating with family.

I was exposed to social media when I started my own new business consultancy to small-to mid-size ad agencies. I had a need to affordably build awareness for my business. Social media provided that platform.

I came into social media with a different perspective than most of those who were using this channel prior to my participation. Entirely from a new business perspective. I’ve continued to press its uses for generating in-bound leads for an agency’s new business pipeline. I’ve been able to hone the things that work and help agencies get up to speed quickly without all of the experimentation and efort that I initially went through.  

To stay relevant and be in position of leadership I must stay ahead of the curve and continue to press the boundaries of social media on behalf of my online community.

Social media has impacted every industry, particularly the advertising industry and it will continue to do so. Instead of resisting change, we need to embrace it. Instead of waiting for someone to lead us, we need to take the initiative and lead.

Instead of following social media rules, be the rebel and take it to the limit. Use your marketing mind, your brand experience and explore the possibilities with this new channel of communication.

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This post is sponsored by Natural Logic, specializing in web strategies & solutions.

About Michael Gass

Consultant | Trainer | Author | Speaker

Since 2007, he has been pioneering the use of social media, inbound and content marketing strategies specifically for agency new business.

He is the founder of Fuel Lines Business Development, LLC, a firm which provides business development training and consulting services to advertising, digital, media and PR agencies.


  1. While I understand the idea behind your post, let’s be careful about how one may interpret the headline. Many a epic blunder has been made through social media. There are very important rules with regards to response time and appropriate responses (BP, United), taste and tactfulness (reference quiznos) and many other areas.

    It was a good read, just may give the “scanners” the wrong idea.

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