Shakespeare’s Social Media Lessons [Quotes]

7 Midsummer Night Dream Insights for Social Media

Midsummer's Night Dream Meets Social MediaJust as William Shakespeare’s  A Midsummer Night Dream blurs the line between dreams and reality, social media blurs the line between digital engagement and real life relationships.

For many participants, social media engagement can feel more authentic than our actual lives. In honor of the summer solstice, let’s examine Shakespeare’s valuable social media lessons.

Here are seven quotes from Midsummer Night’s Dream that show us how to interact on social media.

  1. “The course of true love never did run smooth” Many marketers understand what this means for social media since there’s a lot of noise on social media platforms, some positive, some negative and some neutral. The critical factor for marketers is to monitor the social media conversation to know which interactions require a corporate response. Remember what people say may be influenced by their environment. The rule of thumb is that only 2% of comments need a response. The challenge is knowing which ones are part of the 2%.
  2. “Swift as a shadow, short as any dream; Brief as the lightning in the collied night.”  This quote references true love’s ability to be dashed quickly. Similarly, you can be the darling of a social media network only to loose your popularity in the blink of an eye. On social media sites, consumers are known for leaving after they get their promotional offer. To this end, it’s useful to engage with your fans on social media and to extend your customer relationships to build a more solid basis for expanding your shared bond.
  3. “So quick bright things come to confusion.” Just as happiness can dissolve into darkness, your customers and fans love and support you until you do something they don’t like. Therefore, it’s critical to be engaged and build a social media following before you’re faced with a PR crisis.
  4. “Masters, spread yourselves.” Despite the fact that this quote literally means not to crowd Peter Quince, on social media networks, it translates to diversifying the platforms upon which you participate. To this end, it’s a good idea, especially if you’ve got a brand, to ensure that you own your brand name on new and emerging social media sites. Don’t misconstrue this to mean you only need a shell. You should selectively choose those platforms where your target audience congregates. Think in terms of your social media persona.
  5. “Lord, what fools these mortals be!”  Puck can laugh at the lovers’ confusion over mistaken identities. On social media, this quote illustrates how easy it is to forget that behind every social media avatar is a real person with real feelings. On social media platforms, it’s important to be respectful of others because you never know what they’re going through. Further, they may not speak your language or understand your references. Understand that social media implies you have a social responsibility!
  6. “I’ll put a girdle round about the earth In forty minutes.”  While this quote refers to Puck’s speedy trip, on social media, this would refer to the rapid rate of message transmission and exchange. Understand that once a message or piece of information on social media goes public, you no longer control it. Therefore stop to think before you communicate, especially when you’re upset because these feelings can be conveyed without you realizing it.
  7. “my heart / Is true as steel” This Shakespearian reference to the strength of true love translates to support on social media platforms. This is particularly important where influencers are involved. To this end, influence indicator sites like PeerIndex and Klout can be helpful. For an organization, the best influence is built through your business activities and the relationships you’ve forged with your prospects, customers, fans and the public through engagement.

On social media platforms, it’s important to build relationships with your prospects, customers, fans and social media colleagues. Where possible, it’s useful to extend these relationships offline to the real world since it provides a better basis for interactions.

Which other Shakespearian quotes do you think hold social media lessons?

Happy marketing,
Heidi Cohen

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