This post is a series of blogs contributed by SMW NYC media partner Differences Magazine. To learn more about Differences Magazine and to see the original post by Vivian Nunez, please click here.
The New Ghostwriter Panel included Aliza Licht, Terry Li, Sam Graham- Felsen, and was moderated by Todd Wasserman; to say it was incredible is an understatement. Each panelist is an expert in his or her field of interest and throughout the conversation it showed.
Mr. Graham-Felsen demonstrated extensive knowledge in the meshing of politics and social media, which ultimately transcended that niche and flowed into personal branding and the importance of authenticity. Having been a blogger for the Obama 2008 campaign, Sam understands how essential it is to have a voice that is all your own and to be able to have a candid conversation with those that interact with your material, a trait that the Obama campaign perfected. The ability to give a personal voice to the blog is what set Sam and the Obama campaign apart from any other organization that used ghostwriters, which is simply the middleman or filter between what the brand or politician wants to say and what you as a follower actually read or hear.
All the panelists opposed directly to the use of ghostwriters because it takes away the transparency of any brand and in specific Sam admitted to being a strong proponent of “cutting the divide between a company or politician and an audience”. Terry Li partially disagreed with the statement because he finds the ghostwriter to be useful if used wisely, like when someone has a speech written by someone else. Yet ghostwriting provides a specific dilemma because it takes away from the “social” side of social networking, it makes any young adult vulnerable to falling for the pretense that they are communicating with their favorite celebrity when they really are talking to his middleman.
Aliza Licht or @dkny as many might know her, has perfected the ability to remain authenticate, engage in conversation, and still represent the brand quite well, without having to resort to ghostwriting. An easy feat she admitted simply because while tweeting she is being herself. The key lies in the authenticity and the ability to create a flow of information; each young adult is aware of that natural flow because they take part of it every single time they use a social network. You engage with others on social networks assuming that it is personally them and although advertising might be involved subtly, like Terry Li and Bre.ad manage to do, you still feel like you are a part of a genuine conversation.
As a part of the younger demographic this is how you want to develop all your personal branding ventures after because between Aliza’s personal touch, Sam’s lens in storytelling and engagement, and Terry’s ability to create an unrecognizable divide between interaction and promotion, you are able to find a perfect equilibrium to propel your own personal brand.. During the Q&A plenty of the answers provided were geared toward young adults and advice was given. For instance if what you want is to be a strong influence in social media a key is to provide material not seen before or to truly engage in conversation, not just disseminate information. The topic of the panel might have been ghostwriting but the advice shared here goes beyond who sends out twitter messages, it is about a personal brand, and by personal I mean YOU!