Expert, Guru, Ninja– Really?

Social media is an ideal venue for shameless self-promotion. LinkedIn in the premier spot for the budding wantrepreneur of all things “new media” to tout the titles, “Expert,” “Guru,” or “Ninja.” The problem is: it’s a lie.


The terms Expert or Guru are only true if bestowed by others who are professionals in your field. If you refer to yourself as a Ninja or Guru, it is guaranteed to be not only gross but untrue. Somethings are best said behind your back. If you’re claiming expertise show us your awards,  accomplishments or successful project outcomes. Emphasize the results of your work. Show us a portfolio, illustrious testimonials or give an inspiring TED Talk.


The key to expertise: It’s DEMONSTRATED and VERIFIABLE.

Please, for the love of all things holy, never buy from or click the ad of these so called “Gurus.” Anyone who claims expertise in anything online, web or tech related is a bald faced liar. It is not humility to concede that web and social media technology is constantly in flux. It is honesty to master your craft by continued, rigorous, frequently unpaid learning. Trust me, the more you learn, the more you recognize there is to know.


In 2014 Google rolled out several changes to their algorithms, throwing organic and local search results into disarray. Every major social media platforms have rolled out major changes that are cosmetic and operational over the last several months. How you purchase advertising on Facebook, how posts from your businesses page work, just changed in a major way. Twitter’s trying everything to keep investors happy and turn a profit, this translates to experiments in advertising and monetization.


If you were a the Superman of SEO in March of 2014, these updates are your kryptonite. All the purported magic wizardry of SEO is now largely null and void. Writing great content, having quality images, video and effective marketing strategy is the key.


Web technology and “new media” is simply too massive and too transient to ever truly be a “Guru,” “Expert,” or “Ninja.”


Those of us working in the field, know the secret. We all make this up as we go along. Some technologies catch on, while other’s adopted and later abandoned. Myspace anyone?


Web technology is a massive, real-time experiment. It is an complex ecosystem of human want and need fulfillment, distraction, learning and commerce.


If you need me, I’ll be watching a webinar.