There are so many examples to point to that prove social media isn't a new ecosystem. The forces that drive success in social media can be adopted from many (most?) other personal and professional experiences. You already know that your grandmother can teach you at least 10 things about social media. And if you like to cook, chances are you already know what it takes to succeed in social media. And if you don't, then this post will serve up a lesson in both social media and cooking.
You have to know what you are cooking before you start mixing ingredients. A chef knows what he is trying to create when he starts cooking. It's always easier to create 'something' when you know what that 'something' is. And yet many businesses just start throwing social media ingredients together hoping it will turn into a creme brulee. It won't...
The quality of the ingredients is the most important factor in any dish. If you use fresh, quality ingredients in your dishes, your food will always taste better. And if you use fresh, quality ingredients (content, input, conversations) in your social media, everyone will want a taste.
Each tool in your kitchen serves a different purpose. You wouldn't use a frying pan to cook a turkey because it's not the right tool to get the job done. You have to know what the 'job' is before you choose the tool to accomplish it. Don't fire up a Twitter account or Facebook page until you are sure it's the right tool to get the 'job' done.
Don't try to do too many things at once. There is only so much even the most experienced chef can accomplish at once. If you try to boil pasta, grill chicken, steam vegetables, bake a cake, and blend a gazpacho at the same time, one (or all) of your dishes is going to turn out overcooked, burned, or mushy. Take your time to do every dish or social media community right, and don't take on more than you can handle at once.
Presentation is always important. It's in our nature to use all our senses to determine the quality of an experience. A dish will always taste better when it is presented well, and a social media offering will always seem more interesting/legitimate/enticing when its design looks professional.
Now, cooking and social media are not easy. They all take a certain level of skill and experience to do well. But both start with basic fundamentals and thinking that you now know, and can begin (or continue) to apply. Enjoy...