Please Don’t Call GolinHarris’ New Social Director a ‘Ninja’

shutterstock_114112063For a sign of the digital times, look no further than Neil Kleiner, the new head of social media for GolinHarris. He’s something of an archetype: started as a music journalist (just like us!) who got into digital because it was the only way he could publish. And he wants to bring social back to earth.

His “Newsmaker” interview with PR Week UK is this morning’s must read. Some key quotes:

“The first wave of social gurus in 2011 royally f*cked it up for everyone. They over-promised, under-delivered and sold bullshit to clients that didn’t work – you’re still seeing some clients massively distrustful of social now because of that.”

Blunt! We like!

While he emphasizes the value of content creation, he also rightly hesitates to say (without qualification) that PR “owns” social.

“Media agencies will carry on doing the buying, but we need to own strategy and content.”

Kleiner’s point is really a variation on the better-late-than-never consensus that social is not a magic cure-all, that likes and shares are NOT necessarily signs of success and that the people and the message are far more important than the platform.

In other words, he’s our kind of guy.

And while we prefer bourbon, something tells us that #LinkedGin would make for a good night out.

@PatrickCoffee Patrick Coffee is a senior editor for Adweek.