Social media isn’t a void to scream into

I have a lot of social media accounts.


Not including the ones I manage for clients I have a Twitter and a Facebook (obvs), a Pinterest, a YouTube, a Google +, a Quora,  a LinkedIn (seriously, stop emailing me) and a MeetUp. I’m also part of professional groups which set up their own networks purely to email saps like me who have a physical urge to check their inbox every ten to fifteen seconds.

I don’t keep on top of all them because, frankly, who’s got the time? Especially when I’m actually paid by firms to look after their social platforms rather than just my own.

There tends to be a group of hardcore users I meet in each of the networks. They’re usually self-employed. Mainly in the creative sector and, quite honestly, guilty of breaking the first rule of social media. They are using it to have a one way conversation with themselves.

Let me give you an example. Someone I kind of know launched a new website this month. Good on them. I know a lot of web designers who do wonderful work and my own @JonesMark has designed a lovely website for me to sell my wares.

Do you want to know how I know a new website was launched? Because throughout the week it pinged as a notification on each of my social networks. Every single one.

At no stage was there an attempt to enter into any kind of conversation. Purely it was an exercise in self-promotion with no attempt to engage with people in any way.

Now, you might be thinking “and what, pray, is wrong with a little self-promotion?” Well, nothing. There’s nothing wrong with using the skills the universe has given you, using them to set up your own little corner of the world and then telling people about it.

But consider for a moment how you look. You’re the dude at the party who sidles up to groups of people and turns the conversation round to himself to talk about how great he is. You listen not to the voices of others. Even if they do the same work, you’re not interested. Why? Because in your head you’re the thing that’s most important. You ignore the slightly bored faces of the people you’re talking at and only when they wander off to find another group to talk to do you consider what you’re doing. And only then, to be honest, you just sidle up to another group and do the same thing over and over again.

You’re a bore. And who wants to engage with a bore. You’re making your brand and business sound dull and boring. At least use social media to try and convey some sort of personality and interest in other human beings, even if it’s fake.

Try a few @s. How about a little Like here in there. Share someone else’s page, just for fun.

And yes, the person who’s launched the website is EXACTLY that in real life.


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