While I hope to soon find a new gig, I'm enjoying my new morning routine. Instead of pounding my coffee in the car while plotting out my to-do list for the day at the office, I find a cozy spot on the living room sofa, sip my coffee slowly and catch up on the news, sift through job search driven leads and delete all the 'to Sam Spam' emails that have crept past the filter in my inbox.When that petty pace is done, the 'social media' me takes over. I use three major social media applications daily, without exception - LinkedIn, Twitter and Facebook. This particular morning, while catching up on Tweets, I came upon the post from Mashable Tech that read '7 Apps You Don't Want to Miss'. The title grabbed my attention so follow the link I go, and I find that 6 out of the 7 apps were ones I would not miss- they were copycats or slight tweaks to existing apps or they were apps I would have no real use for. I decided to pay a visit to the App Store on my iPad to download 'Highlight' - an app that resembles the love child of Facebook and Foursquare. It's appeal to me, as silly as it sounds, was the ability for users to give virtual 'High Fives' as opposed to 'Likes'. That's it. (photo courtesy of dubclicks.com)
I downloaded Highlight, created a profile and then logged off. I didn't interact with anyone (only about half a dozen people I know are using it) and it didn't present an opportunity to do anything more than post something and share it across my other social networks. For a brief moment, I questioned whether or not I was using social media too much, or, based on the endless stream of places to 'share', 'post', 'like' people, places and things, not enough.(photo courtesy of Forbes.com)
When I started blogging I starting using 'Klout' - a software/application that essentially grades you on how much influence you are putting out into the social media realm (your connected accounts) by keeping track of frequency of use and shoots you a random score. This morning, I had a message from Klout that said my score had dropped from '53 to 51'. Many applications like Klout exist and they are valuable in terms of measuring the effectiveness of your inbound marketing efforts for companies, organizations... people who are trying to sell you a product or service. It is a cost effective way to learn about and engage your target audience. In terms of outreach, a high grade of influence and a way to measure it is really not for people like me. I pondered my 'score' and then deleted the app.
Sure, I like seeing that people have 'liked' a post on Facebook, when someone 're-Tweets' something I've managed to get out in less than 140 characters or even if people read this blog, but I am not relying on this to measure anything. Unless you are using social media for business - B2B or B2C, you are like me - you are part of the 'Social Media Mediocrity', or if you need it shortened, U2W (you to the world).What the 'Social Media Mediocrity' Means to Me
- You use social media applications like Facebook and Twitter daily- You mainly use social media for it's original purpose - staying connected to people
- If you are a professional, you use LinkedIn at least 3 times a week (new connections, posting articles relevant to your profession, seeing what others are saying and doing - what's trending
- If you are selling anything, it's yourself
- You are not using any sort of analysis or metrics to measure your influence (i.e. Klout)
- There is not someone waiting to hear a report from you on the # of followers you have, unique mentions or re-Tweets, etc
There are a ton of social networks out there. Every piece of content someone creates can be shared across a vast and constantly expanding stream of social media networks. Some may even say that the social media market is saturated. A site called Social Media Chimps actually integrated social media sites into Maslow's Hierarchy of Needs map. I think it's ridiculous. In today's digital age, we are all staying connected past the typical M-F, 9-5 world. Some say that is a good thing, others say it can be a bad thing. Social Media Today breaks it down in this post entitled 'Social Media - A Good Thing or A Bad Thing?'
(photo courtesy of hubpages)
In the end, it's up to you to decide on how much you use social media and for what purpose. I've read Facebook posts from people that have brought me to tears because of the raw emotion they willingly put out into the world and then one page scroll down, posts about cats playing the piano.
Businesses trying to generate leads, make connections that turn into fruitful relationships for their business - they should worry about their influence in terms of the effectiveness of their marketing strategy and how it all effects their bottom line. I see them as the 'Social Media 'Hierarchy'.Oppositely, I know people from a much older demographic who have a Facebook account but are very confused as to what a 'wall' is and instead of sending a private message directly to someone, you'll see something like 'No, no... I said we'd meet at Clam King for supper at 4pm' as a post on their wall.
As for me, right now I am content to exist in the social media mediocrity. I use it for what I want, when I want and don't put too much stock into how many 'likes' a post gets or who follows me on Twitter. But, for the sake of conformity, feel free to share this post across your vast social media network. I hope you 'like' it. Oh, and download Highlight so I can have more people to 'High Five', okay? © themarketingmindandmatters.blogspot.com