Social Media or Anti-Social Media?
Social Media platforms like Twitter, Foursquare, or Facebook are only records of some of our social-ness. But they are not social. The essential key to social media is the social part. It turns out, you’ve been doing social since you’ve been alive… and certainly being social has been a key component of your business since its foundation. You meet people, socialize with them, they trust you, and they buy your stuff. Social: mixing it up with people… you are hard-wired to do it!
More Social, Less Media
Remember this as a universal truth about social media: every moment spent online is an unconnected moment. It’s by definition non-social (and, at times, anti-social), unconnected behavior. Sure, okay… you’re texting with people, that’s social, right? Nope, that’s communicating. I can write “meet me for lunch at 11:30” and leave it on someone’s desk, right? Is that social? Nope. You can be communicating with someone and still be non-social or anti-social. And more importantly, you can be not communicating at all, yet still be socializing.
For ANY social media as a strategy to work, you have to commit to being social and you can’t do that when looking at a computer screen.
To be clear, here are list of some social activities:
- Attending a Seminar
- Going to a Bar
- Playing Golf
- Business Dealings
- Contract Negotiations
- Prospect Lunches
These are considered social for one very good reason – none are done alone (if you play golf alone, stop it). All require connecting to other people around us to be effective, entertained, productive, whatever.
In contrast, here are a list of non-social activities:
- Updating your LinkedIn Profile
- Updating – anything
- Posting something, anything on Facebook
- Wishing for sales
- Putting off your seminar series
- Writing in your planner
- Making Lists
- Surfing the Web
See the difference? All of these are solitary activities that—to be effective—require working alone. Now, is posting on Facebook a bad idea? Not at all, it’s just important to note that posting is the ‘media part’ of Social Media, not the ‘social part’.
Consider list-making: some may find it an essential part of their day—but it’s not social. That’s why ‘Social Media’ has caught many people off-balance… we are bombarded with the message that the platform itself IS the social aspect and that’s precisely what feels so foreign or unsatisfying about them. Having absorbed the wrong message for so long (and having a complete lack of the proper message) we have mismanaged our expectations of their proper place in our life balance.
All can agree if we spent a much greater share of our time engaged in activities like those from the first list then we do activities like those on the second, we would happier, richer, better-connected, and more entertained.