Acquired skills are a funny thing – sometimes you procure something that you never expected to be an asset. When I was sixteen years old, my mom would tell you that Facebook was the biggest nightmare in her life, and this “book of faces thing” would never get me into college, never mind a career.
In its humble beginnings Facebook was a place for college and high school students to connect and publicize all the latest social drama. To people like my mother, Facebook and other social media were considered to be a black hole of time, hours of homework and productivity were lost to browsing personal information that people posted about themselves. The point of that was lost on my baby boomer parents. Fast forward 8 years and that “media social” thing that my parents lost sleep over has now landed me in some pretty cool places in my career.
By no stretch of the imagination do I consider myself a “social media guru”, but hours spent on websites like Facebook and Twitter, especially in college, allowed me insight into my own generation as well as a cyber-universe of knowledge at my fingertips. I find out about a majority of news from hash tags or a sudden burst in Facebook statuses.
(*It is important to note that I find out about news from social media, I do not become informed about issues and/or events from social media. That is a distinction that I believe Generation Y needs to distinguish about itself, we know to travel to the source to find out all the facts, we do not all simply rely on cyber word of mouth.*)
Social media is a gateway to creating a buzz or the latest trend, one retweet or powerful Facebook endorsement can send the smallest video, picture, meme, or business viral in a matter of a few short hours. If you can harness the tool correctly it can be a burst of fresh air to a dormant business, it is the easiest way to create a grass roots movement. Thus, I have spent the last few years learning everything there is to know about using social media and I have some quick tips:
- Anything old can be new again- in the world of social media you can make old news “hot” again just by liking, commenting, or retweeting something that was posted months ago. Something as simple as a new “like” or “comment” on an old picture or status, refreshes it on your friend’s newsfeed.
- Nothing attracts a crowd like a crowd– the quickest way to draw attention to something is by having a burst of likes, favorites or, retweets in a short span of time.
- Beware of the “overpost” – posting or tweeting about the same thing too many times in a short span of time can sometimes make you the girl (or boy) who cried wolf to friends on your newsfeed. When a post is truly brilliant, it might be skipped over by friends who are reading their newsfeed under the assumption that your post has the same content as your previous 2 or 3 posts or tweets.
- A sense of humor opens all door- people go on social media, especially at work to be briefly entertained. A play on words is key in this business and it is a sure fire way to draw someone’s attention to your post. If you can be funny, it will be memorable.
Maybe one of these small tips might be helpful, maybe none of them will, however social media has entered into the stratosphere of our daily water cooler conversations and it is important that we know as much about it as we can.
The “latest craze” my mom feared would plummet my grades has now helped me land my first job. She even caved and has a Facebook profile of her own, and yes, we are “friends”.