“Social media? Isn’t that for kids and self-absorbed nerds?”
“Blogging?! That’s fantastic! What does it do?”
As a blogger, these are some pretty typical responses I get when I pitch the idea of blogging for a company or for a professional who wants to get ahead. We’re either really excited about blogging, but aren’t quite sure how it’s useful, or we think it’s a waste of time.
I understand and actually really admire the friends I have who want to keep things old-school and have never registered for Facebook, Twitter or blogging accounts. I still love it when I get a real letter in the mail. And a personal conversation will probably always be the most effective way of truly communicating with someone.
Being just on the edge of Generations X and Y, I remember the days before the Internet. I remember when I had an email account that I checked once a month. It took me a while to get used to texting — why would I do that when I could just call someone?
Now with more advanced social media, I know some people (mostly my age and older) are wondering why we should share daily details of our lives with an ever-increasing network of people. My basic pro-social media arguments are that it is:
Easy to use
Capable of providing greater privacy protections than you might think
Kind of like a huge, digital Rolodex that constantly updates itself
But the folks at Socialnomics.net posit that social media is much more than fun, and that it has the potential to impact our world on the same level as the Industrial Revolution. A few stats from Socialnomics.net:
It took Radio 38 years to reach 50 million users
iPhone applications hit 1 billion in 9 months.
If Facebook were a country it would be the world’s 4th largest between the United States and Indonesia
80% of companies use LinkedIn.com as their primary tool for finding employees
25% of search results for the world’s top 20 largest brands are links to user-generated content such as blogs
78% of consumers trust peer recommendations. Only 14% trust advertisements!
Successful companies in social media act more like Dale Carnegie and less like David Ogilvy — listening first, selling second
Successful companies in social media act more like party planners, aggregators, and content providers than traditional advertisers