I’ve been thinking a lot about social media lately. In relation to my photography business, in the context of how I relate to people online, from the perspective of my full time job, and in general how social media affects my life, my little corner of the world.
With all this pondering going on, you might think I came to many brilliant conclusions. (ha, or not!) Actually, I only realized one thing.
Social media is most effective when a dialogue is created.
Example: A professional acquaintance (woah, sounds fancy, eh? Cuz ya know, that’s how I roll.) was telling me a story the other day about how a simple Twitter post about a lost dog resulted a whole community passing a virtual message around—to the point that a local news station got alerted. Long story short, the dog was found (swimming in a river no less!), and social media helped make that happen.
I am relatively new to Twitter, and I’ve found it FASCINATING to follow certain celebrities (cough cough…the Glee Cast…cough cough) as they tweet about their lives. However, not only are they pushing out tweets and photos to their followers, they are also replying to their fans, re-tweeting photos people send them, promoting charities they are involved with, and….
They are being conversation-starters.
Social media used properly starts dialogue, and conversations make our world go ‘round. Simple as that. Words have serious power, and photos are worth 1,000 words, so put the two together on an instant medium like Facebook or Twitter, and well…the possibilities for the power of social media are endless.
So. I pondered. I concluded. And I checked myself. Am I using social media effectively?
I blog. I tweet. I Facebook (personal AND business pages). But I haven’t really created a community where people feel comfortable conversing with me through social media. Comments from readers on my blog are few and far between (except from my Mom, whose comments never cease to make me smile), and let me tell you, people…I KNOW you are reading. Not specifically, but I can see my number of blog hits each day. If 50 individual people read my post and I get zero comments, then I’m doing something wrong. I’m not starting a conversation.
I enjoy sharing my thoughts, my likes and dislikes, my discoveries, my successes, and my failures. It makes it all feel more real somehow, to see it written down in black and white. But if my experiences aren’t creating conversation, then what’s the point? I’ve merely pushed more digital information into an already over-stimulated world, and nothing has been accomplished.
But, I’m still new to this game. I’m still figuring out how to leverage social media for my business, and even more so how to use social media to be a conversation-starter. How to make this blog mean something to people other than me.
So. Pondering…check. Concluding…check. Changing things up? Creating conversation? Making what I do and say MEAN something?
That’s a work in progress. And lucky me…I’ve got twitter, facebook, and a blog to document the journey.
And I know you’d be sad if there wasn’t something to look at, so here’s a little compilation of photos I’ve tweeted over the last couple months.