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My Social Media Conundrum

OK…I’ll begin by admitting that I’m a card-carrying Baby-Boomer, which means that computers, doing business on the web, smart phones, Facebook, Twitter, etc…are second nature to me, and that I have grandchildren who continue to amaze me with their understanding, and their simple, no-questions-asked acceptance of, the global community we live in today. That being said, I also think that, on the whole, I’m not doing too bad with all of it. After all, we have an on-line workshop registration system on our site, and our customers can click-and-buy video training materials,  and they can purchase a download of an e-book if they prefer to do it that way rather than having a CD mailed to them. And, I do some Facebook and Linked-In, and I think that I’ve both provided, and derived some benefit from those activities, which is the way I believe it’s supposed to work.

But, I’ve got to say that I’m still trying to figure out whether or not the Social Media Boom actually works the way some people say it does. That’s the conundrum that I’m puzzling over.

I recently had the opportunity to attend a Fred Pryor seminar on the subject of using social media, and the pleasant and talented fellow who served as the presenter said that he used social media extensively in his “consulting” business. He showed examples of his Twitter activity, his Facebook account, and he explained how he used YouTube, where he posted a video every week from any location he happened to be in at the moment. And, he also said that he posted all these videos, tweeted, and updated his Facebook page while he was on the road doing workshops for Fred Pryor (which is fundamentally a situation in which a person is a contract employee, being paid a given amount of money for presenting at a workshop, and also earning a commission from the the ‘back-of-the-room’ sales), for three weeks out of every month.

Hmmm……am I missing something here?

All of his examples were in regard to __________ Consulting, with no reference to Fred Pryor (purposefully, to be sure), and these activities were designed to bring in business to his consulting firm, yet, he spent 75% of his time in the employ of another company. Call me skeptical, but, if all the tweeting, updating, and video-blogging is designed to generate leads, and ultimately, result in a sale, why hasn’t it, over the extended period of time he referred to, resulted in at least a 75/25 _________ Consulting/Fred Pryor mix rather than a 75/25 Fred Pryor/ _________ Consulting situation? (If, in fact, the ________ Consulting firm does actually result in 25% of his income…)

The other questions that are on my mind about social media in general are:

What if all this noise that is being pumped through various social platforms is really just that…..noise?

What if having a ton of followers on Twitter is really just nothing more than having a ton of followers?

What if all this level of mass connecting is really just contributing to space pollution that creates confusion for more people than it helps?

If you reply to a discussion on Linked In with a direct link to information on a product that you offer; one that will provide benefit and be of value to those involved in the discussion, but it winds up being deleted by the discussion creator because they think it detracts from the purity of the on-line discourse, and seems more like a “sales pitch”, is that what’s supposed to happen in the world of social media?

If you are under (or even over) 30, and you have insights on this subject for me, I’d love to hear from you.

Until next week….

Learn from yesterday…….Live for today……Look forward to tomorrow.