Why Social Media Isn’t The Be-All & End-All in Small Business

Social media is pretty cool. When I was a kid in the ’80s, social media came in the form of taking polaroid photos out in the street and having your friends pin pics of you up on their bedroom wall. Or I bought a “Girlfriend” or “Dolly” magazine to find out the latest celebrity goss. God help me…..

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(Image courtesy of robotchile.com)

Now, we can tell everyone what we are doing, at the time of doing it,from exactly where we are and how and some people really want to know this. Some people thrive on “spying” on what others are up to. The instantaneous nature of social media sharing is probably one of the most profound phenomenons of my time. At the ripe old age of 31 years, that’s a lonnnnnnng time right?

We can send instant messages, we can repin, tweet, google+ and link up in networks.We can join private, secluded groups, we can blog, we can email and chat online. Business life has certainly been made a lot easier in many respects. Time management and information sharing are the biggest winners in the age of social media (Sorry Australia Post, but your snail mail is just not cutting the mustard anymore!)

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(image courtesy of thebookclubblog.co.za)

Sorry Aus Post, but this snail delivers faster mail than you. And with a smile on his tiny slimy snail face.

I know my father (bless his beautifully daggy soul) would be so into iPads, tablets, Skype, Wifi, and all the gadgetry that has come about over the past 10 years. Gadgetry has literally changed life as we know it. I now can strangely say I don’t know anyone who doesn’t own a smartphone and or a tablet. Even laptops are becoming a bit mehhhh.

In a lot of ways, social media is really “sharing” rather than being typically social. Yeah, you can interact with people, even strangers, but as I remember it, being social was going out and meeting people, spending time with people you know and sharing face to face.

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(Image courtesy of http://english.alarabiya.net)

Are you one of these “phonies”?

I think social media has given people a sense of confidence to hide behind a screen or smartphone and proudly boast about their business successes which is great, good on them. But could they brag in real life? Do they have what it takes to network in a room full of strangers? Could they stand up in front of a crowd and tell people why they are better than the rest? And how they can solve the problems of the world’s business-minded folk?  And why you should “befriend” them and “like their page”?

I’m a big talker. In fact, I’m known to dabble a bit in waffling and or gasbagging from time to time. I think talking and sharing face to face can create so much more of an impact than sharing images and business tips online (I do this, I know). But being able to “talk the walk and walk the walk” seems so much more amazing than “sharing, commenting, liking, tweeting, repinning and status updating”. And there’s nothing like having a few community connections here and there, don’t forget “it’s who you know, not what you know”.

I just want to chat, have a cuppa, receive some good advice, have a laugh, take some notes (because I know some UH-MAY-ZING entrepreneurs) and really get to know people in business. I want people to know who I am first, and what I do for a living second.

Face to Face over Face-to-Facebook any day.

Just my humble opinion.