I was a social media intern as early as 2009 (Facebook got huge in 2006). When I was taking my journalism degree, many of my reports were about social media: The convergence of media in journalism and how Twitter was impacting the industry, What Google+ was going to be about (they were undecided then and still undecided now) and whether it was going to succeed (no), and how our rhetoric has changed in this age of social media (lol). I then used social media to get an internship, and after said internship, I joined a social media agency.
I don’t know what you think, but I think that’s a lot of social media.
It’s great to be an ‘expert’ in a specific area, but I believe that it’s important to diversify our skill set – in the early stages of our careers and even after – so that we do not fall in too deep in our specialisation that we bury ourselves in a dark pit, hiding from anything else outside our little world. It’s why people travel right? To learn and to experience other cultures and lifestyles, it helps us appreciate what we have and to help us aim for better.
Some people have lost sight of what the right thing is for their clients because they haven’t considered other solutions. It’s normal for traditional agencies to suggest advertising on traditional media, it’s normal for social agencies to suggest activity on social platforms.
I’m a big fan of social media. Trust me. I love how I’m able to get help from my friends and family to get an internship, I love that I can spread the word about of issues that bother me, and I love that I can get recommendations on a good tailor. I also particularly enjoy getting updated on the lives of others, especially if they are my boyfriend’s psychotic ex-girlfriend (no link there, sorry).
But I’ve learnt that social media isn’t always the right answer for brands and products, and it has always been very limiting. Social has to be integrated for it to work, just as ideas have to be intrinsically social to be effective. Even if the clients’ budgets don’t care about integration and social media budgets are usually always separate when it should be an ingrained cost in all marketing efforts.
So I’m not looking for a job in ‘social media’. I’m looking for a job to help brands become more human.
I hate Google+. I hate it and all the limitations that come with it. And its limitations are why it can boast about its numbers but it can’t actually make a dent in the social networking space.
How many Gmail accounts does one person have? I’m willing to bet it’s more than two, and that’s not including work email accounts that are tied to Gmail.
I have three that I’m juggling. And according to Google, I’d have to create three separate Google+ accounts for the three emails that I have and I have to keep logging in and out of my separate accounts to access different Google products all the time.
Commenting on or liking a YouTube video is the worst when you realise you’re using your work account and you have to then switch to your personal account. I’ve stopped interacting with YouTube and using its liking, subscribing, and playlist features because of the hassle.
So I spent a few hours today messing around on Google+ and deleting things on the account without actually deleting the account. I had to jump through hoops in Picasa to delete my profile photo, but I’m so glad I can add a nickname to this account so that it’s evidently not in use.
Come up with a better plan please, Google. I actually like some of your products.
If there was one question I’m self-conscious about, this is it. I’m not sure why, but working on social media strategies and social media content sometimes feels frivolous when a majority of people seem to think all I do is just play around on Facebook. That’s not true.
I play around with Pinterest, Twitter, Instagram and Tumblr too.
There are thousands of social media blogs and millions of social media experts on Twitter out there. These blogs and influencers get really repetitive really quickly – because ultimately, there are really just three main things you can get out of them:
That brands have to embrace authenticity and transparency, that they should be listening to what people are saying online and having conversations with them, and that they have to invest in content.
They are helpful in understanding social media – and I read them to find out about new tools, new apps and updates in the space. But they’re really not helpful in understanding people – and their relationship with brands. Maybe someone should start one that allows a little insight into people and their behaviours instead.