Why so serious, social media?

Businessman sitting in an office and using a laptopThis post is a result of joking around on Teh Twitters with Josh Sternberg, who pointed out that social media, God bless it, has a tendency to get blown way, way out of proportion in terms of, well, everything. Of course there are some things that the deserve the hyperbole–you know, like the snowmaggedeon/snowpacolypse. But being the pragmatic, rational people we are, when we see people make overblown statements it just makes us wonder, “Hmm, what’s the real message behind this message?”

And looking at this from a post-modern perspective, we understand that everyone’s reality is different and there are different perspectives on any given topic, but relying on the snake-oil salesman approach will eventually catch up to you.
Examples of things people might tell you about social media:

1. You should capitalize the phrase Social Media.
2. Social Media will save your floundering industry.
3. You will make a ton of money with Social Media.
4. Social Media Experts will help you rake in all those piles of money.
5. Jesus, Moses, and Elvis would use Social Media if they were still with us. (Actually that would be pretty rad. But whatever, it would also be rad if dinosaurs used Facebook; doesn’t mean it’ll happen.)

Do you want to know what social media really is?

1. Social media is a way to talk with people. Do you like people? And talking? You might like this.

2. Social media is a tool, just a piece of the communications puzzle.

That’s it. That’s all. Can you use another way of talking to people as part of your business? Of course. Just don’t overthink it, or fall for someone who tells you that the only way to do use it correctly is this way or that way.

Just something to think about when you think about the future.

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  • It seems to me that if you're using social media just to be saying you're using social media (the same way that some said 10 years ago, “we gotta be on the Internet so we can say we're on the Internet”), then you're talking just to be talking. And nobody wants to listen to that kind of talking.

  • I love this, you make such a good point. Social media is admittedly cool and is a great new communications tool, but you're right: it's just a tool, not the end-all solution to everything wrong with the world today.

    Solid post, y'all. 🙂

  • stephmajercik

    This post is great. Simple and to the point! I love social media and it definitely has its benefits but at the end of the day there is still more to life than social media.