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I can't understand why people are frightened of new ideas. I'm frightened of the old ones. John Cage

Social Media is a Mexican Beach Vendor

The title is a bit vague, but read on and you will find clarity for certain.

There is no doubt that Social Media has taken the internet world and overall communication by storm.   The amazing communication breakthroughs we see taking place everyday are truly remarkable and improving at an incredible rate.  Seems glaringly obvious why everyone would jump on the bandwagon.   We truly live in an amazing time, don’t you think?

Let’s take a little stroll south of the border for a moment.

Have you ever been to any number of tourist beaches in Mexico?  Have you ever been able to enjoy some relaxation without getting hassled to buy a plate or some genuine Chanel sunglasses.  I swear.. they are real….  Perhaps your name on a piece of rice (very useful to have around)?

Now, we have Social Media and a Mexican beach. 

Here’s the deal.  Social Media handled poorly is very similar to the “sales people” on the beach.  They are relentless in their approach.  You could be gazing into your loved ones eyes and they will gladly interrupt you to see if you want what they are selling.  They don’t speak the same language and don’t even care if you have a need for their product.  Showing value is not on their list of priorities.  It is strictly a numbers game for them.  They know that if they approach enough people they will likely get a sale.  Pretty simple and elegant in some ways, but completely annoying and horrible for building relationships.

This exact approach is sweeping Social Media like a virus.  People are constantly trying to sell, up-sell, side-sell… you get the point.  They are not speaking the same language.  They are not providing value.  They are not sharing with the intent to engage in a conversation.  They are simply looking for numbers in hopes to get a sale.  If you are looking for numbers then be transparent about it.  Don’t even bother throwing in a worthless post about your weekend because you simply appear less authentic.  Be yourself and live up to your call center mentality.

However, if you truly want to create something worth spending all that time tweeting and posting about then shake their hands in the virtual world and mean it.  You don’t need 1 million friends or fans if you are using Social Media the way it is intended and most useful to you and those in your network.

Adios.

April 21, 2009
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