The title of this post could be laughable.
But I am willing to risk that.
Simply because the power of social media has changed my life and primarily in a very good way.
*b* list on social media for making it in business and life
*connection - at first it was hard for me to believe that real relationships could begin online.
But I can honestly say that I have met some of my best friends in real life through social media.
It’s also a great way to stay connected with family, friends and clients near and far.
Staying in touch with clients is so easy via social media too.
*authenticity - I think if we are real online, it comes through and we attract likeminded people with similar values.
So whether it’s personal or business, we are able to “get to know” people before we actually meet or have interaction.
Case in point, my clients typically sort of know me before I work with them.
I can relax and not feel like I need to explain myself or what my philosophies are as much.
*relevancy – I think when people who are business owners try to avoid social media, it’s like shooting oneself in the foot.
Whether you choose to believe it or not, resourcing online for all of our needs has become the norm.
I google EVERYTHING.
I ask my clients how they found me and almost 100% say either they found me via google OR word of mouth.
So either way, the presence we have as business owners online is vital to surviving in business.
I get referrals from people who aren’t even technically my clients, but they know of me because of my online posts.
*philosophy - Since I believe I am an ambivert (mix of introvert and extrovert) I think social media is a great way for me to share my life but not have to be out and among people all the time.
I do recharge in my time alone.
But at the same time, I’m very outgoing and want to meet the people I am connecting with, so I don’t avoid real face to face social contact.
This visual sharing through photos and thoughts is so therapeutic to me.
I have shared here on my blog and posts online that I have always integrated my personal and business life.
That being said, I have had a real problem with sharing my professional photos on IG.
I felt like it was not true to form with the whole idea of IG.
However, I am going to convert to the dark side.
Recently while I was at WPPI, I met two talented young photographers who were attending the same photo walk as I was.
Bob Davis was the instructor and on a sidenote, he is an amazing master of any kind of light you give him to work with AND he’s a great teacher.
We were chatting as we walked back into the MGM, and a conversation came up about sharing professional work on IG.
Nicki put up a great argument for sharing both professional AND personal shots on IG.
She really made me think about it and how I need to be willing to change and go with what works.
So, very soon, I will begin sharing both professional and iPhone photos on my IG account.
It’s not like I can’t identify what is what.
I thought about having a business and personal account, but I think that would get to complicated for me and I would do neither.
Being willing to change with what is current without compromising standards is something I need to embrace.
Staying stuck and being stubborn is not beneficial.
*using it as a platform - we all have things we believe in, even if we think we are very neutral people.
I think it is great to be able to use social media for what you believe in.
Whether it be fighting racism, child abuse, terrorism, or taking a stand for the underdog,
sharing our love for our family or sharing our faith.
It’s a place to be heard or at least FEEL like we are being heard.
*sharing - related to using it as a platform, but in this case I’m thinking of it more artistically and practically.
Usually artistic and practical wouldn’t seem a likely pair.
But most creatives have a desire to share their work AND life or at least ideas.
Although it starts off with a healthy amount of fear, we usually are so driven to share, that the fear is overridden.
We put ourselves out there and receive the feedback (or not) that we want and maybe even need.
The practical side of this, is that along with wanting to share my work, I want to share my ideas and practical solutions.
I probably often sound preachy and maybe part of that comes with age?
But I just have this undeniable and compelling need to share.
This post is a perfect example of that!
But I believe it all ties together.
The need to connect (point number 1) and the sharing.
We share our authentic personal and professional self, and we connect.
I believe a part of this has to include cheering each other on.
As I scroll through FB, Twitter and IG, I love to “like” images, ideas, thoughts, lovely circumstances and beautiful work.
Being truly happy when we see each other’s lives. or even in sharing sorrows with each other.
Hopefully we all put our social media and phones aside to have face to face relationships and encounters.
Once again, it’s all about balance.
But I believe that denying the presence of social media is denying that you live in 2015.
I may be older, but I don’t want to be irrelevant or out of touch.
Hopefully there will be a handful of people who I can connect with, and all of our lives will be enriched by this connection.