Having trouble deciding what your New Year resolution should be? Looking for something challenging, or maybe even life changing? Here’s a few behaviour changes to ponder, any one of which would potentially improve my own social media/social networking experience and probably that of many others!
1. Review and update your personal profile. Are you one of the growing number of self-proclaimed experts, gurus, ninjas and black-belts in your chosen trade or subject area? Yes, you might have a doctorate, or have 30+ years of experience, but does that mean you know everything there is to know, ad infinitum? I think “expert” is an attribute that other people award, and not something that you award yourself. It looks pretentious and overlooks the fact that learning, skills and expertise are continually evolving - or maybe you hadn't noticed?
2. Manage that giant ego. You might have several thousand followers on Twitter, but do they all really want to know all about the jet lag from your recent trip, or where you're going on your next trip? Do you think we are all impressed by the fact you’ve travelled long distance or that the world is your stage? Far better to tell us something useful and interesting about the work you’re doing.
3. Switch off or scale back on those automated tweets.
Ok, so you’ve discovered IFTTT
and found that you can automate just about everything in your social media environment. (Confession, I use IFTTT for one update per month). But how do you control relevance if you’re just re-broadcasting stuff from the Internet firehose? And think twice about having an automated direct Twitter message that goes to all of your new followers, promoting your Facebook page or latest book. Don’t you think we get enough targeted ads from big business without you adding to the spam? Similarly for those automated tweets that provide statistics on how many new followers you’ve had this week. Who cares?
4. Don’t keep propagating the myth that Facebook is competing with Google+, unless you are specifically talking about ad revenue. They are entirely different networks, with different objectives, different facilities and different types of users (thank goodness). Showing me statistics on user demographics, how many minutes users spend on each network, or comparing total number of users is pretty meaningless (ad revenue apart, as previously noted). Tell me something useful, such the type, quality and relevance of the conversations.
5. Think about ways you can bring your next PowerPoint presentation alive. Camp fires have bee replaced by projector bulbs, and in the process we seem to have lost the art of storytelling. I’ve lost count of the number of tedious, text-heavy presentations I’ve attended that require a great deal of effort from the audience to (a) stay awake and (b) understand what the presenter is trying to put across. If you are a presenter, remember it’s not all about you. Think about the precious and finite time you’ve got in front of your audience and make it interesting. Don't waste their time as well as your own!
Hoping that these suggested resolutions might lead to a better experience for those who use social media and social networks to learn from and share knowledge with like-minded people.
Happy New Year!