So this morning, after I dragged myself out of bed, let my dogs out, and checked my email, I got on Twitter. I saw this news article from Fast Company that was really interesting to me: is.gd/f8uOM. It’s called: “The Seven Deadly Sins of Social Media”. It details people and companies who use social media in all the wrong ways to try to get business.
Due to my past, being a foster care worker for the State of Good Ole Michigan, I have really high privacy settings on my Facebook and personal Twitter accounts so that people that I don’t previously approve can’t see my information. Therefore, I don’t have gobs of friends on either site because they can’t even search for me! However, there are so many people who just add friends to have friends, without any real reason for having them. They actually remind me of our 13 year old “little brother” through Big Brothers/Big Sisters. He would add a cute girl who looked at him on the street if he knew her name. That may actually come in handy for him down the road lol…but for now it’s just weird.
People in businesses are the same. It’s one thing to add people, or suggest that they “like” you. But it’s another entirely to add hundreds of people, to in turn never interact with them. I’ve tried very hard to at least talk to the people that I follow on Twitter via Code Format. And not by sending them a message asking them to utilize our services. I try to reply to their updates, or ask them questions that don’t have anything to do with technology. I am not going to shove my product down their throat. Would that annoy me if someone did that to me? Yes. Therefore, I am not going to do that to them.
Am I perfect? No. I will promote this blog via Twitter and Facebook, but I promise that I won’t post a link to your wall about it. I do, from time to time, post an update with nothing but my web address. I do re-tweet the FollowFriday’s that Code Format gets. I’m not Super Chief Communications Officer by any means, but I do try to market in a way that’s not annoying. You won’t see me going door to door around Three Rivers asking if people are interested in having their computer repaired. But I did go downtown last week and pass out cookies to the businesses to introduce myself. (Sorry to all of you if they tasted badly!). You will see my business cards around Kalamazoo and Three Rivers, but I won’t be walking around local festivals, shoving them into your hand. I know better than that.
I truly think that it’s all about putting yourself in their shoes. When people come up to your door, trying to sell you windows, what do you do? I get annoyed, and tell them I am not interested. So why would you do it? When someone you never talk to, and have no desire to talk to, sends you an annoying invite to a group because they lost all of their phone numbers, what do you do? Ignore it? Then why do you send your penpal from middle school, who lives in Nova Scotia, an invite to your third cousins bridal shower? It doesn’t just apply to businesses, it also applies to regular, standard, human beings. Put yourself in their shoes before you click.
Have a good week!