The Joys [and Toys] of Social Media

by Lesley

As a fairly recent player in the Social Media (SM) scene I’ve had the time of my life this year learning about marketing my wares and meeting new people.

It all began when I stumbled into Ecademy many moons ago, overcoming my fear of being present on the web, later joining in with all the chat on Twitter and Facebook and culminating in 2011 by blogging (after much ado!) with a more open approach to Social Media marketing.

I discovered Empire Avenue on Twitter, after disregarding requests from a few SM friends to sign up. This is where I also began to discover my [business] focus; playing the game was extremely empowering for me as I quickly learned the language and ways of working, enabling me to succinctly state my raison d’être.

At first I was dubious; unsure of the purpose and unsure of my own abilities. I was often praised for my achievements in raising my share price and re-assured that I should carry on doing whatever it was I was doing.

The main problem with that was – I didn’t know what I was doing!  

I asked around, posing questions to friends and new acquaintances already involved with some aspect of Social Media, to finally realise that I naturally network; engagement with people comes easy to me.  Within a short time I got to grips with what it was all about and with a little encouragement from others, I really got into it.

I even became confident enough to blog about what I was learning and applying – increasing my net-coverage and opening up another  enjoyable empowerment tool to me.

I have a superb mentor who has guided me through each stage of setting up a new website and blog – assisting me at every turn and converting my doubts to a reality where I manage my Social Media ‘stuff’ simply and easily; instead of manually adding every link I was introduced to Social Media Toys – all the tools of the trade to make your [SM] life easier and much more fun!

I’d be utterly foolish not to mention my most favourite and most useful Social Media networking tools while I have the chance (forgive the self-promotion!) – listing my top 5 being the simplest way to do it;

Apart from maintaining relationships on Facebook, Twitter and LinkedIn my MOST favoured medium has been HootSuite – for ease of use, multi-platform interaction and for reducing and improving time spent on maintaining a presence.

Scoop It! comes next as it provides the option to add, curate and share a variety of topics from the web or via my trusted connections – some of which are work oriented while others indulge my sense of humour, describe personal power or promote places of peace.

This is followed closely by StumbleUpon – a vast, guaranteed source of information (on virtually any subject) to share while promoting others in the process. It’s great fun too; I often while away the time between projects.

Xee.me has very recently made an appearance, is still in beta-mode but is proving to be a one-stop social networking tool with the freedom to choose which platform you engage with your customers, clients and/or potential collaborators. It keeps all of my sites in one place but is entirely visible to anyone who chooses to find out more about me or my services.

Pinterest is the latest craze on the social media scene – attracting those of us who enjoy visual stimulation by sharing and having the opportunity to see others’ interesting photographs. Some of these are personal shares, some are business operations providing glimpses of fairytale dresses or kitchen ware and others are of natural beauty.

Social media has already overtaken traditional advertising where we’ve previously been ‘told’ what to buy, where to go etc, to the point where buying power alone, is back in the hands of the consumer.  And the good news is – it’s hardly even started!

Many are now utilising real-time customer service across the web; some who realise the value and shifting power of social media, are achieving great results where others fail miserably.

One such organisation who appears to hope that bad press will ‘go away’ is Groupon UK – they set themselves up using social media – Facebook and Twitter being their most dominant, relying on those prized customers to market on their behalf while generating huge profits.

Groupon’s customer service department care little for the experience of customers who are unable to fulfill purchase deals when offers flood poorly equipped websites or they’re unable to supply the goods.

They’ve chosen profit over people. Wrong move.

2012 will break all previous records in blogging and sharing as we move into the next phase; companies and branding agents will have a field day but the purchasing power will remain in the hands of the buyers, so we’ve gotta make good.

Get over your fear or resistance, skill-up and prepare to become fully you – Social Media awaits your presence!

I provide personal and group breakthrough training to ease you through the process of becoming Fully You.

I cover the full spectrum of Personal Development  including Personal Power workshops, Team Building and Stress Management – all enhancing Personal Responsibility & Accountability.

This is an updated version of The Joys [and Toys] of  Social Media which was originally a Guest Post on iSocialyt.

About Lesley

Lesley Rodgers has written 146 posts on this blog.

Personal Development Consultant and Confidence Coach. Lesley is also a committed Human Rights Activist with her heart firmly lodged in 'community' and collaboration.

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