It was barely a year ago that I abandoned Facebook. Tired of fuzzy food photos, lame likes and unfunny jokes revealing the differences between us instead of the common ground we share, I turned it off. I blamed all of you. Of course, the first step to solving a problem is often the simple act of taking responsibility for the outcome. Last January I returned, not to Facebook, but to being virtually present.
It started with a focus on three attendees of my January 2015 future trends presentation, Doug Wilder, Clare Dreyer and Kimberly Deas. The perfect guest list of dear friends and new acquaintances. I friended, followed and engaged them. Shared both their triumphs and their trials. Then it grew.
I now count among my friends Julian, the “World’s Best Sign Flipper and a mysterious woman I’ve never met who takes pleasure in “toe selfies”. I follow Ian, New York’s youngest theatre critic, and posted selfies of Momma Betty as we rang in the New Year and her 88th birthday.
Now that you’ve recovered from that New Year hangover and you’ve resolutely abandoned those silly resolutions, here’s my hope for you. May all the days of 2016 be Just Another Day In Paradise, for you and your community of friends. Here are some thoughts on becoming virtually present in 2016...
The Art of Virtual PresenceAs we discussed at the 2016 trends session on Saturday, the Internet is not about technology it's about connecting with people. It's about adapting technology to meet the human need. Here are some ideas you may find valuable in 2016.
- Be all in. Liking is lame, Commenting creates value, Sharing is a gift.
- Being “Interested" in an event comes with an asterisk, “*unless I get a better offer.” Do, Or do not. There is no "interested".
- Self-promotion is both ignorant and ignored.
- Hate is both ignorant and arrogant. Those who agree with you, already did. Those who don’t, never will.
- Engagement, intelligence, listening are the watchwords for your investment in social for 2016. Social media is not a fad, it’s your competitive advantage.
The Art of Digital Leverage
If increasing revenue is a 2016 resolution for your business, consider employing the art of digital leverage. Two simple strategies are all you need. Extend your reach by inviting new contacts into your community. You will see an immediate increase in prospects. Go deep with your existing customers. Engage them on social, be a part of their lives, their hopes, their dreams. Find a way to make those dreams come true.
2015 was both challenging and rewarding. They say that it’s a crisis that reveals your true friends. For me, the truth is they found me. I couldn’t write last year. Now I can.
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