Archive for the ‘Facebook’ Category

Using Facebook As Your 911

Friday, November 6th, 2015

“Why Does SHE Put Everything out of Facebook??”

I hear this often from people that never have had to use Facebook to get to people, all the people that may need to know information about a change in a life’s circumstance.

Illness, Death, Change or “Situation”

Try changing your relationship status as an experiment.  You may be surprised at how many people pay attention.  Even if they don’t comment, they pay attention and you may see them in the grocery store and they ask about it.  A friend of mine did that as an April Fool’s Joke and didn’t she cause a stir!

Extended Family, People You Work With

For the good and the bad when my Dad was dying last year, I threw it out on Facebook.  Why?  Quite simply because after long hours and stress of driving to see him, sitting with him, getting the news, for weeks on end, I was just too tired to tell all my relatives by phone or even by email what was going on, play by play.  icon_facebookPLUS, I was losing my patience with those relatives that hadn’t been in my father’s life for years that all of a sudden felt entitled to every minute detail of what was happening with him.  And in the end, it didn’t matter they never bothered to make the effort to show up to the funeral or send a card anyway.  I was grateful for Facebook.

When I would show up at business meeting looking tired and sad, people had empathy and hugs, not smart comments or private whispers of judgment of what may or may not be happening in my life.  I didn’t have to tell them, Facebook did it for me.  OR if they didn’t see it on FB, then someone else did and there was another story I didn’t have to tell.

Double Edged Sword

A couple of weeks ago, I heard  someone say, “I thought everything was ok, they didn’t say anything on Facebook about it.”  So yeah, you have that too.

Who is the REAL person on Facebook anyway?

Tuesday, March 25th, 2014

It is difficult for me to go anywhere without some conversation that doesn’t include the word, “FACEBOOK” in it. Many times it is accompanied by rolled eyes or heavy sighs.  Other times it is expressed with gratitude that there was some news shared that people felt important to know about and still other times sad news shared and supportive comments are given.  In every case, I have heard opinions all over the place regarding sharing or “over sharing.”

thumbsupdownHere are a couple examples – not direct quotes but close to it:

  • “If I see one more picture of those dogs (kids) I am going to scream.”
  • “I just love seeing those funny dog (kid) pictures! “
  • “I get to hear about her mother dying on Facebook, I didn’t even know she was sick!”
  • “OMG her mother died, I had no idea – I wonder if they need anything?”
  • “They go to the beach, umbrella drinks and sand, I get to shovel snow.”
  • “Man, all that sun, I wish I could get out of here and put on some shorts!”

There are plenty more but the comments are amusing when you think of it,  it is a demonstration of sociology/psychology right in front of your eyes in REAL TIME!

What Do You Do on Facebook?

If I am having a rough day, there are “friends” of mine on Facebook I visit to get a humorous pick me up. Or, if I have someone on my mind that I know that has been “having it rough,”  I go to their page to encourage them with a couple of humorous or kind words.  But that’s me.

What about you?

If your comments are negative, people see it.  If your comments are positive, people see that too. Only you may not realize that opinions are forming around your comments, posts, etc.    People  may say they don’t care but it seems to be human nature to judge people.  Now with Facebook we have yet ANOTHER way to judge people!  Oh Joy!

YOUR BRAND

If you are trying to “Be” something or “Do” something about or with your life, it isn’t a bad idea to remember that you may be reaching more people that you don’t see every day than those that do see you every day.  The ones that see you, see ALL of you. Your smile, the hug you give someone, your real warm self.  Not a post that they are left to interpret.

A little food for thought.

What Do You Think About Facebook Posts?

Friday, January 24th, 2014

Is there a Facebook YOU and a Real YOU?

There is a woman that I know from a networking group that always tells me how much she loves my Facebook posts. Almost every day that she gets on Facebook, she looks me up to see what funny thing I have to share.  Well it took me back a little.  Here is a professional woman whom I admire immensely, bothers to approach me and tell me what I post starts her day off to a good start.  Stunned.

And for me too, there are those people that I look up to see what kind of snarky, playful fun can be going on because my day isn’t necessarily going the way I wished it was.  As I have written several times in this blog, Facebook is a great escape for people at one point or another during their week.

The Old Fashioned Way

A few years ago I wrote a post about people taking what they see on Facebook at face….VALUE.  And it seems that the same people that use the excuse that they “thought” they knew your life was okay because of what you post on Facebook are probably the same people that wouldn’t call you to find out anyway.  But that is another post for another day.

NEGATIVITY

I have some people that I know in real life, like the ones I see in person often, talk on the phone thumbsupdownto often and they seem like happy normal people.  People that I drink coffee with, have over to my house.  Remember THOSE kinds of people?  Well on a particular day when I was looking for a lift and went to Facebook for my daily dose of fun, I went to one of my friends pages and it was some negative thing about some corporation, I looked again and there was something else until finally after searching for a while, there was something that had nothing to do with the government or something ELSE we have no control over.  I know this person.  I know what a positive loving person they are!  Yet to look at their page, you would think, “Why am I friends with this person?  Which one is real?”

What about the First Amendment?

Now before you get all rabid on me, you are right.  This is an individual’s page and in the spirit of free speech, that page can say whatever they want it to, right?  But I have a dilemma – do I “unfriend” the person because the politics and rampages are just driving me crazy OR do I tell I am going to do it first? And on a philosophical note,  which is my real friend?  The person that I hang out with, laugh and cry with or the person that spews anger through their Wall?

Why Do People Spend So Much Time on Facebook?

Thursday, December 5th, 2013

I thought about giving a bunch of stats on how much time people spend on Facebook, how many pages people look at, how many friends they have.  But then I thought to myself “The amount of time is staggering, who needs to see those numbers again?” Rather than griping and sniping about people being distracted or not getting their work done BECAUSE of Facebook – I say this with tongue in cheek, as humans we CHOOSE to use Facebook as a distraction.

Distraction

From work, from life – to work, to life.  Facebook has it all.  People we LOVE  we can connect to and laugh with because we are stressed or worried. Or to gripe about “that guy” that just stole our lunch again out of the company fridge or “that guy” has left his lunch IN the company fridge TOO LONG.  You can see it all on Facebook and the numbers I am not citing here prove it but you know it all ready, you do it, I do it, we all do it.

What Does This Mean?

Advertisers know about you because Facebook asks you certain questions and tracks your every move so they can make money based on your habits.  Yes. The ads you see are based on this behavior.  AND if you have a business, perhaps this is an option where you should advertise. But what does it REALLY mean in the grand scheme of things?

Connection, Caring, Love, Laughter

We all love to do the things that make us happy and often times we even love to do the things that don’t make us happy. The RUSH of it all, make us mad, fire us up, we cannot get enough of it.  Or if you are me, I cannot get enough of seeing it happen on someone else’s wall, I watch until I cannot take it anymore.  But I do it.  A distraction.  Also someone posts that their dog died, their child is sick, I reach out in support, share comfort. Makes me feel like I am doing something that matters to someone.

We Are Human

If you participate in “Buy Local” then you probably go to some stores with owners that you know.  Or people in your neighborhood at home or work that you would like to know.  Maybe you know them on Facebook, maybe not.  If the store  has stuff you like, you may go there but I find myself going to places because it is the people I like.  I like them, their stories they are part of my life.  I like the connection. I want the connection, don’t you?

Same Old Story Same Ole Song and Dance

I have written several times about using Social Media in addition to cultivating friendships and business relationships.  Not instead of “people to people” connection.  A dirtbag in real life often is a dirtbag on Facebook, it may be harder to spot but eventually the real person is revealed.  It comes down to being a member of the human race, reaching out and wanting connection.  OR DISCONNECTION.  Real life is blowing up and you can run to Facebook for help and support.

But let’s not forget we are people first and not technology.  Besides computers hug funny.

 

What ARE you DOING?

Monday, April 8th, 2013

You know, Who You Are…or Who “They” Are.

Those people on Facebook, Twitter and the like that use these platforms FOR THEIR USE ONLY. Then see what everyone else is doing, maybe to use it as a tool to ambush someone or tell YOU about something THEY learned about a person on Facebook and make snide remarks about it.   I am at the point of doing a few things:

  • Ditching them as “Friends”
  • Unfollowing them on Twitter
  • Should I block them all together?
I have posted more than once the idea of the Social Media Stalker mentality, how we ALL know the selfish people in our lives behave the same way on Social Media as they do in real life.  It is not pretty sometimes.

THEY Want Something:

The best thing about Social Media is that it is much easier to see the pattern than it may be in real life.  There are time stamps and in most cases a “feed” so you can see the activity. (IRL=In Real Life)  You hang out with your friends, they hang out with others and it always comes out – most often not in the same group that brought up the topic in the first place.  You do not see it in real life  as easily or quickly.
In Social Media vs. face to face it is:  “Did you see what Miss Whozit said on Facebook?  It seemed ridiculous, I cannot believe it, what a loser.”
YUCK YUCK YUCK…

Knowledge is POWER

When you live in a small town, like I do,  rumors run around town fast and with Social Media it is even more LIGHT speed.  People that never had knowledge before, now have it, use it and ‘make hay’ with it.  People that are your “FRIENDS” on Facebook may not be your “FRIENDS” as we know true friends to be.  To me a true friend is someone that would come to your Mom’s funeral, shovel you out in a pinch, pick up your kids at daycare when you are not feeling well, call you to just say, “I Miss You.”  You see where I am going here, right?

This behavior comes down to a simple thing my mom always said (and still says today):

“If you aren’t going to say anything nice about someone, don’t say anything at all.”

MY 2013 version:

“If you are not going to get into the conversation, offer support by posting something on their wall or call the person because they are crying out for help in a different way then – SHAME ON YOU!
Are we just “bullies” in an older form?  Sermon over.
*Disclaimer:  This post isn’t because this recently happened to “Yours Truly”, but I heard it about it.  It makes me go “Bo Bo, so beware.”

 

A Routine Doesn’t Always Mean it is ROUTINE

Thursday, March 28th, 2013

People ask me, how do you know all these people?

A Schedule

A lot of what I do each day isn’t seen by everyone at once.  But then i am pretty sure that is that same for all of us in one way or another.  When you are in the Marketing, Public Relations or Social Media fields, there is a certain “roll with the punches” attitude that comes with the territory. But there are certain things that I try really hard to do each day (even weekends) before that day gets away from me.

Challenge One:  Time?

Most of my “sleuth” work begins before many people are just rolling out of bed. (This excludes my early morning radio and TV friends).  I am a light sleeper so often I wake up in the middle of the night and rather that lie in bed with my head spinning of what I could be doing, I get up. Usually grab a water and start reading blogs or collecting information for future content needs.

I also check in of Facebook and LinkedIn and see who I haven’t been in contact for a while (many of my “friends” are business contacts) and see how they are doing.  Since so many people are of the thinking that, “Since I posted it on Facebook, everyone knows about it.”  But the algorithm that Facebook uses for news feeds there is nothing further from the truth.  Since I have recently crested 1,000″ friends” I have realized that many of those I haven’t contacted in a while aren’t in there.  Lesson:  Don’t expect Facebook to make sure you see every post you wished that you saw.

I check in on Twitter, always a helpful source for content that people share as well as what people are doing or what is going on around town/state/region.  I follow a lot of folks that are really “plugged in” and don’t mind sharing what they know.  Twitter is an easy and relatively quick way to get into the groove of things. I share, reply to folks and “retweet” as well.

I check Google+ and sometimes depending on what I have seen on Facebook or Twitter I may post a link there and comment on others information.  I am finding I am using G+ more and more as I develop my circles and share with potential and existing clients the information that I find.

Challenge Two:  Early Morning Meetings

I serve on community Boards as well as attend breakfast networking functions, some as early as 7:00am.  After my middle of the night “work session” I often go back to bed for a few hours but this is impossible on a morning when I have to be up, showered and out the door.  After the meeting or breakfast is over I find wireless someplace  and if I couldn’t get through my “TO DO” list in the wee hours then I finish it up then. Check my multitude of emails.  And sometimes this includes “the old fashioned” type of communication, writing real notes by hand or calling folks for a bit of “one on one.”

There it is in a nutshell.  I try hard to make sure I stay connected with folks, that is the most favorite part of my job.  The “virtual” part of my job has evolved over the years and having somewhat of a routine is really important to me. When no one is standing in your office doorway asking you for something makes this routine important to making sure my network is still MY NETWORK.

 

 

 

 

Forget About “Getting It”

Monday, March 25th, 2013

Over the years I have heard from business connections and friends – even old ones (because of Facebook).  That don’t “GET” some social media application.  Usually this is said in a disparaging tone and if  they  SAT down and learned about it then maybe they would.  Try taking time out of Facebook for ONE day and put that time into the application or platform that you don’t “GET.”

Any platform that is new is a bit uncomfortable at first and some of them are such “Flash In the Pans.”  They are gone before you get a chance to try it out.  In both cases this is frustrating because if you are in business you have limited time to learn new things.

Before you dive in, think of 3 things:

  1. What is my goal in using this new platform?
  2. Who is my target market?
  3. And if my business is a B2B, then who are my target market’s customers?

Let’s use Twitter, for an example:

1. Your goals can be simple.  If you are a sales or maintenance person on the road, it may be helpful for you to know if a business or plant is closing due to weather, water main break, fire or construction delays.  Perhaps your team may not hear about these things through tradition methods? 

Would you  want to communicate with the press?  Would you want the media to come interview you about a topic instead of your competitor? Make it easy on the media to keep connected with you.  We all like good publicity or stories and we don’t have to pay for it, all the better.  And if you haven’t noticed, the media uses Twitter.  So start following them, it is easy and free to do.

2.  Your Target – what are your potential and current customers using to communicate?  Go poke around and punch in a few names that you know.  If there is a customer out there that is unhappy with a product or your service are they making nasty comments about you and you aren’t listening how can you fix it?  Or if they have something going on at their business or plant, spread the word through your network.  Good Will matters.  Using Twitter especially to help someone is a lot more popular than just pushing out “BUY MY STUFF” messages.

3.  Supporting your base: If you got a phone call or text from someone saying,  “I am looking for ________  – do you know where I can buy it? ” When I get calls like that,  I think of who my customers are and go to that database in my head and recommend my customer first.  If I don’t have a customer then I refer them and often times it is someone I have been in contact through a social media platform.  Often it is Twitter.

A platform like Twitter is the new water cooler conversation, before the water cooler,  it was other conversations involving face to face meetings, church, kids activities other networking events.  Twitter is networking, connecting and getting to know a wider audience that you may never been able to reach before.

But back to a goal for a minute:  If you use Facebook then what was your goal there?  Watch out for your kids?  Are they on Twitter?

Follow Me if you like!  @LadyoTrout

Will Twitter or Facebook cause World War III?

Friday, June 10th, 2011

It is amusing to hear some members of the main stream media mention that Twitter could be blamed for so much of the unrest in the Middle East.  These recent outbreaks of violence, demonstrations and the like have been happening in the Middle East for thousands of years – yes there was life before Twitter.  People demonstrate because they are passionate about something.  Twitter and other social media platforms were used to facilitate the assembly, no doubt. Texting also helped.

Just like when you want to meet your friends or kids somewhere you probably text them.  Many folks have cell phones without data plans and still can get text messages.

The point here is that you communicate, you find a way.  Many parents I know ONLY started texting because that was how they could reach their kids.  I have one friend who refuses to carry his cell phone most of the time because he wants to TALK to his kids, not get a random text from one of them asking for money!  He wants to connect to hear their voices as opposed a text that he feels is impersonal.

Yes. Texting allows you to be in one place and communicate with many others. But while you do that what is that person across the table looking at you thinking? How about, “I guess there are others more important than me…”

It is so common to see people in appointments and meetings looking down at their cell phones, disconnecting with where they are to wonder what maybe better or more important, fun, etc.  Feel insignificant yet?

And lots of people, your “friends”  know what is going on in your life because they cruise your Facebook page and you never even know it.  Have you wondered where face to face relationships will be in 10 years?

All this leads to a communication breakdowns, misunderstandings, hurt feelings all because we are not taking the time to ask for clarification of a compressed text message or those dreaded “tweets.  It all is kind of scary to me.  I am taking a page out of one of my friends book and leaving my cell phone in my bag when I am with a customer – whether I am in a meeting with them or at lunch with them.  He always makes me feel like I am on his “Important List” and I have noticed.

What will you do to make people feel like they are on  your “Important List?”

 

 

The Facebook “Blow-Off”

Wednesday, November 10th, 2010

Facebook has made my life simpler in some ways and complicated at the same time – during the day I can love it and hate it several times depending what is going on.  Then I guess it is not Facebook’s fault, Facebook allows me to see the good and bad in people in more of a constant barrage of information, once again it is the people not the messenger (Facebook) right?

Facebook makes it easy to feel bad that you cannot donate to every cause that people support.  Facebook makes it easy for people to invite people they hardly know to events that they would never invite them to in person, because hey, they like you, but not that much.  Facebook allows people that you “friended” in a weak moment to know what you are doing without becoming involved in your life, giving you support or feedback.  Facebook allows you to invite people (not randomly chosen), to an event many tell you they are coming and they cannot wait – then don’t show.  No call, no email note, nothing to say, “I know I RSVP’ed and you made extra reservations/food, but I cannot make it.”

So what does this tell us?  This isn’t Facebook’s fault.  We have all heard from our parents and perhaps some of us have even said it ourselves, everyday our society seems to be getting just a little more disconnected to the HUMAN side of things.  People give you the finger after they cut you off when you are driving, athletes engage in all out brawls on the fields, tracks and courts, parents post videos on YouTube of kids fighting while they cheer the fighters on.

What is this world coming to?

The other day a friend of mine and I were talking about “Random Acts of Kindness” and how good they make you feel when you do them.  She reminds her kids daily to do ONE nice thing for someone else – no matter how small it may be.  And of course we may say, “Isn’t that sad, to have to be reminded?”  But I say, “Hallelujah!  Parenting is back!”  Don’t ever take for granted what your kids may or may not know, especially when it comes to manners and it also reminds YOU of the importance of common courtesy.

I have another friend that always says, “Thank You.” Even when you aren’t sure it was required, but it is that reminder to me that I need to say it more often if I am questioning if a “Thank You,”  was necessary.  He even says it when he “Blackberry Messages” me.  And now I am making sure I do it too – it makes me feel better seeing it on the screen whether I am getting it or sending it.

Chris Brogan has been saying “Be Human” for a long time and it all sounded good to me, but I wasn’t exactly sure what it meant, the more I become involved and use Social Media tools and the more I see people I know using these tools,  I can really appreciate what “Being Human” means.

So think about doing your part today to say or do something kind for someone. And remind a young person in your life. The more chat rooms, comments on blogs, texting and “facebooking” we do, the less connected we become.  But we still ARE human and we all need to remember that.

What will you do today?

We ALL Know “That Guy!”

Tuesday, September 14th, 2010

It started when you were a kid.  The person that looked at your paper during tests, the person that wanted “help” with his/her homework, or that person that read the newspaper over your shoulder in an airport.

What do all these people have in common?

Stop Drinking from the toilet!

Stop Drinking from the toilet!

No initiative, no original idea, easier to “steal” from others than to give up anything themselves, because “Hey, let the other guy do all the work or pay for the newspaper.”  I am noticing this is really easy to do when it comes to Social Media. So easy to lurk and be anonymous. So easy to take someone’s thoughts and make them your own. Most of the time it doesn’t bother me, but some days it really does.  I guess today is one of those days.  Some folks are new to this game, so I understand and they certainly get the benefit of the doubt here. But there are many folks in the “Marketing and Media” profession that are takers and they always have been, if they had gone to the same high school with me they probably would have cheated off my French tests.

Today, they are the people that want to connect with you on Linked In or “Friend you” on Facebook, “Follow” you on Twitter.

Here is a blog post from Chris Brogan that reaffirms really what this is about.  If you are one of the “professionals” that monitors tweets or Facebook content and never provides any help or input to anyone that you are looking at, then this is for you.  Of course Chris does it in such a nicer way that I am feeling right now, he is a grown-up afterall.

I read Chris’s stuff for inspiration for when someone has hurt my feelings, for when I need to learn.  Chris is a “giver” in the “UBER” category.  Not all of us, (which includes me) can do what he does…but we can try.  And in the long run, it does pay off, I truly believe that.

So the next time you are checking out someone’s Facebook page, leave a note.  If you use Twitter, retweet someone’s brilliance or find one of your own. Look around you and see what you can share with the world.

PS. I got this photo from this blog, you may find it as amusing as I did!