How Social Media Fits into Normal Life

When I tell people my job is in social media, they usually smile and are polite. But I know they really do not get it. Many know of Facebook but do not use it to it’s fullest. They set up a personal profile and share their business with their friends and family every once in a while. Some may have a fan page but are clueless how to grow it or really market what they are doing. For many in my local community, they think I play on the computer all day and get “free stuff” mailed to me. They do not see the hours I put behind the scenes building my following, connecting with brands and educating myself.

To be honest, I gave up explaining my work many years ago.

Our little rural school greatly benefits from my work. I am often sent swag or products without prior consent. These are considered gifts and I am pretty much free to do what I want with them. Lately I have been donating them to the school as filler for the raffle baskets and prizes for the kids. Sometimes the principal likes to offer a prize as an incentive for kids to go above and beyond. A few times clubs have needed items for a specific activity and I was able to reach out to my contacts for help.

Last night I was at our school’s PAC meeting, something I have been doing since the school year began. We were taking about a better way for the group to communicate day to day outside of the meetings. Any time we need to vote on something last minute we have a hard time getting the group together. Most of us all are busy, work or have other obligations. We have been chatting via Messenger but the notifications were driving people crazy. I know you can turn them off, but try to explain this to a bunch of technology challenged moms.

My suggestion was for our school PAC to have a Facebook group. Something private to just us where we could discuss events, activities, volunteer positions, hot lunch and even meetings if someone missed coming. Everything would be there for easy access and the entire group can post and chat as needed. The other issue we had with messenger was inviting people we were not “friends” with to the discussion. In a group we can invite by email or share the link for others to request to join.

Unlike messenger, conversations are easy to find and you do not need to scroll through chit chat to get to what is important. All of the parents present were surprised nobody had thought about this sooner.

After suggesting the Facebook group, the other moms looked at each other wondering how we would set this up. AGAIN I stated that this is part of my day to day job. I told them I was happy to do it and could set it up to fit the groups needs. I had one set up and posted for them all to join before many of them even got home from our meeting.

Within the school itself we use groups on Facebook to connect with the parents in each class. Our town even has a Facebook group to post local events and items for sale. Social media doe snot need to take over your life. It can fit easily in your life and help you organize your day and your activities.

When moms talk to me about their business, their farm or even their hobby and how they can share it with the world, I tell them to open an Instagram account. Yes you can start a Facebook page, but it is hard to get new eyes on your stuff. On Instagram you can follow people and use hashtags to attract the customers you want. A local mom who makes jewelry started following people in her niche and commenting on their stuff. She used local hashtags after our chat and told me since she has noticed a huge jump in her engagement. You can not just put up an account and expect things to happen without working on it. I also encouraged her to try Instagram stories. Showcase how she wears her pieces and her lifestyle to be more relatable to others. In just a few short months she has had great success and has been able to expand her client base.

Social media is free to use (for the most part). So you have nothing to lose and everything to gain. It is a great way to communicate with your customers, an online portfolio and a great customer service tool. You do not need to be on every platform to succeed. As a consumer I have shopped at many local stores and visited local restaurants because I found them online.

These are just a couple ways I am seeing people using social media in their daily lives. Families use Facebook and Youtube to keep each other up to date when they live far away . Twitter is a quick way to get information out and to be more accessible to your customers. Instagram is all about the visual. Hair dressers, cooks, travel agents and personal trainers are just some of the people I see posting their products and services for others to see.

Not everyone who posts online is posting selfies and constant spam. Many are posting for a reason and to reach a specific audience.

How do you use social media in your normal life?

 

 

Comments

  1. NJ Nowoselski says:

    We live in a tiny rural area too. Our family uses social media to communicate with relatives and friends who live far from us. I love it to see pictures of all the children or just as a reminder for birthdays and such.
    Though with all the changes social media is doing ex adding content I don’t want! – as in advertisers that are unverified etc has really cause me to rethink what I post, search and share. This past holiday I looked at my mom (visiting from SK) who loves Facebook. Without exaggeration she had 100’s of followers she did not know. She did not understand FB. She did not understand “Fake” is very rapid on Facebook. It was a big eye opener to all of us. If she doesn’t understand what about all the kids on Facebook etc. I guess I don’t trust social media anymore. I don’t trust they are doing anything in my best interest but instead looking at their profits only. Yes, it is great for communication but the other stuff sucks.

  2. kathy downey says:

    I use social media daily to communicate with relatives and friends who live far away,it’s certainly a great way to stay in touch !

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