Does social networking work for those of us who are not particularly social? What about those of us who are private by nature or have concerns regarding privacy in general? Are any of these platforms great places for introverts to hang out? The simple fact is, you can be effective on social networking sites and you don’t have to be particularly social in order to be so.
I know this to be true because I meet or exceed all of the above mentioned concerns. My focus tends to be task oriented. I’m intently private with all those who I am not close to. My cynical nature constantly fuels my privacy concerns. That being said, there is a HUGE difference between somebody who is social on the surface and somebody who is relationship oriented to the bone. Who will be more successful in the long run? The social butterfly who flits from person to person at a party or the relationship-builder who has deep and meaningful conversations with the few?
I know a lot of folks who are very much like me who have not yet made the move to becoming active on social networking sites. Here’s my advice if you wish to consider a move …
- If it makes you uncomfortable, don’t do it. I closed down my FourSquare account because, frankly, the whole thought of somebody knowing where I am and what I am doing flat creeped me out.
- If there is something that you don’t want people to know about you, or what you are thinking about saying is intensely personal and reserved for the few, for cripes sake, don’t put it on the internet. Assume that anything and everything that you say or do will be read or seen by others. Apply that filter and you will be fine.
- Don’t be concerned about how well you are doing it, just do the best you can. Your best will already be far superior to what is already out there.
- If you are worried about whether or not your contributions will be appreciated, don’t be. Those who like what you have to say will be attracted to you and those who don’t won’t. It’s no big deal and it’s just like everything else in life.
- Maybe you will like Twitter but you will despise Facebook. Being active on one out of two is far better than being inactive on two out of two. Facebook, for me, is an uncomfortable platform at best but, I have learned to use it in a way that gives me both pleasure and comfort. OK … I tolerate it 🙂
And my biggest piece of advice of all? Don’t dismiss off-hand that which you have not investigated. At lest make an informed decision and roll with it from there.