I’ve spent a lot of time on social media. The majority I do because of my job, but I also do plenty of it for my own entertainment as well. I’d say that I’m in the top 1% when it comes to social media. I have probably 120k followers across all my accounts. I don’t say this to brag, but to merely say that I’m pretty deeply entrenched in the world of social media.
What’s interesting for me is how I try and approach and learn new social media platforms. Quite frankly, Twitter and Facebook make up the majority of my social media time with LinkedIn a close third. Although LinkedIn definitely feels more like work while Twitter and Facebook are a mix of work and fun.
I’ll set those 3 social media platforms aside and instead talk about all the others out there. I’ve played with most of them. None of them have really taken off for me. However, I continue to dabble and see where they go.
My approach to new social media is to just start using them. I usually joke with whoever I’m with about how amazing I am at this new platform for which I know nothing about. I literally feel like a little kid trying to learn a bike for the first time every time I try a new social media platform.
My latest experience was trying out Periscope (I want to try Meerkat next). It felt like G+ hangouts, but not quite as dynamic since I couldn’t have anyone else join me. Although, I was surprised at how simple it was for me to start broadcasting live video of me. In fact, I could have done it from any of the 8 different devices in my home. I think that’s going to massively change things. It will just be ubiquitous for my kids. They won’t think anything of it.
Today if you follow me on Instagram, then you might have seen the wave of pictures I’ve posted. It was part of me still learning the platform. I could see how Instagram makes a lot of sense for parents who are at homes with their kids. It’s fun to take pictures of kids and even more fun to share those pictures and get feedback. As I sit in front of my computer all day at work, what pictures would I share on Instagram? Unlike some of the people I work with, I assure you that people don’t want to see a picture of me working.
The learning process on all of these is a challenge. Snapchat is the weirdest of all of them for me. I’m still learning why and when I’d want to use it. I haven’t really figured it out. Although, here’s my approach for learning these new social media platforms. I usually start using it when someone is around (often the Crash Wife). I then start posting pictures (almost all of the new platforms are picture and video if you haven’t noticed) to the platform. I’ve found that diving in head first is the best way to learn.
After a rash of posts and interactions on these new platforms I then start telling whoever I’m with “I’m so good at [insert new social media platform name here].” Of course, the comment is dripping with sarcasm and always elicits a laugh from whoever I’m with since it’s not true. I’m not sure why I do this, but I’ve done it over and over and I’m sure it will continue. It’s probably a way for me to build my confidence on something for which I have no confidence. Building a confidence on a social media platform is a challenge. Although, it’s so powerful once you do.