Social Media - It's simple, why overcomplicate it?

Currently I am working on a new project with my sisters marketing firm (Elaine Ball Technical Marketing Ltd) where I will be giving social media workshops. I am super excited about this opportunity as it means that I get to travel and meet lots of new people while discussing and sharing ideas and things I have learnt about social media. I also get to be more involved in an industry that is still learning about opening themselves up to the world and perhaps make some kind of difference. It also happens to an industry that is linked with my own. 3D Modelling - 3D Laser Scanning & Surveying of course! 

Look I am so loyal to a brand I have to include it in everything I do. #iheartsketchup

I am making my way through Mark Schaefer’s Social Media Explained, I haven’t got very far but I am already inspired to write about it. What speaks to me is the simplicity of it all. As Schaefer says in his book 'people are sick of being sold to, advertised to and marketed to'. 'People want to speak to people. Social media gives people this'. 'Business is all about building relationships and through social media we can build relationships not only locally but globally.' I love this. Lets strip away all the sales chat and marketing jargon, lets be human again and simply build relationships with fellow humans.

The beauty of social media is that it is a platform for which you can be yourself and get to know people on a more personal level, moving away from the pop up ads and impersonal cold calls and emails. As Schaefer explains in his book, social media is the new town square. It is a big conversation with everyone but it can be more direct, you can actually find your customers and others interested in the same things as you, same businesses as you, but whats even better is that we are no longer restricted to our immediate circle to build trust with local customers, but social media allows us to build relationships far and wide. Simple right?

So why did we overcomplicate it in the first place? 

Throughout our education in life - school, university or simply society - we are told how to act, how to be in interviews or act a certain way to maintain a business attitude/ look or the right and wrong way to do things. It is drilled into us so much that we lose who we are. Hence why a lot of people have mid life crises or 30 something year olds still don't know what career path they should be on. This is because we have not really spent the time learning about what we want from life - we have been learning about how we should be, how we should act and what type of job we should have - we have not been focusing on discovering who we are as people and what motivates us individually, what makes our heart sing (Carmine Gallo, Talk Like TED.) Of course this is the fault of our society today and we are all guilty of falling in to the trap.

With this trait from society we over analyze everything we do. With this attitude in business we are taught to think of sneaky and clever sales tactics and marketing campaigns to cheat and trick people. We are basically taught how to be manipulative, sneaky or just simply force something onto another in order to make money. But this is unnatural (to most of us.)


Of course not. What I have learned is that we don't have to. We can be ourselves and we can interact at a human level. In order to be human again, we have to strip back to the basics. It is not about being sneaky and manipulative. It is about being selfless and helpful (Schaefer). It is all about building relationships with people. It is all about sharing and helping each other out. And thats it. Business relationships are built on trust. Why are we always looking for the quick fix of 'how can we quickly make X amount of money?' - not caring about our ethics and values while doing so? Does this make us happier? Wouldn't you be happier if you did things that made you happy, made others happy and made you money, the compromise being that it might just take a little longer? We should be working towards the bigger picture. And the question is simple- What do you want from this life? Do you want a negative, manipulative society? Or do you want a caring, helpful sharing society? A growing society? If we work on this it may take longer, but in doing so we create lasting relationships and loyal customers/clients who give us repeat business, who respect us and in turn bring the money side of things if that is what you are waiting to hear. Lets stop overcomplicating it and just be humans connecting with humans.

Its true. I am loyal to a few different brands who are based near and far solely from getting to know the people that work for the company through social media, they are people that inspire me daily and whom I want to learn from. They feel like friends, it might be as simple as retweeting one of my posts or giving me some time with a simple reply or like. With this two way connection, a relationship is building. I start to trust them and so in turn I trust the brand. I will support them as much as I would support my family. I mean this in the sense of competition. Sure there might be a better product or service out there but I have built a relationship with this particular company, my loyalty is with them no matter what. It takes time to build relationships but once you have done so, you stick by your friends. Social Media is a powerful tool and we should all be utilizing it to share who we are, by being ourselves, being passionate and building relationships. And it is as simple as that. Build a business by building on your relationships and value your existing customers. Let social media help you to do this.

‘Humans buy from humans’. Lets get back to basics.