This is part 1 and the flip side will be Why Social Rocks!
Quick disclaimer: I’ve been involved with social media LONG before it was called social media. I got on LinkedIn in 2004 before it had 1,000,000 users. Was on Facebook the day it opened to Grey Hairs and No Hairs like myself in 2006. I remember well the summer of 2008 when people thought Plurk may replace Twitter…so while the title of this post says “Why Social Sucks”, I too must suck a little for spending so much time on it. Okay? Thanks!
Now, on to why Social Sucks…
Too much noise– If you’ve ever tried to promote an event or an idea through Facebook you quickly realize how easy it is for people to “tune you out”. Truthfully, it’s not that they are even doing so…the amount of things happening every second on Facebook (or Twitter for that matter) does it for them. As a “marketing channel” these tools are just a little blown out. Ha ha I said a little.
We broadcast instead of narrowcast– One of the best parts of marketing on the web is the ability to specifically target our audiences. Unfortunately, we still act like we can only send one message and HAVE to hit as many folks as possible with that. This is more of a function of “lazy” than anything else.
Too many invites to crap you’d never attend– How many times have you been invited to an event that you’re clearly NOT the target audience for? Perhaps it was for a sport you’d never play, a restaurant opening you’d never attend or an event that takes place 2700 miles from home? It’s just easier to “select all” then it is to painstakingly go through and cherry pick the people you really mean to target. See? Lazy!!
Too many people starving for attention– There’s so much “look at me” and not in the good way. It would be almost acceptable if most of the cries for attention where “I’m awesome. Check me out!!”. Instead it’s “send prayers” or “you won’t believe what happened to me”. This really doesn’t have anything to do with the post. It’s more of a PSA than anything 😉
There are no real rules– Social is still the wild west and anything goes. Well maybe not anything, but certainly far too much. Think about the last time you scrolled through your Facebook Wall or Twitter stream and constantly said wow…amazing. Yeah. Right. I just scrolled through my entire twitter stream to find anything to RT. I went through 47 posts before finding anything worthy and honestly, it probably wasn’t but it did amplify a nice message from a friend.
No barrier to entry to call yourself a pro– Or an expert or a guru or anything else. Frankly, I’m uncomfortable when people call me a Social Media ****. I don’t purport to be one. I don’t “practice” my craft. I don’t really spend that much time studying it. AND NEITHER DO MOST PEOPLE. If you’re looking for a pro in social media, figure out how to become one. It’s not tough and your voice will be the only truly authentic one for your brand. If you really can’t do it, call me and we will figure it out together.
People consider doing social doing work– “Yeah it’s kinda work. Demented and sad, but work”. Alright, maybe I’m misquoting Johnny Bender from The Breakfast Club. It’s very easy to get caught up in “updating statuses” or even worse…finding things to share. At the end of the day, most of this is far better for your ego than it is for your wallet. There are specific times when doing Social well pays dividends and we will get to those in Why Social Rocks!
The right platform still doesn’t exist- Linkedin is great for your Rolodex and is getting better with status updates, but far too many people still use it as a “set it and forget it” tool. Facebook is far more fun and people still don’t really want others doing business there. Twitter is a hot mess that you get lost in the crowd before the word go. Google + started quickly and I think someone must have yelled FIRE really, really loud. What’s needed is a place where it’s comfortable to do business AND people actually spend time.
What do you think Sucks most about Social?
Did I miss anything that should be on the list?
Is there something here you disagree with?
What kind of Social Platform would you create if you could? I know a guy that can make that happen!