I think I’ve mentioned how much I hate the marketing sheen on blogs and social media these days. I’m like an old fart, lamenting on the “good ol’ days” where blogs seemed more genuine and heart-felt and nobody was trying to shill you their book/product/coaching services through every blog and social media post.
Most of the advice on how to use social media are catered to people who want to use it for marketing purposes.
However, what if you are just an ordinary Joe or Jane? How do you use social media?
Here’s how I use social media:
Frankly, I still don’t know what Twitter is for. (And neither does Twitter, I think!) I find the constant stream of tweets and information overwhelming and stressful.
I believe that if you’re a celebrity or an influencer with a sizeable following already, Twitter is a powerful way to connect and share information with your fans and followers.
That’s why lots of Malaysian politicians and activists keep social media accounts. It is one of the best ways for them to answer questions, get feedback and share information in real time.
And since I’m none of that, I usually use Twitter for two things:
Connect with influencers (meaning, ask them questions or give feedback to them).
I use it as a glorified bookmarking tool/rss feed. If I come across articles I really like I’d share it on Twitter.
My Twitter profile is at https://twitter.com/liztai. I post links on minimalism, personal finance and writing.
My Facebook is where I can be myself and keep in touch with friends. Therefore, I’m very selective of who I accept in my circle. These are the people I trust with my true self. Generally, it’s my happy place; I want people (and that includes me) to laugh and be delighted on my FB. Thus, I’m ruthless at cutting out people who cause any disturbance to that.
Generally, I hardly post on my feed. I usually share cat and dog videos or comment on some triviality or another. I spend most of my time on Facebook Groups. I’m always commenting on my favourite groups. I’ve made several friends this way. I love that!
However, although FB is my “me” space, I still have some rules. I don’t:
Rant about work
Rant about people I dislike
Behave like a jerk
There’s a place for this. It’s called a diary.
I only started being active around March this year. I was initially skeptical of LinkedIn’s power, but thought there’s no harm trying to tap into its supposed networking power.
After ensuring that I achieve All-Star status on my LinkedIn account, I began posting career-related posts and share links.
I also began putting up some of my blog posts as articles on LinkedIn. I’m in no way a power user. (And I find the constant fawning over LinkedIn influencers highly annoying.) Still, I managed to get some traction on it. Since I started optimising my LinkedIn with the right keywords, I started getting interview requests from recruiters. In the month of August, I was literally bombarded - that was right after I changed a few keywords on my profile!
It was a most interesting experience indeed.
So yes, LinkedIn does help you get jobs - but you have to put in the work in order to be visible to recruiters. And that means posting more content.
Visit my LinkedIn profile to see what i’ve done.
When I became a member of a start-up digital marketing agency in Australia, I was told that I need to be on Instagram. (Basically, if you work in digital marketing, it is important to show that you are active on social media because it’s a demonstration of your skills.)
Back then, I didn’t quite understand WHY I was on Instagram. I just posted photos of food I ate (like 99% of people I suppose!).
I became intrigued with it after handling a company’s instagram account. Because I had to find ways to tell the company’s story through photos, I now find it a fascinating challenge.
For example, you can keep a “bookstagram” where you don’t just post covers of books you’ve read, but write detailed reviews in the photo captions.
So, yes, I use instagram like a mini blogging platform. Each photo usually has a detailed caption where I share a thought, post, something informational.
And although I know it’s better to niche my instagram (such as, be a bookstagrammer or travelgrammer) I can’t niche to save my life. I keep a nicheless instagram account, and I always will.
(You can check out my instagram at https://www.instagram.com/liztaiwrites)
Do I need to be on everything?
If you’re not a digital marketing professional or have dreams of building a massive influencer empire, you can use as many platforms or as little as you like.
There’s just one rule to using social media, really.
Don’t be a twat.
It’s that simple.
Happy social media-ing!