You've watched. You've listened. You'd like to dive in and really get to grips with social media. Here's how.
by Emma Rodgers
When I was asked to write a blog for Comms2point0, I was excited but then the reality struck. What could I write that would be interesting enough to post on a creative, knowledge filled web site targeted at comms professionals?
And that in a way sums up my recent social media journey – am I interesting enough? Don’t get me wrong – I’m not a complete Luddite.
I’ve had a Facebook account since 2007 and a Twitter account since 2009 but it’s true to say I’ve been a sporadic watcher and definitely not a commentator.
And I’ve never been convinced by people who feel they need to tell the world their inside leg measurement or the full ‘ins’ and ‘outs’ of how they’re dealing with breastfeeding on-line.
But as Bob Dylan said ‘times they are a changin’. And I’m now clear that for someone in comms who’s committed to her profession, watching is no longer enough.
While I’ve written a million things on behalf of others, it’s now time to stand up and be counted as me, myself and I. And that means putting yourself out there.
I’m now five days into my new social media commitment and feel very excited about the opportunities ahead. Personally I think it’s still like being part of a secret cult when you talk to friends and family [maybe it’s the groups I mix in] but already I’ve had some nice welcomes, been involved in useful discussions about social care white papers [probably yawn for most but it worked for me] and put myself out there a lot more than I ever have in the last three years of my twitter life.
It’s opening up avenues too. In my day job I’m working on a way forward for our social media channels and feel so much more informed to have these discussions because I’m actively taking part, not just watching from the edge. I can appreciate how we, as a comms team, need to be helping others to do this too. It’s about being better able to advise on the parameters and the key issues from direct experience.
I know I need to still do more – for starters, spend some time finding people I want to follow - but I feel I’ve made a giant leap ahead already. And in a week where Groupon cashed in on selling 45 quid social media workshop places to nearly 10,000 people in less than 17 hours, it’s clear social media is only going to get bigger and bigger.
So while I’m still not convinced I’ll have interesting things to say, I’m at least now standing up and being counted. And while I may be a bit late to the party, I reckon it can only get better from here on in.
P.S. If you’ve taken the time to read this post, you could always follow me too [not that I’m desperate of course but I only have c 20 followers] @EmmaRodgers
Emma Rodgers is senior campaigns officer at Staffordshire County Council.
Sign up for our weekly email digest. You can do that here.