69 Reasons Why Social Media Platforms Don’t Matter

wordsandmeaningLet’s cut to the chase immediately: I am not going to provide you with 69 reasons why social media platforms don’t matter. That is not because I can’t come up with 69 reasons because I can, but it is unnecessary.

What is necessary is gaining your attention and now that I have it here is what you need to know and remember.

The most important part of social media isn’t the platform but the people.

It is not complicated but some people need to read/hear messages several times before they sink in so I am going to repeat it.

The most important part of social media isn’t the platform but the people.

I love blogging and I love Twitter but neither one of them is worth a damn without people. If people didn’t matter Facebook wouldn’t use a body part  as part of its name. Pinterest is exciting to its users because of people.

The reason I mention this is because we are inundated with posts that provide guides for how to be successful in social media. Most of those guides offer a tiny section where they say that content is king and that you should provide value to your readers, but that is not enough for me.

The most important part of social media isn’t the platform but the people.

People remember how you make them feel. If you make them feel valued and special they will spend time with you. They will form communities and help support you and the others in the community.

I am not a saint. I won’t try to portray myself as one. This isn’t an attempt at self deprecation or me saying “aw shucks, I am just a dad.” I am a man who has lots of good qualities and plenty of bad ones.

Some of the negative ones are things that you love and some are things you hate. That is really neither here nor there. What matters though is that I recognize that people make social media run.

What matters is that I am teaching my children to look at the world around them and give back. I want them to know that they live magical lives where they might not have as much as others but a hell of a lot more than many.

They never go hungry or worry about where they are going to sleep. Their clothes are clean, they aren’t thirsty and they get dirty by choice.

One of my responsibilities as their father and a dad blogger is to teach them to give back. I do that in person and I remark about it here so that in the future they remember.

The most important part of social media isn’t the platform but the people.

This blog isn’t solely about trying to build a platform for work or to secure an agent for books. It is not solely about chronicling the lives of my children or sharing my thoughts.

It is about doing the right thing in a general sense and today it is a reminder that social media is about people and so is life.

When you give back good things happen. Every now and then we need to go out and help people. I don’t care if you volunteer or give money solely because you think it gives you good karma because if do it you might help improve a life and that is worth doing.

This isn’t me trying to be profound or insightful. It is just my attempt to weave together two things under one roof. Social media isn’t about the platforms, it is about the people and so is life.

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  1. ginidietrich June 28, 2012 at 6:31 am

    Ah man. I was really hoping for 69 reasons. Could you at least give it a college try?

  2. belllindsay June 28, 2012 at 2:05 am

    Well said Jack. I’ve met the most wonderful people through social media – you being one of them!! It unnerves me somewhat that my son is growing up with this new fangled technology (LOL) – when I see him texting and FB’ing it makes my head spin a bit. But it’s evolution, baby. And it’s my job to make sure he understands the bigger picture, as you’ve said, and understands what matters most – the flesh and blood people in his life and the impact he can have on them. Cheers, LB

    • TheJackB June 28, 2012 at 7:12 am

       @belllindsay I have the same conversation with my children about the need to remember that they are talking to people and not to beeps, pixels and avatars.
      It is such a different world than we grew up in so many ways and yet in some exactly the same.

  3. TheJackB June 27, 2012 at 10:41 pm

    @sachembacon @DannyBrown Tools are limited by the skills of the person using them.

  4. Craig McBreen June 27, 2012 at 8:06 pm

    “69” ways, huh? 😉 Jack, only you could make the use of redundant titles THIS interesting 🙂 Nothing is worth a damn without people. Um, Danny listed this but “When you give back good things happen.” should be repeated over and over, don’t you think? 🙂

    • TheJackB June 27, 2012 at 11:35 pm

       @Craig McBreen Welcome to the department of redundant department. 😉
      We’re in agreement- give back and good things happen should be repeated over and over and over… Not joking about that one.

  5. Frank_Strong June 27, 2012 at 4:34 pm

    This post reminds me of a mentor I had ten or so years ago, “People will not remember what you say, people will not remember what you do, but people will always remember how you make them feel.” 

    • TheJackB June 27, 2012 at 4:51 pm

      People always remember how you make/made them feel. That is why charisma is so interesting to me. Many of the most successful people I know are quite adept at making people feel good.
      In some ways it is more valuable than  being good at XYZ.

  6. DannyBrown June 27, 2012 at 4:24 pm

    “When you give back good things happen.”
    The rest of the post could have been crap; that one phrase would have made up for it. Thankfully, the post was anything but crap – and it showed us that @rdopping needs to get working on his commenting tech skills. ;-p

  7. rdopping June 27, 2012 at 3:23 pm

    Ooooh, I just left @dannybrown’s site. Hey, why won’t his name resolve here? How about @thejackb ? What? Waht about @bdorman264 ? hey, how come Dorman works? Ah, he’s everywhere. Hi @KDillabough you’re here too and @Soulati | B2B Social Media Marketing worked out! Probably @betsycross but NO! Crap. Wassup Livefyre?
    Anyway, I agree. It’s all about the people. After all, if it wasn’t it would all be ad space.

  8. bdorman264 June 27, 2012 at 11:38 am

    People? We have to put up with people too while we are in here?
    Some people in social didn’t get the memo on how people are a pretty important piece of the social media puzzle. They think it’s all about push marketing and doing nothing to pull people in.
    Whether I have had or will have any success in social is somewhat irrelevant; all I know is the people part comes easy to me and allows me to maneuver around quite nicely in here. As long as I can do that, I should be able to figure it out.
    You have certainly hit the nail on the head; of course with you, it was probably with your fist……….:).

    • TheJackB June 27, 2012 at 4:01 pm

      Bill, there is no better way to impress people than to use your head to pound a nail through a 2×4, or so I once heard. 😉
      Good people skills can make a bad writer look far more impressive than they really are…online that is.

  9. Ellen Berg June 27, 2012 at 7:09 am

    I’m sorry, what was your point again? Not sure I caught it 😛
    Seriously, one of my favorite sayings comes from a former principal, Todd Whitaker:  “It’s people, not programs.”  In education, people keep pushing the Next Best Thing, but ultimately, it’s the people that make or break a classroom–teachers, students, parents and community.  

    • TheJackB June 27, 2012 at 3:59 pm

       @Ellen Berg 
      Hi Ellen,
      Todd is right, it is people that make the difference. Without people it doesn’t matter how good/bad the tools/resources are. People are the difference.

  10. Sandi Amorim June 27, 2012 at 6:57 am

    This post reminds me of one of my favourite phrases, “For possibility, add people.” 

  11. CrossBetsy June 27, 2012 at 5:27 am

    The biggest challenge to me in social media is communication. And that’s a GOOD thing!! At least there are real people with real thoughts and feelings to communicate with!!
    There’s an element of social media that will always make it a harder platform to manage than Real Life….the absence of voices and faces that add depth of understanding to words. But that barrier lets me develop patience with real people and hope for patience to be extended to me.
    It’s quite a platform to be experimenting with and learning from. I can’t imagine a life without it. Well, I can, but I can’t go backwards and try to live that life anymore! I’m different because of the people I’ve met. And I like that!

    • TheJackB June 27, 2012 at 3:50 pm

      It is true, lack of facial expressions and the ability to hear tone does make it more challenging. Sometimes post are completely misinterpreted and misunderstood because of that.
      I am with you regarding the benefits we received by making new friends and meeting new people.

  12. KDillabough June 27, 2012 at 5:07 am

    “It’s about the people and so is life”. “nuff said:) Cheers! Kaarina

  13. Soulati June 27, 2012 at 4:21 am

    I’ going to say one thing…”the most important part of social media is the people.” Couldn’t have said it better myself. Hmm, wonder if this comment will appear; something is funky. Glad you’re back in force. See you soon.

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