I don’t want to like Facebook. I really don’t. There are things about it that really bother me.
But as someone said recently, “After Facebook, the next biggest digital thing out there is, well, the internet.”
Sadly, (kinda) true. And our modern reality.
Full disclosure: I do like the fact that I can keep an eye on friends and family, and see what they are up to. I do enjoy that. But the real reason I continue to invest in Facebook is that it continues to be the largest driver of traffic to my various websites.
And that’s a reality I cannot ignore.
This was on my mind recently when I had a birthday, and as expected, I received several hundred birthday greetings from people I am connected to. For this, I am always grateful. But when I was scrolling through and looking at the greetings, I didn’t know who some of those people were.
And this bothered me.
Of course, there are platforms where I prefer to connect with people I do NOT know: namely LinkedIn and Twitter. And of course, over time, my strategic position on utilizing a specific social network is ever-evolving. But with Facebook, I want a more intimate connection to a contact.
Now, I am NOT saying that I don’t like to mix business and pleasure on Facebook. In fact, a growing amount of the connections I regularly interact with are business contacts: clients, partners, associates, and yes, prospects. I rather enjoy interacting with prospects on Facebook: it is the BEST way to observe who they are, what they do, and what they care about.
That is, in fact, the best part of Facebook: my intelligence gathering mechanism.
And then recently, to complicate my thinking (in a good way), Robert Scoble, a gentleman I’ve interviewed before, put out a post that made me rethink some of my tactical moves on Facebook. [You can find that here]
Now, it’s true: I used to operate from the position that it was more impressive to an audience that I have a lot of friends on Facebook. The social proof thing. So, I made it a point to connect with lots of people.
But today, I no longer care about that. Instead, I want meaningful interaction with people that I do care about.
So, you will notice that I’ve removed a bunch of people as friends. These are people that when I looked at their name, I didn’t know who they were. Or, I couldn’t recall why I was connected to them in the first place. Finally, on rare occasion, the relationship was no longer important to me.
If that’s you, well, I am sorry. Clearly you haven’t been engaging with me on the platform (or I with you…).
I’ve implemented several of Scoble’s tactical moves suggested in the link above. And I can already see a difference in my feed.
On the whole, I am spending less and less time on Facebook. Mainly because I am just so busy with other things (like running and growing my business).
But when I am there, I want the time to be meaningful. I want to engage better with close friends and family. I want to engage better with current clients. And, I am not afraid of saying, I want to engage better with future business contacts.
Facebook isn’t going anywhere. And every day, I see signs that it will continue to become more fully embedded into the fabric of our daily lives. Can anyone say Instant Articles, as well as the EXPLOSION in people viewing video content on FB? And yes, I am trying to understand the implications of all the media I am producing out of intrepidNOW, and how that might get more integrated into FB.
Thusly, I aim to maximize this platform as best I can. You should focus on that as well.