What would Alfred Hitchcock have to say about social media? His film Rear Window (1954) hits the premise of social media on the head. The film is about voyeurism. And as the script reads ”we’ve become a race of Peeping Toms.” Sixty years later I think Alfred would agree.
Why are so many of us addicted to Facebook? Because we arguably enjoy watching others and being watched–this is not mean to sound creepy. We are interested in each other’s stories. And Facebook helps us tell the story of who we are through old kindergarten class photos, political/social causes, music and sometimes even photos of our breakfast.
While I try not to bore my networks with photos of my breakfast, I manage my online social profiles with openness. Just like jumping into the ocean when it’s really cold, first you dip your toe, then up to your knees, then your waist and then you adjust and dive in. Slowly we are submerging ourselves in social.
Social Media and Business?
My progression into social media for business was slow. One podcast show turned into a blog, which gave me the courage to do video interviews and eventually other media. I slowly fell in love with content creation and sharing.
And I’ve come to terms with imperfection. I can’t omit all the “ums, ahs, likes or you knows” in my podcast interviews. It’s all out there, floating in cyberspace…forever.
And in addition to all the media out there I still have moments where I’m conflicted about social nuance. This includes which friend requests to accept, reject, remove etc. And just like in real life there’s no one size fits all rule book. It’s generally a “case by case” “use your best judgement at the time” type of situation.
And most of us are still pretty clumsy with this–the blind leading the blind.
Some smart people are trying to solve these issues with us–well maybe not the venting issue mentioned above, but the two areas that are still sort of vague for most of us: enterprise 2.0 (internal collaboration) and social CRM (external collaboration).
You Really Want All That Stuff About You Up There On the Internet?
At a certain point we will have to learn to lose our self-consciousness. It’s a small sacrifice we make for the rich returns we get from sharing. This includes ignoring “the tyranny of public opinion.”
It’s no secret that a lot of us are still clumsily trying to leverage social media internally and externally. There is a lot of talk about brands “losing control” but what about our own individual brands?
How do we maintain our privacy without alienating people (friend requests dangling in limbo)? How do we avoid hurting people’s feelings and maintaining some kind of control over our own online personaes and profiles?
Again there’s no one size fits all solution, similiar to the fact that there’s no one size fits all solution for organizations and their social strategies.
More questions raised include: How can we participate without revealing too much? Do I really want my parents to see the same photos my friends see? My boss? My colleagues? My customers?
I mentioned I had a friend who was visiting the doctor for a very personal check up.
The doctor obviously was a very personable and warm individual, told my friend to add her on Facebook. Just in case of emergency. If the doctor was off duty, she could easily be pinged in an emergency.
The dialogue went sort of like this:
Doctor:“Just add me on Facebook!”
Patient: “What? Really?”
Doctor: “Oh of course, just don’t write on my wall asking for the results of your test. Once I had a patient who wrote on my wall ‘did you get the results back from XXX test?’”
[And it wasn't a test to check a fever]
While consumer packaged goods companies seem to be leading the charge leveraging Facebook to understand consumers, other industries are awkwardly following suit–out of necessity more than anything else. The use of Facebook for business will only progress.
But do businesses really want to always be watched? And what is the best way to watch customers? What would Alfred say?
So what are your opinions on public versus private? How much do you want to share? What are the dangers with Facebook and Enterprise 2.0 or Social CRM?