Being in the social technology business, I’ve come to realize that consumer social media and social business software have one pretty important thing in common – ME! Every social app and software vendor promotes “collaboration” as their primary benefit. Collaboration is cool, but it has become such an over-used buzzword that just makes me roll my eyes. I want to see real results; how does your social tool make my daily life better, easier, and more fun?
The irony of the social media revolution is we are all already social creatures; it’s part of our human makeup. So every social technology claims to make you social, when in fact they are allowing you to be you – just the way you are. They aren’t making you do anything that you don’t subconsciously already want to do; they are just giving you a new avenue to do it.
And for those of you shaking your head no, being social does not imply being an extrovert (eloquently addressed by my colleague, Brian Kellner, in a previous blog post). It’s not about being an introvert or an extrovert. It’s about being human; it’s about naturally wanting to share, learn, and communicate in any method or language you choose…and on your own time. I want that at home and at work. I want my social software to learn my behavior, learn my preferences, and deliver information to me that I think is important. Yes, that means showing posts by my family members first and foremost in Facebook, and showing posts by my boss and immediate teammates first and foremost in Social Sites (our social platform that I use to do my job every day).
My whole life I’ve always wished that I was born 30 years earlier so I could have lived through the civil rights movement and the second wave of the women’s movement to be a part of those monumental experiences in our culture. But then I remind myself not to take the present for granted and realize that I’m living through the technological revolution, the gay rights movement, and now the social media revolution. It’s so empowering and inspiring to see change every day, whether it’s some new technology that I just can’t live without, or new legislation that gets passed to make this world a better place, or even being able to instantaneously start a video call on my smart phone with my nephews who live 2,000 miles away.
So what I’m trying to say, the social media revolution is all about me. And you. And everyone we know. Yes, this revolution is strongly tied to technology, but it shouldn’t scare you. Embrace it. Make the social tools in your life work for you. Demand that the tools continue to evolve to be better, be human - and work the way you want, the way you live. That is what we do at NewsGator every day. Viva la revolución!