How do you use Social Media?

How do you use Social Media?

To say that communication has changed over the years would be an incredible understatement!!!

As Facebook, Twitter, Instagram and so many other platforms have emerged, the way people communicate with others has also changed in many great ways and, as is often the case, it has also changed in some not so positive ways.

For businesses, it has revolutionized how we get our message out. At the beginning of my career in the late 70’s, we relied on a print-based media which had its challenges. We had to have our ads in at least a week before the paper went out and the shelf life of that paper was very short and very expensive. Often, by the time the ad hit the streets, the price may have changed, or the property may have sold. Consumers were often frustrated as they would call on properties that were so often already sold. There was no way to change this as it was the downfall of print media.

When social media emerged, so did an easier way to adjust the message or price at a moment notice and the best part was that as soon as the ad was posted, the message was also immediately received. A new era was born, and advertising forever changed. As the markets changed and we entered the high paced market in 2011 to 2018, buyers were able to see a listing soon as it hit the market and compete with other buyers if they so chose. Although it gave many people equal opportunity to compete, it was probably also a big catalyst to accelerating the real estate market and its prices. Prior to this it was like a bottle neck in relation to effective marketing and getting the message out, but now the flood gate was open.

Todays world has billions of people connected to and using social media every day. Cell phones are built around the concept of having users unable to let go of their devices for a minute. It is not unusual to see people wandering the street oblivious to others or traffic while they scan ads, posts, anything and everything in a frantic compulsion to stay connected. These platforms make billions of dollars by addicting users and getting them to click on ads.

It has just been announced that the Wikipedia co-founder Jimmy Wales is launching a social media website called “WT: Social”. The platform aims to compete with Facebook and Twitter, except instead of funding it through ads, Wales is taking a page from the Wikipedia playbook and financing it through user donations which is an interesting concept.

As I said at the beginning, some of the changes are not as positive and one aspect I believe is that people don’t interact face to face as much anymore. I personally prefer to sit down with someone that I do business with or want to connect with to have a chat face to face. I think you get more out of those conversations and there is a broader understanding that comes out of it. As well, face to face conversations rarely run the risk of being misinterpreted which can happen easily with social media. I find it a little sad to see people out for lunch or dinner with their phones obsessively in hand and not talking to each other, checking texts and Facebook.

The youngest children are often the most vulnerable and it appears that iPads and cell phones with games on them tend to serve as electronic babysitters for some which is unfortunate as those early formative years are so important as to what is ingrained in the mind and the habits formed as a result.

My wife and I have the 3 grandkids over for sleepovers regularly. Initially they always wanted to watch TV or cartoons all the time and it was a battle to get them to understand that they were here to visit with Grandma and Grampa which would entail playing and long walks. We did agree, as all 3 sleep in the theatre room, that they would get to watch one cartoon as they settled into the big blow up bed. It wasn’t long before they forgot about the TV and wanted to go for walks!!!

Bottom line is that all this new technology really is amazing if you keep it under control and don’t let it rule your life. The key here, in my opinion is don’t forget the value of the good old chat over a coffee or lunch. Those conversations my friends are PRICELESS!!!!!!

Have an awesome weekend 😊

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