My friend, and former client, photographer Michael Kohn, who is a very bright guy, posted an interesting quote from Malcom Gladwell in which he was referencing Facebook creator Mark Zuckerberg.
“Connection is the goal. The quality of that connection, the quality of the information that passes through it, the quality of the relationship that connection permits—none of this is important. That a lot of social networking software explicitly encourages people to make weak, superficial connections with each other and that this might not be an entirely positive thing, seem to never have occurred to him.”
Everybody figures this out in their own time and in their own way.
The digital marketing community, represented by the big sites like Facebook, Instagram, Pinterest, LinkedIn etc.. are like whales swimming around with their mouths open sucking up anything that vaguely looks like food, referred to generally as plankton.
This plankton is the content that people like you and I are happy to provide. But more than that, it is also us as people.
These whales have conditioned us to look at this process of being food for them as something that will benefit us over time. They never actually say how long that is. And we believe them, and why not? We have no frame of reference for any of this because it is new in our experience.
The leaders of these digital entities become gurus because they control their own media flow, reach, direction, intensity and message.
I call it the big con. And we’re all marks in it. A lot of people don’t take it seriously, but they have us all completely profiled and are constantly selling our information to people who, in turn, want to sell us stuff.
But this only works as long as we’re here providing food. It’s a symbiotic relationship between us (the plankton) and the whales of social media.
We need them for amusement and the promise of connection to other plankton. They need us for content and profile data.
At the end of the day, however it’s a hell of a lot more profitable for the whales .
The way you break the pattern is by leaving. But the whales have a secret weapon.
Our addiction and our need for interaction with each other, even if it just the tiny screams of plankton echoing in the blue ocean of bubbly goo.
This insight is not intended to persuade everyone to up and leave. Instead, it underscores the need to deepen our relationships with each other here inside this particular whale.
Don’t let anyone dictate rules of behavior to you here. Be yourself. Reveal yourself. Solicit information and insight from others. Deepen your relationships to the point where they become beneficial to you instead of just interesting.
We are only using about 20% of our capability here. Up the percentage and see if you can’t put your participation here to better use for you and the people you connect with.
I have done this several times. And, glorioski, it works.
I am what’s known, in today’s world, as a Communications Navigator. Through my own core skills as a strategist, writer & art director and with the help of a select group of insanely talented associates, I work with primarily B to B clients, large and small to create hard working communications in whatever sector of the marketing universe their strategy dictates the need to travel through. I am also a mentor, blog post editor and a pretty decent photographer.
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Copyright © 2016 by Jim Murray
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