Social media, me and the family / #SNHUMK555

February 3, 2013

Social Media Marketing

The idea of this blog was to keep family, friends and whoever finds its way to my blog updated on my adventures. It is easy to say: if I would not have been interested in utilizing social media to stay connected with the world I would not have come up with a blog. I also always thought I am advanced in utilizing Facebook, LinkedIn or the European (mainly Germany and Austria) version XING but since I started my studies to achieve an MBA I learned my lesson every day. Especially the course Social Media Marketing and all people involved inspire me and raise interest to further dig into the world of social media. I have to admit compared to my fellow peers I definitely have limited knowledge about the world of social media and how effective it can be, not only for private matter but also for business purpose.

What do Facebook, LinkedIn, XING or Twitter have in common? They all connect people, share information and engage people to share their experience that others rely on and profit from. While I like to share my adventures and also to let people participate in my life I still try to convince some family members to become part of the social media crowd. It is so much easier to spread news over Facebook or Twitter than giving every single person a call. Of course the intimate and customized relationship one has over the phone is still of high importance but again just saying hello to everyone or sharing a photo of a special moment with one’s network is unique.

As part of the studies I came across Google+. At the beginning my reaction only was: oh no, not another social network to deal with. Thanks to Hootsuite, a social media dashboard enabling to deal with multiple networks at a time, I learned I would be able to observe and keep track of all networks I am registered at. Unfortunately XING, from a general perspective offers the same applications as LinkedIn, cannot be utilized over Hootsuite. LinkedIn and XING are both business networking tools. Whether one is looking for a business contact to exchange information or a headhunter searching for best candidate-company-job match both platforms enable the user to find best match. The only negative of both networks is that they are not linked to each other. In an international work environment one will be linked to LinkedIn but many German-speaking business people only utilize XING. Over the years both networks have developed a lot, especially XING. Years ago one “only” could email but these days more interaction is possible thanks to Facebook, posting a status or comment to start communication with others.

But back to Facebook and Google+. Facebook definitely has the first mover advantage and therefore many people rely more on Facebook than Google+, still. I am sure I haven’t figured all option and possibilities one has with Facebook but same as Google+ one can share comments, status, photos, and embedded video with different groups one is connected with. While Facebook friends, family, personal settings are the groups one can share information with Google+ found another definition: circles. People allocated to circles also can be defined in different groups. What separates Google+ from Facebook is the fact that the Google+ appearance feels cleaner and more intuitive while Facebook requires little training to get used to and especially have the right settings in order not to share one’s “underwear” with the rest of the world. For private purposes Facebook seems to be the application to use as for others without permission they can not become “part of the club”. Google+ is more open and overall it is more easy to manage one’s personal interests, groups and visibility to be found by others but again it also requires one to set one’s profile settings correctly to avoid abuse.

After writing this I feel saying to family member: hey look, don’t ask me what’s going on. Create a profile at Facebook or Google+. Wherever you feel most comfortable, define your privacy and group the people you want to be connected with and you will see how easy it is to stay in contact. If you then feel the need to just send a short message about things you are interested in or what you have experienced: with 140 characters you can share it with the world on Twitter. By using a hashtag you can even target a specific group of people you want to reach or – better – from whom you want to be found.

No matter which social media tool it keeps the world connected!

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7 Comments on “Social media, me and the family / #SNHUMK555”

  1. Michael W Says:

    I wish we lived closer to you but I always look forward to your blog updates. I read them immediately, even if I might not respond quickly. Wherever you land this Fall, I hope you’ll keep up your writing!

    Reply

  2. dpleacoff Says:

    I personally prefer Facebook over Google+. I think the fact that most of my friends have a Facebook page makes me use FB exclusively. I’ve never heard of XING, which is no surprise since I live in the States! But I’m curious to know if you could choose any platform to use in the States, which you use XING over Facebook or Google +?

    Reply

  3. Anonymous Says:

    I have not used Hootsuite, but after opening so many new profiles for this class I am thinking it might be a lot more convenient than posting to every single one! You are right that social media has made communicating with your friends and family. Now we can communicate with all of the people that we care about at the same time, rather than taking the time to call each one individually. I saw that you mentioned that Google + was a cleaner layout and easier to use, while Facebook took a little time to learn. Would you consider Google + a better site for businesses, and Facebook better for personal use?

    Reply

    • mykatjesworld Says:

      Depending on business one can consider Facebook and Google+ likewise. For instance, in art & design I would consider using both accounts as with both tools the layout can vary which is helpful to target different customers. For business purpose in general, I think Google+ is much better as the appearance also looks more professional and one’s eye is not disturbed by all these ads like on Facebook. For personal use Facebook is a great tool but ask me in a couple of weeks again when I am more familiar with Google+…maybe I’ll change my mind.

    • ianjhughes Says:

      Hootsuite certainly makes life easier and it has just recently added Google + integration! I would agree generally that Google+ is better suited for businesses and Facebook for personal. However, Google+ has several fixes it needs to make before it is truly useful. The recent integration of Google Places into Google+ Local is a step in the right direction. This transition will allow you to manage your business listing on Google through your Google+ business page and, conceivably help search rankings. But the transition has not been smooth. We have had issues at my work with verifying our locations – we’re currently waiting for a PIN mailer to verify one location and in the meantime we’ve lost the couple of positive reviews we had. Despite how convincing Chris Brogan’s argument is in our text, I think mass migration to Google+ is still a little ways off. Bugs need to be fixed and gaps need to be filled, but it will happen

  4. Dirk Pampel Says:

    na, stress in der Familiy ;-)))

    Waren am Wochenende in Paris – war sehr schn im Winter bei klarem Wetter und wenigen Touristen :-)

    Tanja und Baby geht es sehr gut – wie sieht es bei Euch aus? – Wste war super, wie ich gelesen habe!

    Lieber Gru aus Colonia

    Dirk

    Reply

    • mykatjesworld Says:

      Hehe…kein stress in der Familie. Es war die Aufgabe in Social Media mind. 2 SM tools zu vergleichen. Ich will ja nur den Rest meiner Familie animieren sich dort auch anzumelden, damit man nicht mehr die sogenannten “Schulterkucker” hat :-).
      Schoen, dass es Euch 3!!! gutgeht. :-) Liebste Gruesse, katjes

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