I’ve participated in social media since 2009, when I created most of my online accounts. I had doubts about the whole social media movement in 2016 when I pared down my online activity, leaving only Twitter and LinkedIn as semi-active accounts. I’m again reconsidering the value of my participation as the richest man-child in the world is driving the Twitter clown car off the cliff.
Twitter has been almost my only source of industry and world news, and surprisingly helpful during attending live conferences (which I haven’t done in three years due to a global pandemic). LinkedIn serves as a valuable business directory and a two-way communication tool for work. Other than that, I don’t have other online social accounts. Instead, I use video calls, one-to-one messaging, and email to stay in touch with friends and acquaintances, work or private.
My biggest hurdle to using social media more is the lack of desire, and often time, to regularly consume and produce short-form (visual) content that social media prefers, and often demands. I really tried on several occasions over the past thirteen years, but I never managed to persist. On the other hand, I thoroughly enjoy deep thinking and creating thoughtful and informative long-form written content; I usually spend all my scarce free time on those. The engagement from people on social media on that form is so minimal that I get better responses if I message it to seven people I know are interested than if I share it with hundreds and thousands of people who have followed me over the years.
The tricky part is that I also get consistent feedback that my writing is helpful to some people, primarily for professional development. They tell me that they come back to my writing years later, either for themselves or to send to others who are on the same journey. I love writing for myself, but I would also like to share my writing with people who derive some value from it. The question is, how do I connect with those few without going through the awkward dance of social media, or at least minimize it?