Social Media: Time Suck or Time Saver?

Opinions vary about the utility of social…utilities. It’s no secret that online social media can become an exasperating distraction for workers and students, not to mention the three hours I lose every time I start watching just one YouTube video and then, just one more, and then… Well, you get the idea. What’s all this activity costing users (and their employers)? Learnstuff.com has made some calculations, with special focus on Facebook, Twitter and  YouTube. Here’s the infographic:
Social Media At Work

For those of us who choose to use social media as a business networking and sales development strategy, these facts presume that no good purpose is served in the activity that is costing so much time and money. I’m not sure that’s the case, at least not every case. Rather than list the hypotheticals that run counter to the assumption that all social media use is killing productivity, let me point you to this fine summary article at Andy Beal’s Marketing Pilgrim. The explanation is on how to use social media to improve your reputation and step one is to choose the utility you use carefully. If the idle use cited by LearnStuff.com is really to be discouraged, perhaps the choice of Facebook, to pick on one example, as a networking and sales platform will not yield the results you desire.  The alternative is, of course, if the people you want to reach and engage with are on Facebook primarily, you may very well get results you want. Nothing substitutes for knowing your customers and meeting them where they choose to gather.

What are you doing to know your customers better?

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