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Social Networking is Hard Work – Sarah’s Social Media Experiment

So, my social media experiment was probably the most pathetic experiment ever conducted. (See part one here: http://www.sitevisibility.co.uk/blog/?p=278) My plan was to throw myself into all things social media for the whole of April and then write about it in May. However, as you can see I am only just getting around to writing about it now, not because I’ve been so submerged that I haven’t had time to write, but more because I kept finding something more interesting to do and suddenly over two months had gone by and I hadn’t done a thing.

Anyway, I did try…a little, but mostly found the experiment very frustrating.

Ice Tea Extreme

The first thing that I did was to create a Twitter account. Not as easy as it should have been and I have to confess I did have to ask for help. But I was assured that everyone found Twitter confusing so I felt a little better. Once I had my account setup I wasn’t sure what to do.  I tried to find my friend but it seems that if you want to follow someone you have to know their username which I thought was a little annoying.

The next day I went to log into my twitter account and couldn’t get in. Great start. So I clicked ‘forgot my password’ but never received a password. So then I emailed the help email and a few hrs later I got an email saying that my problem had been fixed followed by an email saying that the ticket had been closed. Not hugely helpful. So I emailed again and a few days later finally got a reply saying that my password had been reset. But I still can’t log in and now sent another email but it say that the ticket had been closed and to submit a new one. I give up.

I’ve used Facebook a little bit but found that I’d log on and then didn’t know what to do.  How do people spend hours on it? What are they doing? I changed my status to ‘doing a social media experiment – please read my blog post’. I think 2 people read it and neither commented.

One thing I did get a bit excited about was the new ‘Google Location’ app from Google. My husband sent me an email inviting me to join Google Location – I’ve just got a new phone and I can run the app from that. It was really easy to set up and within about ten minutes I could see where he was on a map and it’s actually pretty accurate. If you don’t have a phone then you have to add your postcode and it shows where you are, but if you have a phone and you run it constantly (which would probably cost a fortune) then your friends and family (and anyone you invite) can actually see where you are and where’re going.

“How cool is this?” he said. “Now go for a walk….” So I walked home with the application turned on and my husband watched on his computer at work and could see where I was and when I got home. After the initial excitement wore off I suddenly realised what he’d just done…..he’d tricked me into installing a tracking device on my phone. And conveniently his phone doesn’t support it so he can see my every move but when he calls up and tells me ‘sorry, I have to work late tonight’ and then promptly goes to the pub I’m none the wiser…

So – I think we can consider my experiment a failure, although, let’s be honest, I didn’t really give it my all.

However, I am slowly beginning to realise that my lack of ‘social medianess’ is more due to laziness than lack of interest because I am curious about what is happening and what is going on, I just don’t want to find it out for myself.

I get that there are lots of exciting things happening that are going to revolutionise the way we do many many things, some of which I actually might get involved in in the future. I guess I’m just happy to wait and let everyone else experiment with all these new fads and then I’ll join in later on….

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8 Comments
  • Jennie on June 23, 2009

    Lame effort Sarah!! But the tracking device was hilarious… matt needs a new phone ;-)

  • Jennie on June 23, 2009

    Lame effort Sarah!! But the tracking device was hilarious… matt needs a new phone ;-)

  • Dweezil on June 24, 2009

    oh dear EPIC FAIL Sarah! ha ha
    Social media is currently helping the oppressed people pf Iran have a voice (particularly Twitter) outside Iran, and when China banned Hotmail, Facebook et all to stop the Chinese learning about the 20th anniversary of Tiannemen Square it was again Twitter that saved the day!
    I have helped to raise over £20,000 purely on Facebook and Twitter and one website for the NSPCC, and at the same time raised awareness and educated people about child protection issues in the UK, so it definitely works for me!
    but you are right- to be effective it does require effort and ongoing input as the constantly changing face of social media and those involved in it, requires constant interaction else you or your brand gets left behind.

  • Dweezil on June 24, 2009

    oh dear EPIC FAIL Sarah! ha ha
    Social media is currently helping the oppressed people pf Iran have a voice (particularly Twitter) outside Iran, and when China banned Hotmail, Facebook et all to stop the Chinese learning about the 20th anniversary of Tiannemen Square it was again Twitter that saved the day!
    I have helped to raise over £20,000 purely on Facebook and Twitter and one website for the NSPCC, and at the same time raised awareness and educated people about child protection issues in the UK, so it definitely works for me!
    but you are right- to be effective it does require effort and ongoing input as the constantly changing face of social media and those involved in it, requires constant interaction else you or your brand gets left behind.

  • Jeff on June 24, 2009

    lol. I thought you were the savvy one. Glad I’m not alone.

  • Jeff on June 24, 2009

    lol. I thought you were the savvy one. Glad I’m not alone.

  • Sarah on June 24, 2009

    You make a good point Dweezil. And if social media gives people a voice who otherwise wouldn’t be heard then it’s worth it a thousand times. Thinking about it, I have raised money for charity using Just Giving and it definitely made it much easier than going round collecting cash from people. I’m probably using some aspect of social media without even thinking about it a lot of the time.

  • Sarah on June 24, 2009

    You make a good point Dweezil. And if social media gives people a voice who otherwise wouldn’t be heard then it’s worth it a thousand times. Thinking about it, I have raised money for charity using Just Giving and it definitely made it much easier than going round collecting cash from people. I’m probably using some aspect of social media without even thinking about it a lot of the time.

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