Social media: the beginning of a beautiful friendship

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Uncle.  I have been a sceptic about the power of social media.  I’ve never quite believed that it was anything other than a time suck.  But today, I have changed my mind. 

Recently a former colleague, with whom I used to attend high school, and later ended up working with in a large multi-national consumer package goods firm, contacted me via Linked in.

He asked me to introduce him to someone with whom I attended business school.  They’re both big-wig VPs in the world, and there might be an opportunity for their respective companies to work together.  Bingo. At least they have the beginning of a beautiful friendship.

I wasn’t really expecting that there was anything in it for me.  After all, the networking game is about building karma points.  That is, if you add value for enough people over time, eventually someone will step up and help you when you need it. 

This time, one of the players offered to come speak to my marketing class, without me even having to ask! Repayment in full, plus some. 

Social media can be effective, or it can be a waste of time. It’s only useful if you use it effectively.  So the moral of the story is to pick your media, learn how to use it, and start developing relationships. But remember, all social media is about the exchange. So you’ve got to provide something of value to get something of value.  Just like real world networking, if you take too much and don’t give enough, you’ll just get kicked out of the network.


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