If you read my last post (Linking…out) you might be surprised with this next statement: I might (just might) use LinkedIn to meet my professional and business goals. Yikes…before you think I’m a complete traitor to my last post, the “might” is only with a few caveats in place:
- I’ll need to feel solid within my career, ready to network
- I’ll need to do some more research on how to protect myself from identity theft
- I’ll have to sign up using my real name so I can actually do some networking (lol).
Why the change of heart? It came when I was trying to wrap my head around how to do the LinkedIn assignment “Connect and interact with at least 3 other people in your professional area.” I watched the connections other classmates were making (when using their real names) and I was impressed with the groups they found. It made me realize that part of my “yuck” feeling about LinkedIn was that I was not feeling confident reaching out to other writers…because I don’t consider myself a writer…yet. When I do cross that threshold into writer-dom, LinkedIn could be a valuable resource…maybe. So, in the meantime, I did a test run by reaching out to five of my classmates who have identified themselves as writers (even if they only loosely mentioned it in their inital class intro…they got an email from me – poor souls). It might only be a small step…but at least it was a step.
And what about Facebook? Well…that one, I’m not so sure of. Yes, this is influenced by the fact that I just spent the last half hour taking screen shots of each of my Facebook pages to be able to prove that I did all the module activities (I have!)..in case my account is trashed by Facebook authorities (they’re still watching me – had to type in one of those swirly anti-spam words to unlock my “temporarily locked account”). Yes, I will continue to use my personal Facebook account to share pictures (tame pictures!) and stay in touch with family and friends (my definition of “friends”, not Facebook’s). But will I use it professionally? Maybe. If I become an established writer, I may set up a Facebook Page to make my presence known and connect with other writing Facebook groups. And if I do set one up? Three more caveats (have I told you my favorite number is 3?):
- I’ll make darn sure that I follow Kabani’s advice and back up my Facebook page through something like Socialsafe. Half hour doing screen shots is enough of a lesson to know that I don’t want to give Facebook control over whether my Facebook page lives or dies.
- I’ll continue to think twice about any information I put on Facebook, including who/what I “Like”, always aware that “Big Brother” is watching (and using) any information I decide to share.
- I’ll never (ever) “hyper-target” anyone or use any ill-gotten profile information to target unsuspecting Facebook-ees. Even if they’ve freely given away too much information about themselves, I won’t use it to market myself. Never, ever (ever!)
So, the answer to the blog title “Will I use Facebook and LinkedIn?” is an unequivocal, resounding…maybe.
How’s that for planting my butt firmly on the middle of the fence! 🙂