Geeks and cliques

Occasionally I find myself questioning the value of the networks which I have become a part of in social media spaces, particularly Twitter.

It all feels very insular. Outside of these networks, does anyone know or care about all the little waves of interest that rise and fall in our dashboards on a daily basis.

There’s a lot of talking. A lot of discussion about what we find cool, what we’d like to do and how cool social media is. Take a step back though, and look again. You’ll see that not that much is actually happening.

The conversations are great and I’ve developed some new friendships. But why haven’t we changed the world yet? This is supposed to be the tool which brings us together, makes us stronger and allows us to forge a new tomorrow.

Blessed are the geeks.

And what of the businesses that we have tempted into our rockets? Where are the ones whose trajectory has been shifted noticeably upwards with the addition of a few tweets and a Facebook page?

So, is social media cliquey? Yes, it most certainly is. And by focussing inwards in these cliques, everything that we see is magnified disproportionately.

But is social media diminished by this?

No, I don’t think it is. Smart businesses are harnessing these cliques to bolster their brand.

It’s just business though. It’s not the paradigm shift it sometimes seems to those of us who have immersed ourselves in social media.

If we’re to use it successfully it needs to be approached as a business function. Not a magic bullet.

Put it in your business plan. Don’t make it your reason for being.