Winking in the dark – how to get noticed in social media

This article was posted on Thursday, July 31st, 2014

You’re at a party, the music is pumping, the dance floor is rocking, the guys / gals are looking fine, you’re confident and ready to cross the great divide and engage in intellectual, meaningful dialogue with the hottest, happening crowd in the place; hoping to make lifelong friends and maybe more.

But as you stand plastered to the wall, you see connections being made around you; people requesting, accepting, sharing, engaging and commenting. You also notice that although you can see them, they don’t seem to see you. Why? You’re put together; designed to attract, you’ve got a mindful of useful information to share, you can be funny and you want nothing in return, just an opportunity to introduce yourself.

You tap shoulders, ask people to dance, offer to buy drinks, the come-on lines roll off your tongue; compliments, jokes, invitations…. why don’t they see you, why don’t they hear you?

Social media can make you feel like the desperate loser trying to infiltrate the in-crowd at a party; you feel like a rubber ball hitting a brick wall; each time getting bounced back further than you were before.

How do you get friends, fans, followers; how do you get people to like you? Perhaps the answer lies in the analogy presented earlier. What advice would you give your teenage son or sister, how would you suggest he or she create a social profile? My advice would be:

  • To not measure yourself against the success of others; set your own goals.
  • Be yourself; don’t mimic someone else because they are popular.
  • It’s OK to be different; it makes you more interesting.
  • Back yourself; confidence is sexy.
  • Don’t go to the parties everyone is going to; if it’s not your scene move on to someplace that is.
  • Don’t come on too strong or too desperate; nobody likes a brag or a loser.
  • Listen; it is a simple tactic that works every time.
  • Look after the friends you have.
  • Manage your reputation; don’t throw your name away.

We have names for people who like, share and connect with everyone and anyone indiscriminately don’t we? Whether you are online or in line to get into the hottest club in town, the same social etiquette applies. Because behind the likes and the retweets are people not profiles.

So when the outfit you picked seems to serve as camouflage, step outside, take a deep breath,  look around you and ask yourself ‘Who are these people?’

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