As director of digital communications and social media at the career site Monster, I read Cal Newport’s recent Preoccupations column, “Quit Social Media. Your Career May Depend on It,” with great interest. Mr. Newport argues that social media is harmful for careers because it is too much of a distraction and doesn’t provide a valuable return on investment professionally.
Before I dive into this, let’s get one thing straight:
You are not your social media followers.
You are not your likes on Facebook.
You are not your views on Snapchat.
You are all singing, all dancing….
Wait, this isn’t Fight Club.
But let’s be serious:
Your social media follower counts don’t actually matter that much.
Last week, my marketing team returned from HubSpot’s annual INBOUND conference where they not only got to see Anna Kendrick, Trevor Noah, and Alec Baldwin, but they also got to learn more about content marketing (equally exciting, I know).
And one of the major content marketing trends we’re paying close attention to is distribution and engagement in online algorithms — so, needless to say, my team spent a lot of time in sessions about improving content distribution and engagement. One speaker, Rachel Happe, discussed “constant content” and how just writing exceptional content alone won’t guarantee your audience will find it from all the other content out there.
Twitter has always been a place to get immediate customer support from brands. Many one-one-one interactions happen in the public eye though (which sometimes feels like a spectator sport watching someone demand help from a company). Understandably, brands will try and shift these conversations away from the public view and move the conversation into a DM, also known as a direct message. This also allows the customer to share more private information like flight numbers, email addresses, etc. So next time your flight is delayed or the wifi isn’t working, you can have a conversation with the airline in private, rather than going on a public rant.
I’m a millennial computer scientist who also writes books and runs a blog. Demographically speaking I should be a heavy social media user, but that is not the case. I’ve never had a social media account.
At the moment, this makes me an outlier, but I think many more people should follow my lead and quit these services. There are many issues with social media, from its corrosion of civic life to its cultural shallowness, but the argument I want to make here is more pragmatic: you should quit social media because it can hurt your career.
Parents have plenty of reasons to worry about what their kids do online.
Dangers seem to lurk in every corner of connected life, especially for children. Remember that federal regulation prohibits children under the age of 13 from joining most social networking sites. Even so, more than 20,000 kids try to sneak their way onto Facebook — with or without their parents’ help — every single day.