In general, I'm not a big fan of "social media". Maybe I should say I haven't been a big fan. These are dominated by Facebook and Twitter. Second-tier companies are Google+, LinkedIn, Pinterest and a handful of others.
What I have come to understand - and appreciate - each of these is very different, and some actually have benefits for we preppers. I'm also trying to learn how to use these tools to expand my business to a larger market.
Facebook - The big dog on the block, and quite honestly, I don't get it. At its basic function, it is a, "Look at me!" website. From a prepper perspective, I really find little use. If you own a business, and that business has a national reach, Facebook may help you reach new customers. They're making tons of money on their ad revenues, so someone thinks the service has value. Right now, it's not me, though.
Twitter - I like it. A lot. I've been playing with it for a month or so now, and I'm blown away by the information I'm able to glean from all of these folks. It allows you to select feeds (you receive 'tweets' from other posters) that can be from a specific person, business or organization. Money, politics, guns, prepping - whatever. I have yet to type in a subject and not find dozens of potential sources.
And for breaking news, I've found nothing better. Most include a link to a full-blown article. I use it as my morning information source.
THAT is the one drawback of Twitter: Information overload. I've only got a couple of dozen folks I currently follow, and I regularly drop some and add new ones.
Google+ - I'm still trying to figure this out. Apparently, you can have an interest - say off-grid living - and find all kinds of groups and people that share your interest. Like Twitter, you can 'follow' different people or groups to help filter out all of the noise.
This looks to be very promising, but they're sure making it hard to figure out.
All others - They all seem way too focused. LinkedIn just seems like a big resume board. Perhaps it has utility if you're looking for a job. I dunno.
There are some Rules of Engagement you should follow -
Use an alias. Unless you're a public figure, there's little upside to having your real name and identity out there for all to see. If it does make sense to use your real name, also set up a "lurker" account that will allow you to visit sites and make posts anonymously. Remember: everything you ever say online will be there forever.
If you're a business, don't be pimping your wares 24/7. Provide information to selling something at a 20:1 ratio (twenty chunks of info for every 1 business pitch).
Use services to make your posts throughout the day. If all of your posts come out in a gush during a 1 hour period, no one is going to see what you've got to say. I use something called, Buffer. It lets you set up pre-set posting schedules, or very specific custom times. So far, I'm liking it.
While you're at it, why don't you click the Twitter 'follow' button on the upper left hand side of the page. I'm just sayin.....
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Copyright 2014 Bison Risk Management Associates. All rights reserved. Please note that in addition to owning Bison Risk Management, Chief Instructor is also a partner in a precious metals business. You are encouraged to repost this information so long as it is credited to Bison Risk Management Associates. www.BisonRMA.com