Pursuit of Social Media Happiness

Forbes Thought Of The Day

 Success is getting what you want, happiness is wanting what you get. ” — Dave Gardner

Social media is continuously evolving making it ever so complex. The quote above inspired me to attempt to simplify the complexity of social media. Here’s my pitch: whether its business or personal use, the “success” of social media is utilizing the tools and knowledge to outperform the competitor in shares, likes, the sort of statistics and measurements of social media platforms. Tools like the Hootsuite dashboard allow social media users to “get what they want” by tracking and testing the ins and outs of using social media. On the other hand, the “happiness” of social media is content side of things. Social media is a great platform for content creation. The mere interaction of the audience with your content brings the “happiness” to your business and/or personal self by creating trust, awareness, and authority. Positioning your social media usage to the right audience will ensure “what you get” is what you wanted…for others to promote and defend your brand for you. 

How I described the “success” and “happiness” of social media is like the Moz Beginners Guide to Social Media and their definition of the two kinds of data, quantitative and qualitative. The definition of quantitative data is like my definition of the “success” side of of social media. Examples according to Moz are: followers/fans, engagement such as comments/shares/likes, timing, and click-through-rate. We successfully get what we want with knowledge of how social media works. Timing is a huge one. Being able to post on social media at the optimal time for the highest level of audience exposure is very important for successful social media marketing. 

“Happiness” for social media is like Moz‘s definition of qualitative data. Qualitative data of social media are the influence, sentiment, and conversation driving metrics. Its less about the numbers and more about the human interaction. The influencers or promoters of your business or personal brand are hard to find. The sentiment, or rather the audience that loves and defends your brand is hard to get. However, with time and good use of social media, your business and you can experience “happiness” because what you get down the road is what you want..a brand powerhouse with a powerful social media following. 

Is there ever a time to not use social media?

I think the Applebee’s social media nightmare is an example of when not to use social media. I think Applebees not only misused social media, but overused it too. Their misuse came when they decided to post (lets disregard the fact that they posted at 3 am) on Facebook about what I think is an internal business affair. Yes, the employee made a public display by posting the receipt online, but Applebees should not have also gone online. Of course, their overuse and continued misuse of social media came when they posted repeatedly, responded to ordinary people, and their whole deleting and re-publishing of posts and comments. Applebees just kept digging their hole deeper and deeper. Yes, negative and hurtful comments are never necessary, but Applebees in a way stooped down to the negative level by responding and as long as they did. Once again, I really feel like the firing of their employee was 100% an internal affair and didn’t need to post a response on Facebook in the first place. I would’ve never posted about the controversy. Instead I would have dealt with the controversy within my business and solely with the parties involved. Although if I were too have posted a response on Facebook like they did, I would have posted it at a more appropriate time for starters. Positive or negative feedback I would have posted nothing else after the first post. Once Applebees did so, it was a point of no return and they spiraled down and further down. 

Can the ideas behind Facebook’s EdgeRank be good and bad?

I think Mark Cuban’s rant and the article by Business Week both shared insightful points. I see social media, specifically Facebook in this discussion, as a teeter totter with the human vs. the algorithm. In short, Cuban’s rant on EdgeRank can be summed up when he wrote,”we should know better than an algorithm what those who like us actually like.” He continued with what made me like his side more:

“From a brands perspective not having to try to fall within the parameters of the algorithm (Edgerank)  allows us to post fun things, tidbits, information, anything knowing that there is at least a chance those who have a connection with us can see it and knowing that we won’t reduce our chances of the algorithm showing our post” – Mark Cuban 

This relates to what I was saying at the beginning of this post. It relates to difference between “success” and “happiness.” In this light, the “success” is “to fall within the parameters of the algorithm” whereas “happiness” is “to post fun things, tidbits, information, anything knowing that there is at least a chance.” Having said that social media is never one-sided, so we need knowledge of both the human (the target audience) and any algorithms out there. 




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