This can be pretty long but you may read it :)
Around 2005, my dad took me to an internet cafe and told the guy who was his friend’s son, “Please teach him Internet.”
That must have been my first encounter with Internet where he helped me open my first Yahoo! account.
Internet and computer still seemed to be alien to me all along.
In 2008 after one of the YES!+ Program I was asked by a participant that are you on Facebook? I had this look of “What’s that?!?”
At that time, I did not own a working computer or laptop or internet connection so never bothered to figure it out.
By the end of 2008 I had a decent laptop and by start of 2009 I had a broadband connection and the rest has been history. I just started exploring the internet.
It never began with writing or becoming comfortable at Social media. It began with a simple idea to share. And then everything that enabled to make it happen was understood. What language to use, what choice of words to use so as to not hurt someone or put someone down. Everything the internet and the netizens continue to educate.
In 2009, volunteering with the amazing bunch of youth and young at heart Art of Living teachers and volunteers, I figured so much is done but not projected out. Having no clue where to begin. I began with whatever I could gather eyes on. Taking pictures to writing announcement to using it to promote future courses to allow people to connect to this chapter of the organization.
I realized just posting is not enough so the process of networking people across social media began. I connected to as many people who appreciate what that profile would post. So that more and more people read and spread that further!
The same hunt went across Twitter.
Instagram wasn’t the hot cake then so it never began.
It did not take much time. I would figure out what is new that Gurudev is writing, what the organization is doing and would put them on across the profile. Few Hits and lots of misses. A few things here and there and I could see engagement picking up. Mind you, all the while there was least of monitoring from the core team of teachers. It was hard work but it was exciting. With just Picasa and Paint, the pictures could get a face lift :p but yes that worked.
This was a test ground for me to find how people appreciated what was put across. To figure out that some long form posts did not work or that 200 photos albums was never seen or that not every friend request has to be honored with acceptance :p
Similar such feedback was visible, available but never told by anyone, rather understood and necessary steps taken.
One of my experiment was to write down whatever any Swami or Rishi ji or a more known Art of Living teacher spoke of at local events near me and could be useful if heard by all. One precaution I tried to apply was to mention if it was a direct statement or a understood statement. It was a hit most of the times. At one instance, I shared a summary of 13th May Satsang and a portion of it went rounds in many local chapters in India. It feels good how you can contribute just by writing and sharing and it can reach everywhere!
Cut to 2013 and I was asked to see if I can contribute something to the social media space of VDS. This was a tough task because here it represented the organization which looks specifically after the planning and execution of the pujas and homas and all the rituals. One has to be extremely careful because the audience is wary of how language is used.
Here along with amazing friends we could execute some of the campaigns. I had some learning in executing these. Shiv Sutras via whatsapp groups was first of its kind. Executing it for 2014 and 2015 was a tough task considering the nature of Whatsapp groups. But nevertheless it worked out.
It might seem easy but in the background a lot goes on to it. Try designing a poster and the first question is where to begin and what to put. Try writing and then read it at least 5 times to find it doesn’t have any spelling mistake and that it is not misleading. Then so much content can come in which for you may appear awesome but on posting you won’t find any satisfactory engagement at all :(
In social media everything counts as a feedback.
So from criticism to bouquets everything can help you to decide what works and needs to be recreated and what fails to deliver.
The whole process takes a lot of coordination, a lot of effort and even then it may not bring in the required results. It takes a lot of patience to listen to what is not working and figure a way out. Sometimes you don’t know what will work or not. It’s totally a game. No limits to creativity. Use what works. Try and test.
For each field there is a different way to express themselves and to reach out. To provide value to people.
Over the past years watching, reading and at times executing in minute parts of many such social media & growth initiatives, now I am looking forward to read some of your own.
Yell and tell.
How are you handling your social media for whatever you are trying to promote?
Have you thought about it?
Have you started it ?
Have you stopped it? Why what happened?
Are you thinking to use it to help your objective?
What’s going on?
I would like to listen to my friends out here and maybe contribute to some ideas that *might* help you and looking forward to learn a lot too :)
All small to mid sized businesses to individuals who are trying out new things and want to test it’s response in social media. How are you faring in terms of idea to execution? Your strengths? Your fear?
I am here to listen to my friend list and figure out what worked out for you and what did not and will try to find a solution and help you if possible :)
Pour in your comments and thoughts :)
#HowCanIHelpYou ? :)