Let me tell you my story with social media.
It can be a quite a rollercoaster ride, but it’s ultimately here to help you. It’s here to help you go about your day, to make you feel connected with the world, to help you learn, to help you think. Essentially, it’s here to haunt you and take over your life. But in all seriousness, it’s quite funny how our world has evolved and been shaped so heavily by social media and digital business. I’ve learned that I can’t even sleep at night without my phone being an arms length away. I wake up every morning as my alarm goes off and think to myself, hmm what’s new today? On the more difficult days to get out of bed, I check Facebook or Snapchat to see what people were up to the previous night, to keep my eyes open a little longer so I don’t fall back asleep. The backlight from your phone somehow plays into your eyes and you become more awake being connected with the world. Just this thought and practice every morning is so interesting and exemplifies how much our world has been shaped by social media.
My initial thoughts on the course were definitely very different. I didn’t expect to be using Twitter or WordPress to voice my opinions or be connected 24/7. But at the same time, I am grateful that I don’t use these platforms on a regular basis. Yes, I have used both at a point in my life, but Facebook and Snapchat have now dominated those realms. I am excited to learn how to use these useful tools potentially to enhance my career. I would definitely not consider myself to be a social media guru of any sort and I hope to be able to become even half the enthusiast that professor Kane exemplifies.
Just in general, I really don’t understand the world’s obsession with social media. Maybe it’s psychological, where people always want to be connected and plugged in. Maybe people don’t want to feel as lonely, but it’s ironic because they are just talking to a machine. It reminds me of the movie Her, where people are able to develop relationships with machines. It’s amazing what machines can do now with AI. But it’s inevitable at this point. It’s weaseled its way into every facet of our lives. The face that we all have iPhones with apps that can do anything for us at the press of a button is absolutely mind-blowing if you really think about it. But then again, it really is so normal. We’ve grown to understand this idea and have opened our imaginations to where technology can take us.
Social media along with digital business is one of the many dimensions that intrigues me the most. At this point, I keep asking myself, “what can’t social media do?” Rather than “what can social media do?” For example, Disney essentially connecting their entire park through a platform using social media and digital business, called their MagicBands. It makes your whole experience better by creating an all in one device that you can use to purchase items, enter your hotel, and even get Fastpass tickets. Learning about topics like these really intrigue me, to understand that everyone is connected using their data analytics platform, and it is only improving the customer experience as a whole. I wouldn’t be surprised if it tracked the foot traffic of every Disney enthusiast in the park to see which lines are busier than others. And having all of this data is so crucial for making strategic decisions throughout the entire company.Although social media and digital business can seem so wonderful with no problems, it can be very intimidating and cutthroat at the same time. Social media has so much power and potential to make or break a company. It’s amazing how one post or review can destroy a business or brand image. Honestly, what’s more scary is the fact that the information can be known instantly, especially if it goes viral. Companies will try to exploit this, writing fake reviews for a potential “15 minutes of fame.” I guess it would make sense if you needed to risk for a high reward, because as they say, “any publicity is good publicity.” For example, the NRA tweeted “Good morning, shooters. Happy Friday! Weekend plans?” right after the Aurora, Colorado shootings. This was a huge backlash as the twitter community bombarded the NRA with hateful tweets and comments. Although the NRA did insensitively post this, they became the talk of the hour and received a lot more foot traffic across the board.
I understand the power and importance of social media in today’s business world, as I’ve portrayed above. The world is becoming increasingly digital, to the point firms are creating divisions within their practices called “digital.” Where “digital is the new sexy.” In this course, I hope to be able to learn how to leverage these opportunities in business. Especially as a senior, and with the real world right around the corner, I have found it to be so important to be connected with social media. It has found its way into every business line and has essentially become a requirement regardless of what you do. I am definitely excited to hear from business professionals and learn from them how we can become better social media users in the business world.