I was browsing a Linked In group I'm part of and musing at the lack of engagement on some, what I thought were, quite interesting topics. Scrolling down the page I noticed a post from someone with a title that loosely said "Buy Stuff From Me". I see this kind of thing a lot and I'm concerned people are just not getting social media.
To some people social media platforms represent an opportunity to engage, share, learn and expand your circle of friends and contacts. To others it's just another tool to sell, sell, sell... In my view the sellers are barking up the wrong tree and should stick to other forms of interruption marketing. With social media the clues in the name, you need to be sociable which means you need to engage with people not talk at them.
In my view this approach should be intuitive, however the idea of engaging fills some people with dread. One successful business person told be recently they don't use social platforms such as facebook etc because of a fear someone might say something bad about them. I'm afraid if people want to be disparaging they'll do it whether you're engaging with them or not!
There seems to be a polarised view of social media and I know as many people who love twitter/facebook etc as hate it, and refuse to join in. That's fine, like any form of networking some people enjoy it, to others it's a chore.
When presenting social media training sessions I often advise those who are reluctant or sceptical to take a look at a really established form of social media, forums. There are some great business forums in the UK and for me they present the ideal training ground for honing your on-line interaction skills. Who knows, by helping others you might eh.....find some new clients.