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«Return to Blog List Social media may be harmful to your personal well-being (but it can still be good for your business)

Pie chart showing percentage of business social media focused on businessenlarge

There are several studies and articles over the last few years (google: ‘facebook makes us sad’) pointing to social media decreasing our happiness and sense of well-being. And it’s not just Facebook. Anyone who has spent time on Twitter knows it’s full of trolls and extremists waiting to pounce.

Rather than the once-promised platform for connection, many social media platforms have devolved into battlegrounds for people at political and social extremes. There is very little sense of ‘live and let live’ on social media, and getting caught in a social media crossfire is a real possibility for anyone who expresses even the most innocuous opinion. I pulled the plug on my Facebook account 7-8 years ago, when I realized it was of little value to my B2B business, and haven’t regretted it for a single moment.

Social Media can Still Help Your Business

And yet, there is still a business case for social media playing a role in your marketing, if you own a business or manage a non-profit. Despite its challenges, social media still helps people find your business, and get to your website where your value proposition is clear (hopefully).

My rule of thumb about which platforms to use:

  • if your business is B2C, you need active Facebook and Twitter accounts, maybe LinkedIn if your business can be categorized as ‘professional services’
  • if B2B, you need Twitter and LinkedIn accounts.

Depending on the nature of your business and markets, whether B2B or B2C, there may be other social media that would be helpful (Pinterest, Instagram, Snapchat, etc).

Please Tweet Responsibly

But here’s the important thing: your business social media persona has to be 100% focused on your business and market and 0% on your personal political or social points of view. If you want to wade into that muddy water with the dangerous undertow, do it using a separate account that’s unconnected with your business brand.

I confess I’ve not always followed that rule, which also necessitates the confession that the pie chart at the top of this post is primarily for my own use. But feel free to download it to use as a reference if you think it will help you remember.

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