Wednesday, January 29, 2014

Social Media -- The Bad "Stalkers" and the Good "Stalkers"

A friend of mine has been dealing with some social media stalker nonsense, which has provoked some recent thought on the issue. First, for would-be stalkers I want like to share: it's not a good idea to mess with someone's social media page(s). Many people use social media to build their reputations and attract business and network. I certainly use social media in this respect, as a business tool. My friend also uses it for those reasons, too. So when someone starts hacking and messing with what is a business tool, he or she impedes the flow of business. Changing someone's likes to something that would ruin their reputations could also be construed as defamation of character, especially if the nonsense is harmful.

I had a hacker once change my likes to make it appear as though I was a Nazi, Racist, lesbian man-hater. The hacker also "un-friended" clients, which definitely hurts business. The allegation could easily have been leveled that she had defamed my character and materially hurt my business. In my friend's case, his stalker has been messing with his actual page and made it impossible to get back into his own site, which also impedes business flow and marketing capabilities. Once more a breach in business could easily be alleged and a lawsuit brought down not to mention harassment.

Now why does this matter in a positive way. Facebook "Watchers" (I'll call them that instead of "stalkers") who pay attention to what you post lead to business. In the case of my friend, I was especially annoyed because I couldn't send "connections" that would lead to business to his site. The first thing one of my prospective clients did was "Friend" me. All of my clients connect with me through Facebook and social media. Many prospective clients like to observe what I post on my Wall and sometimes interact with me.

The value is in relationship building. Prospective clients spend time getting to know me before they work with me. People work with people they like, and social media gives you the opportunity to let people get to know and understand you. It's really virtual relationship building. When I can't send prospective business over to my friend's page because of unscrupulous stalker behavior, he loses opportunities. So people watch your social media behavior, too. People are watching you for a reason. In other words social media is not a toy (not for business people) nor is a high school yearbook ... just saying! ;)

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