When I started, I knew what my big idea was.
I believed that social media was a profoundly important technology that could finally give us the tools we needed to connect across time and geography, to break down barriers in society, to be more vulnerable and connected, and to empower customer and employees in a capitalist society.
And my purpose was clear: I was going to help shape where it was going.
That was what helped me keep moving forward: the big idea.
Social Media Lost Its Luster.
Despite my high hopes, along the way, that idea lost its luster, for a variety of reasons.
Giving the “little guy” a voice, was largely replaced with popularity contests and celebrity culture. Also, a lot of the “little guys” turned out to be terrible people.
Vulnerability and real connection, was largely shut down with trolls and automation.
Authenticity and originality got lost amidst the copycats and frauds.
Beyond that, Social Media became a box to check on a to-do list, rather than an opportunity to realize.
And I’ve just grown tired of people ignoring the big opportunity.
As I look back on the past decade, I realize that, realistically, the only thing I can claim for sure is that I’ve developed a deep understanding of the mechanics for how social media, content marketing, and influencer marketing work in business. I’ve also developed a strong sense of smell for bullshit.
And while I’ve passed along information to countless people through my blogs, podcasts, and public speaking engagements, I don’t know how much I’ve been able to shape how social media has developed. It seems to me that the dream of shaping how this technology shaped our lives was far beyond my control and influence.
But…On The Bright Side.
I’ve grown exceptionally good at the strategic and tactical use of social media in business. I comb through analytics data, identify areas of opportunity, and simplify complex topics into a straightforward plan for my clients.
- I know what it takes for a business to succeed on social media, and where it is wasting its money.
- I understand how social advertising works to a degree that puts me in the upper echelon of social media marketers.
But…even though I’m still damn good at it, I’m not particularly passionate about it anymore…not like I was.
I think the big issue is that, for too long, I put my head down, worked hard for my clients, and hadn’t stopped to think about why I was doing what I was doing.
Now, I’m searching for passion once again. I’m still interested in social media but I need a hard reset on that before I can get excited about it again. I need to rediscover the part that got me excited about it, the thing that caused nearly everyone to use the word passionate when describing me.
Beyond that, I’ve grown exceptionally interested in leadership and company culture. I’m not sure I’m ready yet to fully commit to those topics as central themes of my content or my career, but it’s something I am spending more time thinking about. I’ve also grown quite fond of sales.
There’s a through-line here that I want to uncover. So, I’m in search of my big idea.
I’ll keep you posted on where this search takes me.