Facebook-aholics Anonymous: My Conversion To The Dark Side
Want to eat away at your spare time? Cut your work productivity in half? Cultivate every gossipy tendency you’ve ever had? People worldwide can’t wait to sign up thanks to Mark Zuckerberg’s creation, Facebook.com. Over the last six years what began as a small meet and greet website for Harvard yuppies has morphed into a global social networking phenomenon. Facebook.com has catalyzed the formation of a generation of wall-posting, status-updating cyber-zombies whose offspring will likely tweet from the womb. And I love it! Hello my name is Rebecca Rubin and I am a Facebook-aholic.
Believe it or not, I was once a skeptic of this virtual behemoth. “What was the point?” I wondered. But as a result of persistent goading from friends and a clandestine desire to see what all the fuss was about, I eventually caved my senior year of high school and logged on. With one innocent click, I was hooked. Submerged into a fascinating world of other peoples’ thoughts, feelings, Saturday night plans, and romantic entanglements, I could spend hours at a time happily glued to my computer screen. Looking at people’s personal pictures, keeping tabs on ex-boyfriends, and staying up-to-date with what everyone I knew (and didn’t really know!) was doing provided endless entertainment. Pandora’s box had opened…and it was awesome. Before I knew it I’d become a self-described Facebook addict.
Going away to college further fed my addiction. With so many people to meet and activities to become involved in, Facebook was a useful way to keep track of all the new faces. My Sunday routine included Facebook “friending” the people I had met out partying the night before (for those of you not in the loop, “to friend” is now a widely recognized verb meaning “to connect with another person on Facebook”). On that note, how DID anyone throw parties before the invention of the Facebook Event? I’m told it happened...and don’t get me started on the complex world of Facebook flirting. For the record fellows: Facebook “poking” a girl you don’t know well is ALWAYS creepy. There are no exceptions. But I digress…
Not only did Facebook improve my social life at college, it also became an excellent tool for staying in touch with my friends back home. When there aren’t enough hours in the day for a lengthy phone conversation or Skype session, a simple “missing u, hope all is well!” post on a friend’s Facebook wall lets them know they’re in your thoughts. But in addition to helping me stay connected to people, I’m reluctant to admit that Facebook has become a means of identity formation and self-expression for me, a role I believe it serves for many people. At its core Facebook is a visual public journal, a vehicle through which to express one’s thoughts, feelings, and activities to the social world.
While the specific role Facebook plays varies from person to person, Facebook has clearly emerged as a powerful entity in today’s market—and one that should be harnessed by the business savvy. Not only does Facebook have site traffic through the roof, it also serves as an unparalleled information resource about a virtually limitless global audience of consumers. Your business can create Facebook advertisements specifically aimed at target consumers and/or form a company page and group to regularly interact with customers and keep them abreast of new activities and promotions. Anyone on Facebook is also able to become a fan of your business, placing your logo on their profile wall, which is visible to each of that person’s friends. All of these options strengthen the connection customers feel to your business thereby increasing brand loyalty. For those not born in the Facebook age who find the digital jungle of social networking confusing and overwhelming, Blue Water Media can come to the rescue! With our comprehensive Social Networking Packages, we’ll ensure you best make use of premier online social networking sites in order to optimally market your company to the online world.
So upon reflection, is my Facebook obsession juvenile, petty, and a poor use of my time here on earth? Perhaps. Am I planning to stop anytime soon? Definitely not! Facebook is fun. REALLY fun. It is now socially acceptable to be 21st century nosy gossip, to get an inside glimpse into the lives of friends and acquaintances that would never have been available 20 years ago. For better or for worse, it’s a way to feed that innate, unquenchable, and entirely human sense of curiosity. Which means it’s probably not going anywhere. So jump on board, it’s the 21st century baby! Create a personal or business profile and watch as your sales and social life skyrocket. Trust me, you won’t regret it. Happy Facebooking!