Okay, so I am going to ask you to leave all your preconceptions about facebook [fb]at the door. I had to, in order to embark upon this journey of social networking [*cringes * 'it sounds so lame'... ] Anyhow, let's just get all of our opinions and insecurities out of the way and take a look at how facebook can be our 'friend':
- When you join fb, you put yourself out there. And let's face it, if you're not out there, how do you expect anyone to find you? The whole idea behind it is you have friends, your friends have friends, their friends have friends and so on... [you've all seen 'six degrees of separation, right?] So, as you become active on fb, your comments, quotes, feedback is seen on your friends pages. People who think you have something interesting to say, may then apply to be your friend.
- Be open to friend requests: after all, something about you made them want to be your friend. If someone turns out to be a weird stalker type person, you can always 'block' them later.
- Try to keep your fb profile personal. Yes, I know: right now your stock is burning holes in your pocket and you want to tell the world about it so that you can sell enough stuff to make the rent, but..... nobody likes being sold to. REMEMBER THIS! [sorry for shouting, but this is really important]. The general advice is to keep your posts personal, and every now and then do a "hey guys, check out my rad new..." Friends don't sell to friends, but they do share their excitement and joy about what they are doing! Friends also like to support their friends, so you should get a few thumbs up and positive feedbacks along the way.
- Do have a picture of yourself, and any other details like the town you live in, middle name etc. Last time I checked, there were 31,000 Jane Smiths on fb - you get my drift. Essentially you want people to find you, so help them.
- Once you have a few friends, go through their friends list - buddy up! Don't be afraid to send a friend request to a complete stranger - the worst they can do is ignore your request. Hey, at least you get to work through you schoolyard traumas and be a grown up about it this time round.
- Have fun! Meeting new people, catching up with old friends, getting involved in people's lives is where it's all happening. It's called relationship, so enjoy it!
- Never miss an opportunity - that local barista chick that makes your coffee everyday is more than likely a fb fiend, next time you are grabbing a latte ask : "Are you on fb?" - most likely she'll give you her full name and spelling. People are friendly [and vanity gets the better of most, so they like to have as many friends as possible]
- Remember that in every society and civilisation the focus has been on community - it is how we get things done, how we spread the word, share our excitement, our challenges and frustrations, it's how we get help.... fb is your way of accessing a global community of like-minded individuals, and with 6 billion or so people on the planet, there's got to be a few out there with your name on them! So go for it, set yourself up a profile page and get friendly!
Oh, and if you friend request me, I'll definitely accept [see gadget on the right hand side of my blog page]
Stay tuned for the next post..... facebook fan pages