Home PodcastBlog Three Ways to Use Social Media to Be Better At Your Job

Three Ways to Use Social Media to Be Better At Your Job

February 1, 2012

Social media is a great way to share knowledge. Unfortunately some people associate “social media” with “a good way to waste time.” Yes, that’s true too. But just like with any medium, it’s all about how you use it. Marshall McLuhan coined the term “the medium is the message” in the 1960s, and I believe this still holds true today. The medium for content delivery has obviously shifted. Instead of sitting in front of the boob tube, we now try to reach the end of the interwebs.

If this is how you’re spending your time online, why not try something new? You know, use the interwebs to be productive and all that jazz. It may even make you better at your job. There are many companies that provide a creative medium to facilitate and share messages. Use them for good. Here are some ideas to make social media work for you:

1. I was an early adapter to Pinterest, getting on board almost a year ago. It’s been fun to watch it grow over the last few months. The visual medium is definitely the message with this new up-and-comer. It acts as a virtual pinboard of photos you come across online. As much fun as it is to find and pin photos to fashion and travel boards, there are plenty of ways to use the platform in a more professional way. If you’re in marketing or communications this post about 14 Brands to Stalk on Pinterest is a must-read. I certainly was surprised to see the Seattle Seahawks on Pinterest. If you’re not sure of the best way to use Pinterest for your job, you can always ask on Quora.


2. Quora is an interesting platform, which I find more and more valuable over time:

Quora connects you to everything you want to know about. Quora aims to be the easiest place to write new content and share content from the web. We organize people and their interests so you can find, collect and share the information most valuable to you.

If you love consuming information, or have an inquiring mind with lots of questions, Quora is the place for you (we can all officially say goodbye to Yahoo! answers). You can subscribe to any topic you find interesting, and get updates when people answer your questions. I subscribe to about 60 topics, and have found that the real value lies in the quality of the answers. The detailed responses from professionals with high levels of expertise show that Quora is more of a slower, reflective experience with authenticity baked in.

3. It’s been a few months since Facebook introduced the Subscribe button, which allows you to see updates from people you’re not friends with. The dynamics of how we interact on the web have changed so much on a macro-level just over the last few years, that this, surprisingly is no longer creepy. Ok, maybe it’s a little creepy if you Unfriended that one weirdo, who then appears as “subscribed” to your Updates. That’s internet stalking taken to the next level. But I’m not talking about that. What I’m alluding to is the ability to get news you want to know about instead of the 9th update about MafiaWars. This feature has benefited 1000s of journalists, with the “average journalist seeing a 320 percent increase in subscribers since November 2011,” according to Facebook’s analysis. Time spent on Facebook can now officially be productive, since we’re able to get more personalized, relevant news.


What are some platforms that you use to consume or share content online? Please share in the comment section below. Oh, and drop a comment if you’d like an invite to Pinterest!