SMM: The Great Healer

When the Internet became widely available, many critics (I’m laughing right now at the thought of the Internet having critics. Seriously. The Internet.) said that it could create a culture of isolationism. They predicted people never leaving their homes to work or even grocery shop. There’s certainly a little of that going on in various sectors, but I think that social media marketing is somewhat of a backlash at anonymous advertising and seemingly faceless corporations.

Let me give you an example. On Friday, I called my Valero card’s customer service number to complain about the shoddy service I received from a representative while trying to pay for my bill. It wouldn’t do to vent to my electronic assistant, “Valerie,” (if that is in fact her real name). I kept screaming “OPERATOR!” or, alternately, “REPRESENTATIVE!” at “Valerie” even though I knew that the volume of my voice wouldn’t make her snap to it any quicker. Poor “Valerie” didn’t have a chance. I was too angry about having to jump through hoops to talk to someone.

I just wanted to talk to a real person. It’s just this weird thing I have – wanting to connect and interact with other people. I’m not alone. Social media experts universally stress being genuine and organic. That’s what the concept is based on, anyway; relationships are supposed to be built with these anonymous people peppered across the world. Social media is built on trust, word-of-mouth, input and feedback. To me, it feels like people are trying to reconnect as a result of being denied access to each other as corporations sprawled out and distanced themselves from the people they are trying to service.

In short? I’m touched by the grassroots appeal of it. I guess it’s the traditionalist in me.

This entry was posted on Wednesday, April 2nd, 2008 at 3:47 pm and is filed under Internet, Social Media. You can follow any responses to this entry through the RSS 2.0 feed. Both comments and pings are currently closed.

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