Batman Hates Facebook and Pinterest

Bruce Wayne: Criminals aren’t complicated, Alfred. Just have to figure out what he’s after.
Alfred Pennyworth: With respect Master Wayne, perhaps this is a man that *you* don’t fully understand, either. A long time ago, I was in Burma. My friends and I were working for the local government. They were trying to buy the loyalty of tribal leaders by bribing them with precious stones. But their caravans were being raided in a forest north of Rangoon by a bandit. So, we went looking for the stones. But in six months, we never met anybody who traded with him. One day, I saw a child playing with a ruby the size of a tangerine. The bandit had been throwing them away.
Bruce Wayne: So why steal them?
Alfred Pennyworth: Well, because he thought it was good sport. Because some men aren’t looking for anything logical, like money. They can’t be bought, bullied, reasoned, or negotiated with. Some men just want to watch the world burn.
“The Dark Knight”

I don’t really know if Batman hates Facebook and Pinterest but I am confident that if he did exist he would use social media to track criminals. I am also confident that he would face the same questions we do regarding how to use his time effectively.

Because the thing is that time is a limited resource and there are more than a few social media platforms begging for our attention. It is why my clients expect me to be able to provide some guidance on how to navigate the social media swampland.

My “response” is to build a presence where their customers and prospective customers spend their time and to remember Alfred’s advice to Bruce Wayne about some men not looking for anything logical.

Social Media Is About People

Social media is about people and people do not always behave in a logical manner.  The best example of that lack of logic is the impulse purchase that so many of us have made and continue to make.

It is why companies spend so much time determining the best way to display products and lay out their stores. It is a big part of why car salesmen can be so aggressive. The research shows that it works and that you can leverage that lack of logic.

But I am not trying to promote that here or suggest that is how you should do business because my social media philosophy runs counter to that. There may be an intersection or two but for the most part I push for a softer approach.

Use Social Media To Build Relationships

The most effective use of social media is as a tool to build relationships with people. One of the ways we do that is by using social media to tell stories that people understand and relate to.

What we try to do is spend time figuring out how to use social media to tell our story in a way that encourages interaction and engagement.

That is part of why you will find personal posts peppered throughout this blog. When I share stories about trying to figure out the right age for children to receive a personal cellphone or vent about homework it builds a connection with other parents.

But I know that won’t resonate with everyone so sometimes you’ll see posts about favorite movies, music or books because it is another way to build connections.

Batman, Connections and Platforms

Batman probably isn’t my favorite superhero but I like him because he doesn’t have any superpowers and is forced to compensate by using his mind. If Batman were real he really would spend time analyzing social media platforms and would probably develop a program that made it easy for him to monitor everything that was going on.

But Batman/Bruce Wayne have trouble building connections with people and that is his fatal flaw, at least where social media comes into play.

The most popular blogs aren’t always those that supply the best or most useful content. They are often those that do the best job of building connections with people.

It is a big part of why I am an advocate for working hard to build a community among your readers because the community is like that rising tide that lifts all boats.

They help you with those connections and with figuring out how to make things work. Sometimes they provide perspective that you don’t have.

What do you think?

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11 Comments

  1. Lori Gosselin January 7, 2013 at 11:28 am

    Josh, the fact that communities offer more perspectives is one of the reasons I love it to much! For instance over at my place today, two people have responded as yet to the Dear LFI question. I felt the first one had it nailed down but the second one offered a slightly different perspective from a completely different orientation. Then the third one came at it with a whole different set of ideas! It’s amazing to me what a group-share can come up with!
    And by the way, my niece has convinced me of the value of Pinterest so I’m checking it out. Today!
    😉
    Lori

    • Josh January 7, 2013 at 6:26 pm

      Hi Lori,

      Community makes a huge difference and it is something I think is quite special. LFI is a great example of that. The perspective and guidance can be quite wonderful.

  2. Tim Bonner January 7, 2013 at 8:48 am

    I’m with you all the way there Josh.

    Batman would have no end of problems with Facebook and Pinterest because he was just lousy at making any connections with people.

    Social media for me is definitely about being open, making connections, saying “hi” and generally being interested in others. It’s the only way I notice other people in the long stream of things going on.

    • Josh January 7, 2013 at 6:23 pm

      Hi Tim,

      The long stream of things really resonates with me because sometimes it feels like the online world is nothing but noise and clutter.

      It is also why I have become cautious about where I spend my time. I want the education, involvement and engagement.

  3. Kumar January 6, 2013 at 11:46 pm

    Josh, Batman would have loved your idea of multitasking. I enjoyed it.

    Kumar

  4. Frithjof January 6, 2013 at 3:58 pm

    Brilliant Kumar!
    I love the analogy, your title drew me in and the conclusions are awesome. Thanks for a great post

  5. Kumar January 6, 2013 at 12:08 pm

    Josh, Batman the savior would have become a Fatman like ME, had he got addicted to social media .
    Social Media – Ubiquitous technology for corporates, is the key to building long lasting relationship with customers and their feedback can really helps in creating better products.
    Having said that, everyone wants to feel important and special, they have to pampered like kings, therefore meaningful relationships cannot be built without personal touch. Its really getting one on one these days. 4P’s and Funnel concepts which we read are really becoming obsolete in networking clutter and especially in context of Social Media, its people, promotion and personalization these days.

    I think I need to stop now otherwise it will be a lecture series. Thanks Josh my friend, man you are a gem(though discovered by my wife) and thank you for taking time out and commenting on my post as well.

    Kumar

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