SM Fundamentals: Think of social media as a behaviour

I recently wrote an article for the International Association of Business Communicators’ CW Bulletin about the ten fundamentals of social media every charity and nonprofit should know. I am also sharing them here in a series of posts so that I can go into more detail about each than I could in the article and so we can discuss them individually. I should note that while my audience for the article was people involved with charities or nonprofits, these fundamentals are relevant to everyone on social media especially any small t0 mid-sized business or organization.

Here is the fourth post in the series.

Social media is a behaviour and not a set of tools. Integrate it into how you live and work.

If you view social media as a set of tools, it will show in your use. The most common clue is that you are only pushing out information. Another is that you are clearly following a set of “how-to-do” social media instructions as if you wanted to be an artist and painted by numbers.

A more organic approach is necessary. Your use of social media should be an extension of how you live your life—at home and at work. By integrating it into how you live, your online social life becomes a part of how you behave in your day to day life as much as how you interact with the person at the next desk, potential donors you meet or joining your team for a post-game beer. When having these interactions online is a natural, seamless part of your day, you are at a point where you can experience the personal and professional benefits you already take for granted with the people around you.