In Search Of Social Media’s Light Switch

In Search Of Social Medias Light Switch image social media LightswitchIn Search Of Social Medias Light Switch


I’ve lived in the same apartment for the past seven years. A couple of months before my lease was up, I was informed that the new owners were raising the rent yet again. So I decided it was time to relocate. Then about a week before I moved, I rushed into my bedroom and reached for the bathroom light switch. But it was gone. Not from the wall, but from my memory. After several tries I remembered where it was.

My mind seemingly has a mind of its own and chose to delete that bit of information from its database to make room for new information since the location of the light switch my now former apartment was unnecessary. And that was just the beginning of the data purge. Now with each day, the names of local bartenders, shortcuts around traffic, and even the reasons why I found those annoying neighbors so annoying seemingly just disappear to make room for new information in my new city is of more use.

It made me think about social media marketing and the desire to always flip that light switch to the on position. Yet despite our best efforts, our readers, followers, and fans are always going to switch it off in lieu of information they deem more important. The ultimate Holy Grail would be to discover those times after the mind purges the useless information making room for new and hopefully engaging information. Impossible? It partly depends on the focus of your audience, but the key factor is timing. Football fans like to comment during and right after the game. Take for instance Oreo’s tweet during the Superbowl blackout. Perfectly timed, occurring precisely after we forgot about it.

Wouldn’t it be great to be able to know those key times in business to reach our customers, fans and followers? Of course, but so would a free commercial during the Superbowl and the chances of that happening are (slightly) slimmer than Bar Refaeli kissing that kid from the Go Daddy commercial when the cameras aren’t rolling. We can’t control customers minds, but we can control to some degree the messages we want them to remember.

Consider this:

  • The “disappearing light switch” can be avoided by creating content that is both needed and time-sensitive social media.
  • If the content is obsolete and ordinary it will fade from memory as will we and/or our brand and company as a trusted source.

Think about it before each post you make. Is it memorable or forgettable? Is it needed or superfluous? Create information we retain after the web browser is closed and the computer is off. Doing so can help keep that switch flipped on longer and hopefully, more effectively.

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