Have it your way. Talk all you want. Converse on Twitter. I do it too.
But at the end of the day, results speak for themselves. Networking by conversing on Twitter is plain and simple, a terrible way to network. Look at the top people on Twitter based on followers. The majority of them have created real-life tangible results that are changing the world. Are they using Twitter the same way you are?
Everywhere I turn these days, I am inundated with advertising. Everybody wants my attention. Brands try to reach me on television, online, when I’m on the bus, listening to the radio, and even when I’m working out in the gym.
Lately, I’ve been swarmed by personal branding. When I’m on Twitter, I feel like a I’ve walked in to a storm of terrible personal branding. Everybody has a platform, wants to be heard, and yells in my ear. It’s like coming to a party where there’s no host, everybody’s screaming, and the only thing that matters is what kind of car you drive, or in Twitter’s case, how many followers you’ve amassed.
I could talk for hours about my wrestle with Twitter. Is it worth my time if I’m trying to have an information-light diet? Is there a real ROI? What is the value if almost everyone on there is selfish and I don’t have any real experiences with 99% of my followers?
As Alana Taylor puts it, Twitter satisfies “the selfishness of being famous, the greed of wanting instant results, the need to speak and be heard, the freedom and equality in being able to take part in a conversation no matter your economic or social status”.
So, if everyone is on Twitter for their own benefit, then is there an extremely attractive ROI from it? I think there are other ways to build your brand in a more tangible and meaningful way. It’s one that may not garner you Twitter followers, but it’s one that will expand your network of people who have had more memorable experiences that cut through the clutter of noise on the web.
Network by doing
What a concept! It speaks for itself, but it’s simplicity is the core of it’s power. By getting involved and taking action, you will create incredible relationships that have amazing value. The relationships you can create by taking action will far exceed any Twitter relationship you can make. What are some ways to make this happen?
- Get involved politically
- Create cross-company initiatives
- Go to lunch with people across your organization
- Do philanthropy work
- Join a professional organization in your area
- Find a hobby
By all means, if you can think of other ways you can network by doing, then please voice up. We need a generation of doers not a generation of big talk. This is the real networking. It’s the kind that will build lifelong relationships, and allow you to connect with people who will help you out at the drop of a dime.