From Facebook Phobia to 900 Friends

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My Facebook page is part class reunion, part family get-together. Some days it’s a therapy couch, others it’s a podium. I’ve found friends I thought would forget me and befriended strangers. My clients mix it with my mum and mum mixes it with everyone.” 

Facebook just sent me a private post. You’ve made 900 friends on Facebook! Thank you for bringing the world closer together. We think that is something to celebrate.”

Nine years and 900 friends, well that’s one hundred friends for every year.

Facebook posted a collage. It included my cousin (friends since 2008), a friend I met as she danced on a table in a bar (friends since 2009), a media colleague (friends since 2011) and a client (friends since 2015).  All my clients are my Facebook friends.  I run a Dangerous Bloggers on Facebook private group.

Yes it’s an edge.

My mum is there too. My son recently ‘friended’ me. My daughter ‘friends’ and ‘unfriends’ me a few times each year. And that’s ok.

So how did I end up with 900 friends?

My Facebook welcome was not always warm and open.

I was afraid. When I joined I didn’t share much about myself at all. My privacy settings were high. Few of my purported ‘Facebook friends’ could see anything I posted. If I posted at all. Nine years ago, paranoia about social media was louder than the cheering.

Then Iggy came into my life. Iggy Pintado had written a book called Connection Generation. He boldly predicted the impact and influence of social media. He envisaged a future in which social media would play a significant role. Really? Would it?

Iggy said so. I came to be persuaded too. I was Iggy’s publicist.

Iggy cleverly cast social media users as ‘connectors’. We could be an open connector, closed connector or in-between.  The category you fell into was based on privacy setting, participation and behaviour. It was a brand new way to look at social media. And I began to see things differently too.

Iggy received plenty of media attention. Some were sceptical: “Are you kidding?” They interviewed him just to challenge his predictions.  Some were some curious: “Really….? Maybe we should speak to him”. Some realised they needed Iggy’s help ASAP.

As I ran the campaign, it dawned on me. I was a ‘closed connector.’ My caution was strong, my privacy settings high. Almost every Facebook friend was locked out of my posts.

My online behaviour was the social media equivalent of hand withdrawn and mouth clenched.

Over coming years I recovered my health and life from the fears that ran them. I changed my social media settings too.

As a publicist and business owner I couldn’t afford not to experiment in this brave new market place.  I knew I needed a voice – my own. I needed to remove the caution my day-to-day life was infused with. That meant my online life too. I gradually became a more open connector.

At about the same time in my life I was such a lost soul a friend insisted I join a local club. I became a Bondi Iceberg. It took a lot of courage to turn up winter Sundays; stand around with strangers (nothing on but swimmers), dive into fifteen degree water and race. It was a perfect decision I’ve never regretted. Now I can happily walk into the club or visit that pool any day and say hi to someone who knows my name.

My Facebook page has become a great club too. My Facebook page is part class reunion, part family get-together. Some days it’s a therapy couch, others it’s a podium. I’ve found friends I thought would forget me and befriended strangers. My clients mix it with my mum and mum mixes it with everyone.

I hope Iggy would be proud (he’s a Facebook friend). I thank him for the inspiration to open my social media arms. Happy 900 Friends to my Facebook page.

Are you concerned you’re not social and don’t have an online profile? Are you wanting to share your Dangerous Voice with the world but worried you don’t know where to start?

I will share my tools of voice, writing and online profile building at the upcoming Dangerous Blogging Workshops. Join me in Sydney June 19, July 3; Melbourne June 21. You will write your first Dangerous Blog at this workshop. I will show you the tools my clients are using improve voice and visibility.

Or if you need to find your strongest voice and have writing done sooner, my three day residential program with six dedicated writing sessions may be appropriate. Dangerous & Brilliant Writers’ Retreat dates are 19-22 July 2017; 18-21 October 2017, 24-27 January 2018.  Get in touch so I can understand your needs and decide if this event will be able to help you or not.

Click here to learn more or contact directly katie@katiemac.com.au or 0422 590 321 to have your needs professionally assessed
http://www.eventbrite.com.au/o/katie-mcmurray-owner-katiemac-publicity-2818776274

Do you know someone who needs help creating a Dangerous Voice? Please feel free to forward this email to them. Thank you for sharing the love, Katie

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