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The Power of Passion

August 14, 2010

“Can you be good at social networking if you are not passionate about it?”

That was a question that one of my friends, Aleigh, posed on Twitter this week. At first, I’ll be honest, I wavered on where I stood. I wavered because I’ve come across and met individuals who spend a great deal of time networking through Twitter, Facebook, Linkedin, and every other social network in between. At first glance, they’re rock stars. They’re visible 24/7 and have the ability to jump into conversations seamlessly and at the drop of a hat. They’ve got unbelievable networks that I’m certain took a lot of blood, sweat and tears to build.

At first glance, it seems that social networking has to be their passion because they do it all day every day. But that’s if you glance at them from a bird’s-eye view.

Upon closer inspection, I learned that for these individuals social networking wasn’t a passion, it was a means to an end. An obligation. A necessity. A way to make ends meet. It wasn’t something that they, deep down, were truly passionate about. That is where they fall, and will continue to fall, short. What they have to realize is that, sooner or later, their unpassion will inevitably make them unsuccessful.

So what would make someone passionate about social networking?

I became passionate about social networking at time when I needed it the most. Navigating through the sea of unemployment is not easy and for me social networking seemed like the perfect way to make my mark. I’m thankful, actually beyond thankful, that I was able to make it work.

Today, my passion for social networking stems from my desire and need to belong. To feel truly connected to the community that I interact with everyday of my life. This passion has shown me the true value of creating, establishing and maintaining relationships.

In my opinion it’s not the dollar signs but the relationships that make social networking invaluable.

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9 Comments leave one →
  1. August 14, 2010 4:03 pm

    It seems to me that most people who dedicate themselves to Social Media are good at it because they have found a rhythm that works; or, they are celebrities and people want to include them, so the “networking” part automatically happens. However, I find that most people who use it aren’t driven to make it work for them. It either does, or it doesn’t.

    I wrote about reactive vs proactive social media users on my blog a year or two ago. The premise is simple: reactive people talk about what’s happened, proactive people talk about what’s happening. I’d venture to say, that the passionate ones, thrive in the “what’s happening” space, not the “I just ate lunch at Chipotle” space.

    • August 15, 2010 1:05 pm

      I absolutely agree with you Kyle. The proactive ones, the ones that truly understand the value of social networking while simultaneously thriving in the “what’s happening” space are the ones that are going to truly make it in the social media world. Those are the ones that will stand out above the rest.

      I think it goes beyond just making it work for you. Because making it work for you is only part of it. If you choose to simply make it work does that mean that you’re passionate about it? Because sometimes getting caught up in the “making it work” can make you blind to the true value of your network and what they can do for you beyond $$$, business or # fans and followers). I feel another few blog posts coming on!

  2. Rick permalink
    August 14, 2010 4:08 pm

    What I see in the midst of some of the “rockstars” is that they don’t have the stars shining in their eyes like I might. They are passionate about what they do, and they’re passionate about the tools they use – and they see social media as a tool, not the goal. In that sense, I think they bring a good balance to it, goes somewhere that can be taken seriously more than just upping numbers of fans and followers. Is that around what you were thinking?

    Looking forward to #SoFresh in CLT – @rickcaffeinated

    • August 15, 2010 1:19 pm

      Rick – great comment!

      I think that social networking should be both a tool AND a goal. Forsaking one for the other would just be a lost opportunity. It’s certainly not about just upping numbers and fans (sure if you are increasing them then that means you are doing something right) but its about the relationships you build and maintaining and growing those relationships. They’re the most valuable part of social networking (in my opinion). Being passionate about the tool that you use means making 100% use of that tool and not to just use it to meet your goal and make ends meet.

      Looking forward to meeting you tomorrow!

  3. August 14, 2010 9:54 pm

    Great post Genevieve! I’ve found my passion for Social Media too. I do believe that passion is necessary, in order to become truly successful in whatever you choose. Along with the desire to interact and to network … it is about being Social.

    @Mysticle

    • August 15, 2010 1:21 pm

      I couldn’t agree with you more Misty – I think passion is the true key to success

  4. Jason permalink
    August 15, 2010 9:20 am

    I love this. I’ve watched the people who are not passionate about social media get involved with it only to fall away from it six months down the road. It’s like when I was in sales, you have to have passion about what you are talking about, or at least be able to fake it really well! Even then, I believe there’s only so long you can fake it until it’s noticed and no one’s buying what your saying.
    I got into social media out of a love of connecting with people, not realizing its full capacity. And like you I became passionate about social media at a time when I needed it. Social networking has given me a new passion.
    Great post, you’re doing great things in the social media space!

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