Whilst out driving I happened to pass the house my auntie had lived during her adult life. At that moment I wished I could simply drop by for a cup of tea with her. She had died several years before and someone else now lived in her house, which she and my uncle had built. I wished I had dropped in on her more often when she was living there, when of course I could do just that.
How many of us do drop by to see our friends or family in the moment? If someone, without prior warning, turned up to visit you, would you find that a little surprising? Perhaps dropping by is dying out as we have become a more digital society. Is this making us a little self-conscious about our communication or our physical interactions with each other? Are we separating the physical connection from the digital, is one being lost to the other? A consequence of the digital revolution perhaps, along with the ubiquity of mobile phones?
Do we now interact with fellow humans once we have opted in, filtered and edited?
Figures from the Office for National Statistics and Eurostat show Britons are among the most prolific social networkers in Europe – only beaten by the Netherlands
• Almost a fifth of over 65s now use social networks
• Half of UK adults now use Facebook and Twitter
YouGov research shows the extent that all ages are increasingly using social media with usage of Facebook amongst younger generations is practically ubiquitous, with a staggering 95% of 16-20 year olds and 74% of 21-24 year olds accessing the social networking site within the last month
British people spend 9 hours a day (that’s 30 years of our lives) staring at screens. We spend more time online than any other nation in the world. Does this also mean we don’t drop by any more? Is there simply not any time for the real world human connection in the digital age?
Is social media marketing misleading us to virtual interactions and relationships? For business it’s not enough to keep it online. You create, maintain and build relationships with customers and partners. People do business with people they like and trust. Social media helps to build that, but it doesn’t stop there.
Networking online is every bit as similar as real life networking, but it does need you to drop by and keep the relationship real and face to face. Without this, you may find that opportunities and customers/clients can be lost.