It’s interesting to see how Facebook has evolved over the years, both in terms as a social network and as a marketing platform. Like Facebook, I too have grown in the 10 years I’ve been posting and using the social media website. I had to figure out my identity and develop my own tactics to this thing called life and I got to do that with some social media grace.
I signed up for my Facebook account in 2006, my senior year of high school. Facebook was this elite website that only “college students” could access with a college email address. The notoriety of it all had caught my interest, so as soon as Facebook made itself accessible to anyone over 13 years of age, I was on board to make an account. I was posting pictures of prom, sharing song lyrics as my status to fit my mood, and befriending anyone who asked. I had an instant love for sharing.
Facebook kept me connected to my high school friends as we separated and went to different colleges. It brought me new friends as I continued to add everyone I crossed paths with in to my network of friends. It turned into a tool for working in group projects and for event planning. It just made my life easier (or lazier, however you want to look at it).
To some, Facebook was a total time sucker, and still is. It can be distracting and welcoming to drama. I’ve never thought of it as any of those things. I have always had some gravitational pull to use Facebook for purposes other than “stalking” an ex-boyfriend or posting about what I ate for lunch.
My senior year of college, as a Public Relations major, I needed a way to promote a local business. I’d gone over every piece of traditional marketing that I could and realized I needed something different. I needed Facebook. I changed my typical media kit to include Facebook as a tool for business. It was the first time my professor had seen such a change, but was excited at the thought of possibilities Facebook could bring the students and the businesses in my campaign methods course. It was relatable and the results from the campaign measured up to the results of traditional marketing.
At the time, I just thought it was really cool that I was able to use Facebook in class. I didn’t realize the full potential of what I had just done. So I graduated and tried finding jobs in the field of communications, never looking back and thinking that I would find a job that allowed me to use Facebook with the intention of promoting and building brand awareness.
Now, 10 years after that first Facebook post, I find myself in a position that allows me to create content that encourages readers to engage and share. Social media marketing is now so much more than just Facebook, but as far as social media sites go, Facebook paved the way. So Facebook is not just a time sucker for me, it’s a social action or a social and professional lifestyle that I’ve embraced. Even with 10 years of Facebook experience under my belt, I wouldn’t label myself a social media expert just yet, but I would be willing to call myself a Facebook advocate, for sure.