It finally dawned on me, after yet another useless waste of my time skimming headlines in a social media site, why I don’t like social media and why, if I bother to join, I quickly lose interest.

It’s because the content that’s posted isn’t for me.

The motivation for posting is to get yourself, your web site, your business, your articles, your blog, your products, your services, your brand, your weird user name and your big important thing noticed, found, clicked, linked to and commented on.

The point, purpose and driving force for most of the content is that it’s for you, the person posting, not me.

Sure, I’ve posted an article once in awhile somewhere. When I do, I’ve thought about it for more than 3 seconds. I debate to the death inside myself whether or not the article has any value to readers. I feel awkward posting my own stuff. It’s like begging for birthday presents from strangers.

And yes, I’ve had duds.

I don’t ever think I’m today’s gift to the masses and therefore, wouldn’t dare subject you, to me, on a daily basis. I wouldn’t dream of posting five or more articles of mine in a row, for example. I don’t have five things in a row important or clever or useful enough to post, for gawd’s sake.

I’m not desperate and okay, if you are, it shows. Clearly.

I have an ongoing relationship with several blogs and web sites who run my blog posts or articles with my permission. Some of them just come and grab what they want. They have an open invite and to this day, when I see they ran something, I get all excited. It’s such an honor to know THEY CHOSE it.

I didn’t shove it down their throats.

Some sites want to hear from me if I have something for them to consider, so I drop an email with a link to something I think may be a fit. It’s up to the editors to make the final call. Some of them agree with my suggestion and some of them don’t. They just won’t run it. I don’t always get feedback on why something is rejected and after awhile, if I keep missing the mark, I just don’t send them anything else.

I’m not a mind reader. Editors understand their readers better than I do. Social sites will take anything they can get.

Which is why social media is such a circus. There are no editors to help sort out the substance from absolute mind numbing junk. I don’t have time to skim long pages of headlines filled with content that isn’t targeted to me. Topic categories aren’t enough of a filter. They don’t separate advanced content from the basic.

Nobody has developed a socially driven site that says, “Hi Kim! Here are today’s links to what you want, because we know you, know what you need, know what you love and we especially know what interests YOU.” And then it slips me a nice glass of wine, removes all the distractions so I can actually read online and …

Come on. Is this too much to ask for? I need genuine and unique content. I appreciate well written articles, even if I disagree with what it says. I really admire good writing. I hate hearing the same tips 3456 times. I don’t want to be a groupie in your fan club where you obviously admire somebody and are trying to brown nose your way into their kingdom.

The other day my daughter offered to make a web site for me. In her mind, at her age, the place to be is in your own social site that connects with other persons’ social sites and the sole purpose is to show pictures of your cat and talk about your boyfriend.

Nobody cares about my cats and if I had a boyfriend, you wouldn’t want to hear the gory details of how I drove him crazy and he left me in flurry of screaming curse words and the sound of screeching tires on the driveway.

Makes for a great story but what do you get out of it?

What, exactly, do YOU get out of social media sites as a mere reader other than possibly being entertained or informed? How many minutes does it take to find that thing that informed you and was it really worth the time it took to hunt for it?

What do you get as a content submitter? The benefits to marketers are obvious. But understand this. I am also a site visitor and I hate being used by you.

If you want me to visit more often and take your content seriously, quit selling.

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Kim Krause Berg’s long background in web design, SEO and usability includes software application functional and user interface testing, accessibility, information architecture and persuasive design. She shared her passion for Usability and SEO through her site and private consulting at Cre8pc for 17 years. Kim founded Cre8asiteforums in 1998. In the fall of 2012 she sold her forums to Internet Marketing Ninjas and retired from private consulting to join their Executive Management team where she continues her work in usability testing, customer experience and conversions design.

My Online Course: Web Site Usability 101


American Society for Information Science and Technology (ASIS&T)

Information Architecture Institute

Usability Professionals Association (UPA)