Six Reasons Why Your Social Profile Annoys Me

Posted on 23rd January 2015

I’m not some young hip techie geek. I’m not in a cool band. I’m also not some teenager sexting and sharing pictures of his genitals with girls on WhatsApp. I am a 40 something using social media mainly in the context of business and largely through LinkedIn.

I’m no Richard Branson or Seth Godin – I am remarkably average. I’m not the best at what I do, and I’m certainly not the worst.

I put time and effort into defining myself based on my (oh-so-flawed) personality, as I’d much rather that than the insipid, vanilla-coated social commentary I see diluting my eyeballs every single day.

You Are You, Warts And All

In a world where we review reviews about reviews about people and places we may not even know, we have also come to understand the unrealistic nature of expectations when see it and hear it.

It’s like the old BBC Points Of View or someone writing into Esther Ransom at That’s Life:

Dear BBC. When I booked this hotel room in Bora Bora on Trip Advisor for just £30 per night, I was shocked to discover that the breakfast was not sausage, bacon and eggs. And, to top it off, the local lass on reception couldn’t even speak perfect English.  I am therefore rating this Bed and Breakfast as 1 out of ten for value and advise that no one ever goes there ever again.

In the short space of time that Web 2.0 became the social web and we all had a voice through social media (no matter how boring we were), we’ve already cottoned onto the fact that 95% of the stuff we read online (that’s been written unedited) is a actually a load of shite. So, why try and be someone you are not?

  • Why not update that ten year old photo of yourself looking 3 stone lighter?
  • Why not impart a little personality into what you talk about in your updates?
  • Perhaps don’t talk about yourself in the third person – you really are not that special for us to think someone else would take the time to write about you anyway.

Ultimately the laws of attraction mean that not everyone will like you anyway, so why not try and stand out more to the people who might?

What’s Your Name?

Tell you what really annoys me. In my head a voice says, “What a knob, do they really think that will make them stand out?”.  It’s when people change their LinkedIn Profile name to cover what they do. eg.

Crag Killick ** super-duper marketing in Basingstoke call now on 01256 472266**

I think they should force people who do that to change their name by deed poll. That would put a stop to it. It would also result in very long answer phone messages though – perhaps I didn’t really think that one through.

I Am Cool I Tell You. I Am, I Am, I Am

If you have to tell people you are innovative or creative I can pretty much tell you as a matter of fact… You’re not. You’re far from it. You are to innovation what Michael Jackson is to baby-sitting.

When someone is… they just are.

Let other people judge what you are based on your action not your words.

Job Titles

You are the CEO are you?

How many people work for your organisation?

Three you say?

Are you also Chief Bell-End?

Now I know some people love a good job title. You may have guessed, I am not one of those people. Within two clicks I have just seen the profile of a Global Learning Organisation and Upstream Change Lead. Need I say more?

Stop Sharing Bland

collaborate tee-shirtWhy not just pretend you are a 1990s boardroom and wear a tee-shirt with an inspirational slogan on?

I don’t care that Richard Branson thinks we can all be leaders.

And, unless you are self-employed and have actually had to employ people don’t tell me what it takes to be a good employer and how to treat teams.

Stop sharing the same old boring, tired cliché business metaphors.

Grow a pair of balls and write something original.

Sorry. Have We Met?

When people just try to connect to me without any pre-conceived notion of making it worth my while or giving me a reason why they are interrupting my stream… I get confused.

Word of mouth is one of the most powerful sales / marketing connections you can make in B2B. It’s effective because of the trust and authority that comes with it.

By connecting with people you do not know you are gatecrashing.

You are also undermining your reputation…. Or building one as a person who is obviously so unlikeable they have to force themselves on you like the person who gets far too drunk, far too quickly at the Christmas party.

It’s Not All Doom and Gloom

It might not seem like it, but I do actually like people. I’m just getting to that age where I only want to put effort into the people I engage with and my levels of patience aren’t great. If you have ever been to one of the organised networking events you will understand exactly what I am saying.

I want to be challenged.

If I hire someone I don’t need sales patter, I am looking for proof that they know their shit and have their finger on the pulse. I can read a book of clichés thank you. I can google your information about your industry… BUT, what have you got to offer?

I also need to connect on a persona level.

If you can do that, I become your fan. I’m much more likely to refer you and to talk about you. And I’m not talking about the waste of space that is LinkedIn Endorsements – I’m talking good old fashioned networking – the type of business etiquette that is being eroded by bland ‘social’ networking.


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