Social media, be it Twitter, Google+, LinkedIn or even OG platforms like Blogger or WordPress can be powerful tools both personally and professionally. Each of these platforms, to me, has a purpose (I just realized what purpose Google+ meant to me).
Twitter – This is my primary social networking tool. I use Twitter to find and share information, connect or follow people who share similar interests and even meet new people in person (I am a trend setter here, I met my wife in an AOL chat room in 2000).
Facebook – I connect on Facebook very sparingly, only with family and close friends as this is my primary means of sharing personal information about myself and family so I won’t connect with just anyone (nor will I show you my Facebook profile if we aren’t already connected).
Google+ – This is a combination of Twitter and Facebook in terms of features, and I leverage Google+ similar to how I leverage Twitter but taking advantage of the advanced features like hangouts, circles etc. I connect with other people that I may or may not have met for the purposes of sharing and finding information.
LinkedIn – I use LinkedIn as a means to promote myself professionally and connect with past and current colleagues and again will cross over and connect with people I have met on other social network platforms.
Blogging (WordPress, Blogger or Tumblr) – I use my blog to share my thoughts and experiences in hopes of being able to help other people who are wondering about similar topics. My posts may be anything from something about a new feature in VMware, social media trends or just a random rant.
Now I know there are a lot more social media type services available, some I use, some I don’t but those are more fringe use cases and not part of my everyday life. That’s not to say you shouldn’t use those – quite the opposite. If you are passionate about photography or art you should certainly be on Instagram or Pintrest, or if you are passionate about dining maybe Foursquare or Yelp are higher on your list. Your mileage will vary with each and every social media site based your interests.
If you find these services useful, don’t forget there are several ways you can leverage social media and the power it harnesses at work as well through private/internal social enterprise collaboration tools like Jive, MangoApps or SocialCast.