Social media has taken over my life

Do you Bump? I do. And you should. It's fun. Essentially if you come across another Bump user - in a bar or elsewhere - you simply "bump" your phones together and, hey presto, you have exchanged contact details.

Do you Bump? I do. And you should. It's fun.

Essentially if you come across another Bump user – in a bar or elsewhere – you simply “bump” your phones together and, hey presto, you have exchanged contact details. A sort of business card exchange for the 21st century, if you like. And after that, well, I guess that's up to you.

Then there's my Facebook page and Twitter account. Facebook's more for my personal life and Twitter's great for  what I'm up to from hour to hour, assuming I can remember my log-in details.

Tumblr is a cross between Twitter and blogging. It's short-form blogging, or Tumblelogging. Blogging itself is a bit passé in some quarters, though it is still an excellent and timely form of communication, especially for business users, which reminds me, I really must update my PRWeek blog…

LinkedIn is a must for business, especially if I'm looking for a job - which I'm not at the moment, by the way - but there are also numerous communities and groups relevant to work and the PR and communications industries. It's great for keeping in contact. I almost track my friends and contacts by osmosis these days.

And what about Foursquare…? It allows me to check in at restaurants, bars, shops, and other locations and rack up points that eventually count towards a, errr, free coffee or beer or some such. This is a tricky one - and you have to be careful with it, as it registers who you are with when you check in to a place (if they are also on Foursquare), which could get embarrassing. And it can also put your lunch companions off when you ignore them for the first five minutes as you are “checking in" to Foursquare – especially if they're paying.

Then there's e-mail, most people have at least two or three accounts, a smart phone and, often, a second phone. IPhone apps need daily attention. It's a wonder we have time to do anything else except service our social networks and communications devices.

So what's my point, I hear you ask. Well, the point is that if this is what it takes to service one individual's social media and digital presence, imagine what it takes to navigate a major brand or corporation through this morass of new communications opportunities.

Without sounding trite, that's why companies need progressive agencies to provide them with the strategic direction and wise counsel to sort the wheat out from the social media chaff and construct effective communications activity that works hard and produces return on investment.

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