I am a bit sluggish getting up the social media learning curve.
I have the blog that you are reading now, and the website where it resides. I have a personal Facebook page, plus another for my musical alter ago; I have a Twitter account (that I use infrequently) and a Pinterest account (on which I never post; but Pinterest turns out to be a good way to research potential hairstyles).
And of course I have a YouTube channel for posting my music videos. I posted a new music video this week, in fact! So far, it has 197 views.
197 is a pretty insignificant number in social media terms. 5,000 hits is considered to be barely making a dent. 100,000 is the absolute minimum to be considered "viral." Real social media splashes number in the millions.
Although I want to point out that if I were counting in Base 3, 197 would be 21,022. Which is way more, even though it’s the same.
According to the expert you choose, there are five, six, twenty-five, ten or eight steps to achieving social media success. All agree that Step #3, #2, #19, #6, or #4 is to spend nearly as much time sharing other people's content as creating your own: re-tweeting, re-posting, and so forth. I am not so good at that. I scrounge together what time I can to write the blog or make the videos or whatever, and then I go off to do something else, like eating toast, or putting the laundry in the dryer, or even, on an off day, my job.
Lately we have been hearing a lot of speculation about how social media is contributing to unprecendented dissension in American life. Our social media feeds, so the narrative goes, push us toward content that reinforces the beliefs to which we are already predisposed, driving us further and further into our own self-reinforcing perceptual bubbles.
So I choose to see my relative lack of success on social media as a contribution to greater American civility. By not re-tweeting, re-posting or otherwise having any impact at all on pretty much anybody, I am helping to prevent the tunnel vision that is apparently our most pressing social scourge. I am a true American hero.
Although it is not completely the case that I have failed to redirect my modest number of listeners/followers to other items of interest! This morning I visited my YouTube channel:
A few things of note here. First, my YouTube channel apparently has twelve (12) subscribers! Twelve is an exciting number because it is larger than the number of people in my immediate family. Also because in Base 3 it is 110, which is way more even though it is the same.
Also, I am pleased to see that the 197 views collected by my latest, Ironing, is more views that has been earned by Diagnosis, my previous video, which only has 142. Amazing how my impact has grown in just a few short months!
But scrolling down a bit, I find this:
I have apparently "LIKED" this video of a Cat Terrorized by Popcorn, even though I never saw it before finding it on this morning's YouTube channel exploration. I have inadvertently recommended this video to all 110 (Base 3) of my Subscribers! And these twelve people must have done a pretty good job selling it to their friends in turn, because this thing has over 11 million views (I think YouTube reports in Base 10). Not bad, considering the cat doesn't even write his own lyrics!
Look. To be honest, there’s a part of me that’s delighted that as many as 197 people have bothered to listen to a song I wrote. Besides, this far into middle age, I am pretty much at peace with where my life has taken me thus far. I am well aware that my value as a human being is not measured by how many hits I get on YouTube.
My value as a human being is measured by how much money I make.
And that number, I must tell you, looks pretty impressive in Base 3.