Currently, I’m ten days away from my two monthiversary without social media. (If you’re new to this site, QuittingSocialMedia.com, I welcome you to read the About page to learn more about this blog.) So far this experience has presented interesting obstacles which I’ve noted in my One Month Without Social Media Report. As I approach my two monthiversary for abstaining from social media, I feel compelled to point out the benefits of these social platforms in today’s modern, technology-driven world.
In this article I’ll be going over three reasons why social media is actually good. To be more specific, I’ll be touching on the benefits of Facebook, Instagram, and Twitter. These platforms can help businesses and even the average Joe thrive. The underlying theme in this post is that social media can actually be a useful tool if you use it exactly as that, a tool.
#1 Facebook Marketplace is way better at selling secondhand items faster
In the first month abstaining from social media, I did some decluttering around my house. I’ll usually do this whenever I notice something hasn’t been used in six months or so. This keeps my space neat and tidy, plus I get some pocket money in exchange. Anyway, before I deactivated all my social accounts, Facebook Marketplace was my go-to site to sell my secondhand items.
Facebook Marketplace has quite a few seriously beneficial realities to it. For one, it’s SUPER easy to use. All I’d have to do to sell an item is take a few decent pictures, upload them to the Marketplace, add a description and offer price. After that, just click publish and in minutes, start to finish, your lightly classical guitar is up for sale.
Since I’m taking a leave of absence from Facebook, I’ve had to figure out an alternative option to selling my secondhand stuff. This led me to Craigslist.
Selling on Craigslist is meh…
While Craigslist gets your items online and for sale, the platform isn’t quite as good as Facebook Marketplace.
I’ve already mentioned Facebook Marketplace’s ease-of-use. Another benefit is that it has more reliable users. I say this having used both. My experience is that inquiries from Craigslist are more likely to fall through than inquiries from Facebook Marketplace.
As a seller, it’s super frustrating to put time into answering questions about whatever you’re selling (from multiple people) and then end up getting ghosted. This happens a lot on Craigslist and I’m not sure why. As a longtime Craigslist seller, I can say that this has kind of always been a thing. And since I know what selling on Facebook is like, this whole Craigslist selling experience has gotten to be a bit annoying. Facebook Marketplace has more reliable buyers, that in itself is a huge win for Facebook.
On Facebook, buyers are also easy to verify if they are real or fake since people use their personal profiles to engage in a sale. It’s a comfort that you feel present if you decide to meet up at a public place to do the exchange. If you don’t know what I mean, try meeting up with someone on Craigslist.
Another serious upside to selling on Facebook is that inquiries would come in faster. This means you can sell your stuff faster, which means you can get cash faster. Badah-bing, badah-boom.
At this point in time, not even two months into leaving social media, I feel like I might reactivate my Facebook just to use Marketplace as an easy selling resource. At the end of the year challenge of course.
#2 It’s A Great Tool for Any Business to Communicate, Market, and Serve Their Audience
Let’s say you’re a small start-up, ideally you’ll want to keep your overhead operational costs down as much as possible. One of the upsides for having a Facebook account is that it allows business owners to have a website (a Facebook page, not just a regular account) for free. Well, in exchange for your data.
On top of it being free, Facebook provides a modern/responsive user interface. Businesses without the means to hire a web team can greatly benefit from Facebook’s built-in modern/responsive and familiar layout.
Another useful feature Facebook offers is an avenue for a business to market their products and communicate with their audience. This makes e-commerce virtually accessible to anyone who has the guts to do business. These folks wouldn’t have to pay for a Shopify or have to figure out how to use e-commerce in WordPress, etc.
#3 Social Media Is a Great Way to Organically Grow Audiences via Hashtagging
I have personally benefitted from using hashtags on social media on more than one occasion.
If you’re a newb web developer and are on Twitter, chances are you’ve stumbled across the popular #100DaysOfCode challenge. To summarize, the #100DaysOfCode challenge is targeted at new developers who want to participate in an encouraging community while learning how to code. Basically, you work on learning a coding concept, do some practice, and post your progress with the hashtag #100DaysOfCode. From there, you search the hashtag and comment on others you find interesting and want to support. This simple procedure has created a massive, supportive network. I’ve also seen seasoned developers join as they continue to learn and be a part of the group.
By participating in this challenge, I’ve become a better developer, communicator, and grew my network of tech nerds.
You can use social media hashtags to grow your network.
Another useful way to use hashtags is to #InsertMarketingHere. I found this to be the most useful on Instagram. Businesses can post an interesting picture with a caption and add a relevant hashtag to be seen in a like-minded community. The search feature allows you to lurk at all the posts using that hashtag and down the rabbit-hole we go.
Businesses and regular users use this feature all the time for all sorts of reasons. You could literally build a brand just off of Facebook, Instagram, or Twitter with hashtags.
Social Media Is Actually Good for a Lot of Things … If You Use It as a Tool
If it wasn’t obvious, I’ve purposefully centered this article around business concepts because I don’t yet find having 600+ Facebook friends and 600+ Instagram followers useful on a personal level. But social media does have tremendous potential to be all sorts of things and it’s totally up to the user to decide on what that means.
As a tool, you can use it to sell your old stuff and make a few extra bucks. You can use it as a website for your company, where it’s easily accessible, free and fast to make. Or you could grow your professional network and increase your chances at new job opportunities.
For now, I believe these are three positives actually make social media good.
This page was updated 11/7/2019.
About the Author
Hi there, I’m Connor — I’m the author of this website and millennial guinea pig to a yearlong social media cleanse. From September 17th, 2019 to September 17th 2020, I will be experimenting and blogging about what life is like without social media. This site will be periodically edited and updated as the experiment continues. If you’d like to read more head over to the About page.