Friday, March 4, 2011

are you a social-networker??



Is that really a term? "Social-networker"? Well, for this post it is...because I want to know if I need to be one!




I have been thinking about Twitter and Facebook lately. About why the heck I have an account with both, but never...ever...seem to use them. In the past I would 'tweet' a thing or two, and I do use it once in a while to spread the love of an Etsy treasury I am featured in. But neither one of them ever really became a tool I use on a regular basis. 

I am curious how many of you out there do use Twitter or Facebook on a regular basis. 





If you do...what are you using them for?

Do you post on Facebook to stay in touch with old friends...and new friends? You know, just to let the everyone know what is going on in your life?

If you run a business like I do...do you have a Facebook page for that business?

I have been considering starting a Facebook page for Urban Farmgirl. I think that would be an especially useful tool during my 'show season'. Since I only sell at a show once a month, I could post pieces of my painted furniture for my customers to see before I even get to the shows. Right now, only about 1/5th of my business at the shows comes from pre-sales, and that has always been through photos I send in texts or emails. It might be nice to show what will be up-and-coming...that would save so much time and clients would be happy getting the pieces they want before they are sold out from under them. I get about 40-50 phone calls in the week before a show. Customers wanting to know if I am going to have a pair of twin beds, or a dining room set done in black, a tall bookcase, a pair of nightstands...things like that. Maybe a Facebook business page could ease the strain on both ends?

And how about Twitter...do you 'tweet'?...and if you do...is it promotional for your business or just to let the world know a play-by-play of your day?

I have to admit, there are a few of you I follow on Facebook and Twitter...and I *love* keeping up on your latest project or what is going on in your life! I just don't get why I can't bring myself to do the same. Hmmm...anyone got a leather couch I could lay on and talk out my issues with social-networking??





I think the main reason I have never used Facebook or Twitter is that it is just one more thing to do. One more thing to take time away from a life I try to live simply and be slightly 'disconnected' from my already 'over-connected' life. Honestly, I never really thought any of you may care what I am doing in my daily life...but maybe you do. Maybe I am very wrong. Maybe I AM missing something. I am not a girl to let opportunity pass me by, so hit me with it girls!

Do you want to see Urban Farmgirl have a Facebook page..a place to store my endless photos of design ideas, furniture make-overs and junk finds? Do you want to follow my crazy journey through life on Twitter?

Am I behind the times...am I missing something?

Lets hear it!




52 comments:

  1. Yes, Yes, and Yes! Would love to have you join us so that we can follow along with you! I think Twitter and Facebook are one of those things that you get out of what you put in. At one time I became OVER-involved in both and it drained me, but I have scaled back and feel like it really can help with promoting your business. Like everything else in life, I think it only works if there's a balance. Hope that helped.

    Rachel
    xoxo

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  2. I use facebook but not twitter. I just don't really understand twitter--maybe it is my age?! But facebook is very handy when I have eggs to sell or produce or a farmers/flea market. I think using it that way helps build community too because you are asking others to come/join you at your farm. we have some good local networking too of like mind people--so I acually feel more connect to my other urban farming friend and can support their farms too. You should do Facebook, it has been a good tool for us. Blessings! Caroline

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  3. I only use facebook for friends that I have had for years, family and local friends. Blogging is totally a different thing for me....the 2 don't meet. Although I will often use my blog post for the day as my facebook status. I am actually thinking of getting off of facebook. I find it too easy to not "really" connect to my local friends if we have "checked in" on facebook...seems the opposite of what I want to do...so maybe I will take a seat next to you on that couch! Have a great day!

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  4. i *love* to use twitter for a quick update on my posts and treasuries; facebook..uummm...not so much, i do have a page for my business where i give updates and such, i don't put much time into either really..i'm like you, i believe i'm connected way to much as it is and it is just another thing...
    would *love* to see a urban farmgirl fan page though...especially all your make over furniture finds!! :0)

    prairie xo
    kristin

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  5. As a faithful Etsy friend (with a *tarnished* ;o) reputation - Caryldee) I, for one, would consider it a privilege to be a FB *friend* and/or *tweet* with you! ;o)
    FB is my way of connecting with *friends* old and new...and it can be a way to *promote* a business or blog!
    Blessings, Mumsie

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  6. Yes, yes, yes, - the more pics the better. Also, Facebook is a great place for your "store page" -people that do not know about Etsy will see you there. FB is great for connecting with old friends and staying in touch. Be blessed :)

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  7. YES! I am on facebook. I haven't tweeted(?) yet. I would love for you to join me on Facebook.

    Come on over,
    Cherie @ http://dragonfliezcreationz.blogspot.com

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  8. I have a Facebook account to contact my daughter - but it's in a different name to my own as I don't want to be 'friended' by all and sundry! So I guess I'm NOT a social networker...LOL!

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  9. Oh my goodness, I think that if you own your own business, they are both a necessity! Especially if you blog! You will be amazed, if utilitzed consistently the difference it makes.

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  10. I believe every tool that is available can be used if you want!..Go for it I for one will follow on FB!

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  11. I can only keep up with blogging, and that's enough for me. If I had to do more than that I would never get any creating done, or volunteer work, or cleaning, or family time. For me, I couldn't do them all and do each one justice.

    I'm always behind the times on things like this, but I just don't get the advantage of being able to only post a line or two. I want something with meat in it, something I can relate to, something I can savor rather than 'hey I'm having a sale', or 'I just bought the best dress ever'. Give me somethin' I can chew on. While I do have a FB page, I hardly ever go there.

    Call me old-fashioned, or missing out, but I'll be sticking with a blog.

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  12. i use FB but for friends and family and some local markets i find that some friends play those games and i can't tolerate my page being all taken up with that stuff....yes they get hidden!! i guess for blogs i could open a new account but i am happy with just the blogs.

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  13. I do use FB but in a limited way. I'm not interested in ramping up my friends list, playing the games or knowing everything about everyone. Close friends are not my FB friends - they sit in my kitchen with me - same with family. Peripheral friends who I do care about but don't interact with regularly are my FB friends. A few businesses or organizations offer valuable information to me on FB.

    I do not use twitter. Not enough time in my day for that and I don't care if you just stubbed your toe! - Sorry - nothing personal but people share way too much and it's b-o-r-i-n-g.

    You answered your own question - it will take time away from your life. Is that what you want? I love that you don't post to your blog everyday - makes what you do share more special and I applaud you for that. Just because people are clamoring for every detail of your life does NOT mean that you owe it to them. Figure out what you want and be confident in your decision. It really is ok not to be a lemming.

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  14. Well, I had a facebook. Twice. I deleted mine back in '09 due to family members harassing me. About anything and everything. I started it back up and then I just deleted it in January as a new year's resolution. I'm still going strong! It is too much drama for me. Like, anything you post someone takes and gossips about it, or blows it up out of proportion. Even with something as small as "going to a movie with the hubby" turns into, "wow they have money for that in this economy?" or "gosh it must be nice"...I got too tired of it. Many other reasons affected my final decision. For me, FB was an addiction. Literally. Like I was a 'facebook-aholic'. I would tell my son to hush and go play just so I could mess around on FB. It got to the point to where I finally stepped back and looked at myself and realized I was neglecting house work, my family, and my own self because of a social network. But I give props to anyone who can have one and still make time for family. I just 'had' to be on it all the time. Had to check what my updates were like, if anyone had messaged me or anything. It just got bad. lol. So, I feel much better now. I have spent more time with my boys and hubby then I ever have. I feel free. :) But hey - I am not bashing facebookers at all. I just don't like it for me. I did twitter before too, then deleted. Found it pointless to 'tweet' an update all the time. That is all twitter is...is status updates. lol.

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  15. Love Facebook & Twitter! Would love to see you on Facebook!
    Ya'll can follow me on Twitter @daylap2010

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  16. HI Mary!
    This is a great post. I have wondered the same thing and will be drinking in all your comments!
    I do have a Facebook account and Twitter account. The only one I seem to really use is Facebook. I do more with my Olde Tyme Markeplace page than I do for my personal page and I can see that it really does help in marketing. Espicially cuz it's fa-ree!!!
    For some reason Twitter intimidates me! I know...go figure! I don't know if I "fit in" over there I s'pose.. which is silly.
    I do believe that as small businesses this is one of the answers we have been searching for....FREE ADVERTISING.....AWESOME EXPOSURE!
    I need to get over to Twitter and see what I need to do. Thanks Mary!
    Beth

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  17. I'm not yet to a point of selling anything in association with my blog, but I do have a Twitter feed on my sidebar, where I can update with teasers of what I'm working on, and in general post all those little asides that don't fit with my posts. The Facebook account I have, is a personal one, to keep up with family and friends.

    To me, if you have Twitter, and a blog, then there really isn't a whole lot of reason for the Facebook page because you do have the "statuses" through Twitter and the photos/tutorials through the blog - and the same in reverse if you have Facebook. Just my thoughts!

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  18. Yes! Please get on FB! It's how I keep up with the latest blog posts on my favorite blogs. I feel like you get to connect on a more personal level with FB or Twitter. I get most of my traffic from FB as well!

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  19. I only use the blog, no FB and Twitter, too much to keep updating, no work gets done.

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  20. nope no fb no twitter, I blog.
    I find it much more useful than the other sites to promote my business.
    I have friends on them and they just find it so time consuming, being a mother, wife and business woman I don't need to add more nonsense to my life load

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  21. I'm a Twitter newbie. Come join me. :)

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  22. Facebook - love it and it seems to be "where it's at" these days.

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  23. I just closed my FB account in January because it was consuming too much of my time. I was on there to keep in touch with family and friends. But I will be opening an etsy shop soon and then I will open an FB or twitter for my shop. Blogging is my favorite social network...I've been blogging for four years and hope that will be enough for promoting my etsy shop. I really miss the simple life...sitting on a front porch to chat rather than texting, etc.

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  24. No, I do not use either of them. I phone and email close family and friends. I have a fledgling blog. I started a Facebook account and then closed it. I had reservations about this. The whole "friend" thing seemed very superficial to me. I mean, after you have connected with that old high school friend, are you really going to want to maintain that? What if your boss wants to "friend" you? Awkward, awkward. People who you are not really friends with can forward photos to who knows where without your permission. The whole thing just seems like an invasion of privacy to me. Plus, do you know that even if you close your account, your information is not wiped out? (I was only on for two weeks though.) There was actually a class action lawsuit about this, but Facebook really did not change their policy. I wonder how many young people will someday have things from their indiscreet youth coming back to haunt them? I have seen people get "unfriended" by others in the workplace, and it's a huge deal to them.

    Twitter just seems like a lot of nonsense to me. Do I really want to know that someone went to Walmart to pick up a prescription? Call me a cynic, but I am thumbs down on this kind of social networking. Maybe for a business it's another story...

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  25. Well as a consumer and reader of blogs, I love it when shops and blogs have a facebook account.It's a free way to promote and network your business. I also enjoy when blog facebook pages share and post other blogs their readers may like too. It seems if you have facebook, twitter is really not needed since tweets are essentially the same as a facebook status. just my perspective...

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  26. As much as I love social media, I have a hard time keeping up with Facebook and Twitter (although I have accounts with both - I just know my life is too boring for regular status updates!). For our furniture business, I love our Facebook fan page. It's really easy to keep in touch with clients/potential clients by posting upcoming pieces and pieces we have for sale.

    So, I definitely say go for it for your business!

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  27. I use Facebook to check in on friends and see what they are doing, but I rarely if ever post. I like my blog better. It feels like hosting in my own home. That's also why I prefer visiting the blogs I follow rather than just using Google Reader. It feels like a cyber version of social visits, complete with calling cards (comments). I get to enjoy other homes and decor, music etc. But having said all that, using a Facebook page to showcase new pieces prior to sales sounds like a great plan if you don't want to host a stand alone website. And I agree with you about making sure that I am not so connected that I disconnect from my real life.

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  28. I don't do either of those! My blog and work is all I have the time to keep up with! Besides I think some people put to much info out there for everyone to know!
    Theresa
    aka:tot

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  29. I have a blog and I'm not really interested in facebook or twitter. Personally I barely have time to blog.. and I don't really want to know what people are doing every second of every day. If I want to speak to family or friends I'd rather pick up the phone.. maybe I'm just old fashioned but that's me. take care, Maryann

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  30. I am a big believer in FB. When I'm at an estate sale buying something, I'll post a pic with my cellphone--make sure you get a cellphone with an FB app. It's a great neworking tool for business. I've even sold stuff from pix on my FB page.

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  31. I'm on FB and Twitter. At times, I feel like I don't give it my all to get what I'm supposed to get from participating in social media, however...I'm a working mom...don't we always feel like we are behind with something? I can tell you this, though...I have made friends in my business (peers in my industry) and out of my business (people I simply enjoy exchanging remarks with) through Twitter that I couldn't have met otherwise. When I started, I said I would give it 6 months. It's now been a year and a half. It's probably not for everybody, but I enjoy it. Giving it a try could never hurt!

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  32. Ha! I sent you a tweet message to congratulate you on the Flea Market Style mention. : ) I have Twitter, and both personal and shop Facebook pages. My personal account only includes people I actually know or have developed friendships with through blogging & my local vintage world. I'm not interested in stacking my "friend" list. One of the nice things about social networking is that if you don't have the time, you don't have to read anything, you can support people you care about by just "being there" for them, and you can "like" something without having to come up with a speech. They've increased the options for Facebook business pages and I think they are a wonderful tool for companies of any size. Also, as far as networking is concerned, my various accounts attract different groups of followers. Twitter, for example, appears to attract more Urban professionals than SAHMs. I hope that helps! I'll definitely "Like" your fb page!

    : )

    Julie M.

    ps I think the enjoyment factor also depends on one's sense of humor. My friends are pretty funny and laughter...is definitely a good thing.

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  33. I have also thought about tweeting but I am just trying to keep up with facebook and the blog. I would follow you more on facebook than twitter.

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  34. I have a blog, but do not do facebook or twitter. I have a hard enough time finding balance in my life now. I just don't feel the need to add anything else.

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  35. I started out with FB. Loved it. Grew addicted to it. Then I started blogging. Loved that alot more. Grew really addicted to it - and still am. lol! Not FBing as much anymore. Like many other gals, I get sick of reading about everyone whining about things, blowing things out of proportion, blah blah blah. I even had a friend 'defriend' me because I wasn't FBing her enough!

    For me, blogging is more fulfilling, more creative, and more inspiring. And my blog friends are so supportive, encouraging, and loving! I still use FB once a week or so for a few minutes, but there's just too much drama there for me...It just may be time to simplify my life a little more. :)

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  36. I am so glad you brought this issue up. I too am torn between feeling guilty for spending too much time on the computer and living life. I so appreciate being able to read all the comments you received. What is really amazing to me, is how many people are trying to simplify,eat at the dinner table, garden, and connect with community. It makes me feel like the world is really up for a change!

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  37. I am on FB for friends, family .... share pictures and daily goings on. Not sure how interesting I am! You can be my friend! Twitter I know nada about. Might be interested since I am a talker. Boring, but a talker!

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  38. My junk partners and I have had a blog for a couple years now. A few of us have also had personal FB profiles as well...which have been for friends and relatives. I have found FB to be a nice way to "catch up" with those friends and relatives I don't get to see often, or hardly at all. Very recently I created a Facebook Business Page from the account setting on my personal FB profile. Once set up, it's acts as it's own page and followers to the business page do not necesarily have access to my personal page. I've added my sale partner as an administrator also and so far we use the page as a resource for sale and contact info, and to link our blog posts. The difference between the blog and the FB business page, in my opinion, is that a blog post requires alot of thought, preparation, photos, etc and are a bit of an artistic expression of your work. The FB page can do that also but for us, is more of a place to quickly link the blog post we already put the time into, and also a place for a quick tidbit, comment, or question for the followers of the page. All is personal preference but the FB page doesn't HAVE to consume as much time as a blog requires. And my rule of thumb...life comes first...social networking should be kept at an enjoyable level, not a stressful one!! Enjoy whatever you decide!!

    Missy-JunkFest

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  39. I didn't read all the comments so someone may have already posted this, but if you hesitation is because of the time issue of updating so many different accounts then you should look into a program like tweet deck. It will update your blog, your facebook and your twitter all at once so you dont have to update them indivually. I use all 3 for my business and the great thing about fb and twitter is that people who like you will share your links on their own fb and twitter pages and you can gain so many new clients this way. I definitely say start utilizing it! Plus, I love following all my favorite business on fb too. It's any easy way to keep up with their sales or new products.
    Give it a try!!

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  40. I agree with Alima... it is a fast way to go viral. I guess it depends on what you are looking for and it seems like it depends a lot on who you "friend". I love my facebook account because it is a super easy way to organize and share info... and like she said, if you have supportive people, you can reach an audience that you might not otherwise. For example, my friends are crazy circus artist types and my mother works in a law office. If she passes on my posts and links to my blog etc, they go out to a group I wouldn't connect with on my own. I have never had any of the issues I read in these other comments, gossip and such. My group is uber supportive. I am careful about who I connect with, but also open to new friendships.

    I got on FB because I was at home with my son and missing my social life... it turned into a way to figure out what social events were worth attending, and a way to instantly connect on certain issues. Need a sitter? Post it and get a near immediate response. Feeling crappy because he has the flu? It's nice to get the comments that people leave for you (just like if feels good to get comments on your blog, but it is a whole lot easier for them to post on FB AND you don't have to go and tell your blog readers every single little thing that is going on in your life)... I personally think it is a nice blend of personal and business...

    I don't Tweet, just haven't bothered getting on board, but have heard very positive things from people who use it for their business. My take on it is that you are more likely to close a sale if people feel a personal connection to you, so while a trip to get a perscription may be boring to many, it also reminds them that you are a living breathing person and that is what drives small business... the connection to the people behind the name.

    Just my thoughts. Either way, I think you do get out what you put in...

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  41. This is certainly a thought-provoking subject. I'm on FB but have little time for it due to constant busy schedules. Tweeting? I have a Twitter account but maybe I haven't got the gist of it yet. Blogging I love! Social networking is a great tool for promoting business. I have a book, Phantom Seven, that will be published in a couple of months and try to keep up with marketing it as well as so much else. How does one keep up? LOL! Definitely, family is first. Without them, we would be lonely creatures. :) I've enjoyed reading all the different comments here. Oh, yes, almost forgot...I enjoy your blog so much that I included you in my list of Stylish Blogger Awards if you are interested.

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  42. Hallo! If you run a business I think you have to engage with social media...
    Business aside, I personally use fb to keep in touch with overseas relatives and friends, to feel part of their every day life by remarking on their status updates and having them respond back...and the sharing of photos especially.

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  43. I use Facebook but Twitter is a Bridge too Far. I have to be strong about not letting it turn into an obligation - I know we use it for business, but it becomes very Red Shoes if it is forced (a horrible fairy tale BTW)

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  44. i think a business FB page would be great! sounds like it would be a useful tool for you in showcasing furniture for upcoming shows. i would definitely follow! I am not a fan of Twitter and kind of wish it would just go away...hahaha ;)
    Have fun, whatever you decide!

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  45. Hi Mary! I bet your business would really benefit from a FB page....and probably save you quite a bit of that time you spend on the phone with your customers. Twitter? I still don't get that one!

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  46. Hi there! I highly recommend creating a FB biz page in conjunction with your blog! You can cross link your posts on both to save time. FB provides FREE viral marketing opportunities that you just can't get elsewhere! I've been working with a friend who's revitalized her antiques biz via FB to unbelievable success and I just created a blog/website for her so that she can send her FB visitors to the blog for details about her barn sales, etc. Twitter is also great once you figure it out and is often a way of marketing to a different customer segment but it is still very effective. Good luck! Diane T.

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  47. I started a Facebook page and recently a Twitter page for The Creole Cottage (@UpcycleNOLA for those on Twitter). I find it useful for customers who are into social media. It does not hurt. Yes it does require a little more time, but there are applications you can use (i.e. HootSuite) to manage your posts to both accounts at once....that way you don't have to post a message on Facebook and then post a message on Twitter.

    The advantage is that you are submitting information to users and not relying on them to come to you for the info. I have a Twitter and FB app on my phone and when I open it I see the "news" from all the people I follow/like in what I consider a central spot. I don't have to remember to go to one blog, go to another, and so on. Their news just pops up on my screen.

    For the business, I'm able to archive past items we have sold so people can get an idea of what our style is and what we've done in the past. I also am able to show case current items for sale and items that will be coming in. Just helps keep customers informed.

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  48. I'm sort of like you...I finally got on FB for my etsy shop....haven't given in to Twitter yet. I sort of wish it would go away :) :) (Big smiles)

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  49. I use FB to stay in touch and exchange photos with my kids (I'm in Cali, one's in South Korea, one's in Texas, one's down the street)but a couple of friends from long ago found me & now we use it to catch and keep up. If I had a business I would definitely use it, helps get your message out to many people quickly. I don't tweet. I tried it for awhile but just isn't my thing. Social networking is the way to go as a business, quick, free advertising that more and more people are signing up for daily.

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  50. Our Grandkids dragged us into the 21st Century recently to use Blogs, Face Book and other Tech venues we'd been avoiding... and I'm so glad they did, it has turned up old Friends that we can now renew contact with... and allowed us to make new Friends. For a biz I would think it is an excellent way to showcase your work to an audience that might not otherwise get to experience it.

    Dawn... The Bohemian

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  51. This statement right here: "One more thing to take time away from a life I try to live simply and be slightly 'disconnected' from my already 'over-connected' life." Says it all for me. This is exactly how I feel about it. I feel that if I really wanted to connect with peeps in my past ie, grade school, first loves, etc. well they'd still be in my life and I never would have let them out in the first place..ha! Rude I know..but I don't like to hassle with these accounts, but that's just me. :)

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  52. i'm on twitter but not facebook i keep throwing that one around but just haven't taken the jump. i think you'd do great if you were on both! i like twitter nothing to maintain, quick and easy!! good luck! susan

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