by Lara We don't all find our way to social media in the same way or for the same reasons. I like to think social media was invented for people like me, or maybe it was BY people like me.
I've been online since... before the internet. I used to dial in to BBSes (Bulletin Board Systems) via modem to chat with other equally geeky people. I was online dating in 1993. I've still got my icq number memorized (anyone else remember the good ol' "uh oh" days?) and I started my first blog in 2006. I logged in to twitter for the first time in 2007 (I think) but it took me until 2009 to REALLY get involved there and I think I could only find 3-4 people I knew on Facebook when I first created my account. Living my life online has always come quite naturally to me - I love it here.
Brie came to the game a bit later. Stumbling upon a giveaway blog one day in early 2009, she entered to win an Ergo baby carrier. (She lost) Realizing that she could get extra entries in giveaways if she had a blog of her own, she surprised herself and started Capital Mom. Even more surprising was how much she loved blogging. It was cheap therapy as she muddled through her days at home with a baby and two year old. It also provided her with a community of other mothers who were muddling through their days just like she was. A reluctant blogger writing anonymously eventually became a blogging advocate who tries to convince every mother she knows to start her own blog as a sanity savor and record of her life.
True to her skeptical nature, Brie tried resisting Twitter. Afraid that she wouldn't understand it, but worrying about all the fun she was missing, she finally joined in August 2009. Many tweets about potty training, children not listening to her entirely reasonable requests and her trips to the park followed. For some reason people found them interesting and started to follow her back. Brie may be a late adopter, but once she joins, she's in.
Social media has a million and one uses. For business, for promotional purposes and for building friendships, to name but a few. For new parents it can be an amazing way to find support and community in what can be a lonely, discouraging and isolating time. For parents with kids of any age it can be a great way of feeling less alone when your kids does (insert thing you don't want them to do here).
Brie and I found each other through social media. We read each other's blogs and followed each other on Twitter until we met at a tweetup (twitter speak for a meetup). Within months, we were launching Kids in the Capital.
We believe social media has made an enormous difference in our parenting experience and we know there are many others out there who might be interested in taking part but would never know where to start. As a result, we've decided to start a new series on Kids in the Capital called Social Media Mondays. We plan to walk you through Twitter, blogs, vlogs, etc - including the what, the how and the WHY.
We hope you'll follow along and if you haven't already, try out some of what we suggest. Let us know what you most want to hear about, because this is all about helping you to join the world of social media. And if you are already a part of the social media world, we'd love to hear what a difference it's made for you, the experiences you've had because of it, and what you think we should make sure to include!