I was having a weird moment in the middle of scrolling through my Facebook feed. More than 300 connections/friends, many of whom I've come to know primarily online. In most cases, our relationship started in person, but I do have a few friends I have never met IRL (in real life).
So then I thought about branding (because that's how my brain is wired!), and the concept that each of these connections now has its own brand story. Some are outdoorsy, some foodies, some "addicted" to caffeine and/or wine, while others clearly need both as I can count on them to be angry - ha. Of course nearly all my connections love animals, and if I had to draw the pie chart, dogs and horses are the biggest pieces.
Consciously or not, we have all developed and nurtured an online brand that may or may not reflect the in-person version. I wondered how many do this intentionally - only posting about positive things or worrying about how an update is perceived. I have some friends who state they "don't get the point," but post anyway, and others who see it as a community in an age where we are all existing behind screens.
On one hand, we are in danger of becoming characters in a virtual show on the social channel where people may react with a Like, Heart, Wow, Angry or Sad emoji, but then scroll on through to to next post without the true emotion sinking in; without real connection. On the other hand, we are able to keep in touch with high school friends or long lost colleagues who otherwise might be lost to time and life. I love that part; I like that there are that many people I wish I could have a glass of wine with at any given moment.
As we go through your social feeds this week let's all think about a few things: 1) are we being the person we aspire to be? Are we kind, supportive, loving, authentic ... ? 2) are we making real connections and reaching out when needed? 3) be conscious about the "brand you" that's going into the world and lead with love.