A Dinosaur and Social Media!!!


I’m from the old school, social networks meant playing in the street with friends and all going in when it got dark. We were tired because we had used plenty of energy. There weren’t many obese children around.

When I was first teaching in the 70’s, we read stories and found information in books, got involved in lots of projects and enjoyed writing letters and cards to friends and family.

At home we got a telephone, the first in our street and I was 14 years old!

In the 80’s I returned to teaching.  We had 2 BBC computers which were shared throughout the junior school. A small selection of really good programs entertained the children on the odd occasion they got chance to have a turn and even then they usually had to work in pairs. As you can imagine it took a long time.

The internet was certainly very flaky at first and more often than not went down, just when you least expected it to.

Jump forward to 2016 and now we expect everything to be instant, children as young as 8 have mobile phones and most 1 and 2 year olds can handle a tablet!

And even a dinosaur like me has moved on - so what do I like and what do I use?

Top of my list has to be Pinterest. This can be addictive but also so useful. It’s like having a giant scrapbook but everything is nicely organised and so easy to find, and more importantly, it doesn’t fall to pieces so you don’t lose things!

I use it to find ideas for projects I am really interested in. This could be anything from finding fun activities to do with the grandchildren, to ideas for the home, interesting and yummy recipes and fabulous craft ideas including great tutorials for people like me who are learning to sew!

It’s free to use and now I’ve downloaded it to my phone, it keeps me busy while travelling out and about on public transport.

So if you haven’t used it, what do you do?

Collect ideas, create boards where you can pin your ideas or even follow a board. It’s all great fun as there are no currently annoying adverts, so I really hope it stays that way. It’s really easy to set up an account and get pinning, why don’t you give it a try www.pinterest.co.uk.

Did you know? According to a recent report in http://www.webpronews.com/promoted-pins-2016-04/, the market for pinners in the UK has grown by 50% over the past year. Also more than 75% of the Pins promoted to Pinterest come from businesses, so obviously a great tool for them too.

Twitter is my 2nd choice. I also have this app on my phone and I use it on the go. I follow a wide range of people/groups/companies, mainly around the following subjects- which are important to me:

  • Education
  • Current Affairs
  • Crafts
  • Travel news
  • Campaigns
  • Local events

I’m not yet brilliant at Twitter and my world mainly consists of retweeting bits of news I think are important or relevant.  However when stuck on a train that hasn’t moved for ages - I can usually find why by checking their company tweets  on Twitter. It certainly saves me getting frustrated and keeps me informed, often better than the guard on the train!

Of course it’s great for businesses too.

To get the best out of Twitter:

  • Create a profile, add a photo, it doesn’t have to be of you!  Say a bit about yourself or your company- this gives other people a reason to follow you.
  • Tweet regularly, either your own content, retweet content from others e.g. interesting news articles etc. If you write blogs, don’t forget to tweet them!
  • Tweet popular items from Pinterest or Google +.
  • Create lists and see if you can get on other’s lists.
  • Try and make your tweets visual and add photos/images/videos/gifs where possible.
  • Follow and list people.
  • Use ‘who to follow’ and ‘Discover’ tools on Twitter to find more followers.
  • Look at who your favourite followers are following and follow them too.
  • Use hashtags and don’t forget to provide links to your Twitter profile.

Of course, I am a bit of a dinosaur but if you need any advice on using Twitter, you could always ask us for help- we do have a few experts in the team!

Facebook is falling fast in the popularity stakes for me. It can be aggravating and intrusive. I get annoyed that I respond so quickly to pop ups on my phone informing me I have memories to look back on or someone has posted something.

On a positive side I enjoy sharing in family photos and events. Also I follow some amazing fabric related and sewing groups. These are full of wonderful people who are so helpful and willing to share their expertise and ideas. If is wasn’t for these I would be de-activating my account and am so sorely tempted at times ..... but then... what if I miss something important.... Maybe I’ll stick with it for the moment.