17 February 2012
So, someone tweeted this to me on my Twitter account the other day and it did ruffle me a little bit. I think the author is trying to distinguish between facebook and Twitter as tools but the idea that you should discard the use of facebook altogether is a fallacy.
Facebook provides a physical base in the somewhat extra-physical world of the internet and allows me to communicate in a very personal way with possible customers. Something twitter does not do directly. Twitter is a good sales tool because you project information on to people. This isn't on a one to one basis like what I get out of Facebook.
I care about my customers and try to make my service bend to their needs as much as possible. I'd rather interact with them on a one to one level rather than bombard hundreds with a very generic offer of sale. I know there is more to both as businesses tools but I wanted to make this paragraph as narrow minded as this guys entire article. Sorry, I didn't mean to rant that far. That part of this post was only meant for one or two lines... now to what I was going to talk about. It can be a little strange being 25 year old, single, wedding photographer. Out of the 100 or so weddings I've photographed I can state that the majority involve couples who are older than me or of similar age. They're rarely younger.
But I'm currently at the stage in my life where old school friends are settling down and beginning their lives with someone new....and I'm not (but that's an entirely different story :). I moved away from my home town some 7 years ago - many others do as well, I'm sure. This meant I had less or lost contact with many people from my past and, like most people, it takes some sort of event to being everyone back together.
Being at the age I am, a lot of these are weddings. In the past 2 years or so I've been hired by some old friends to cover their weddings. Some of them I knew very well at school, some not so much, but with all of them I've hung around with on the playing fields or in last period maths.
Each one has been a dream to shoot - coupled with a spicy nostalgia kicker. It's amazing meeting up with these old friends and, of course, many of the guests who I also know. It's distracting, but it's great to share our experiences and see how everyone has developed from when we were young.
I wonder how often this happened to wedding photographers in the past. Especially one's who moved away from their origins. How often were they tracked down by friends of friends to shoot their old school buddies? This is why the Facebook article ruffled me a bit. I'm almost certain that without Facebook NONE of these couples would have gotten in touch. Facebook has become this beautiful tool for keeping in touch and all of the old school friends contacted me through a Facebook message to book their wedding. I'm so pleased they did because it opened me up to an experience 'old time' photographers might not have gained. I've managed to keep track of good friends I once had who grew apart for whatever reason.
I don't believe Facebook is this tool that keeps people who shouldn't keep in touch talking. It unites us globally with so many people who previously influenced our lives and allows us to give back what we can to them through our experiences and our developments. I hope that what my development, as a wedding photographer, has given them memories to cherish and their experiences and advice has enriched my life and made me feel quite humble. I don't think twitter would have done this.