Wednesday, November 10, 2010

Pet Peeves About Linkedin and Twitter

What some people do on both Linkedin and Twitter sometimes greatly irritate me. I wonder if they irritate a lot of other people too. 

Before I complain about Linkedin, let me complain about Twitter. I've complained before about Twitter here (60% of all Twitter users quit using Twitter within the first 30 days), here (about Twitter manipulating the "Trending" numbers) and here. Now, the most recent thing that irritates me about Twitter is all the junk mail and hard sell pitches; or should I call them "Hard Sell Tweets"? 

I got 1,000s of followers!

Way too many people are posting (in a dishonest and sneaky way) about something that  takes you to a site that asks that you sign up or buy something. 

The most absurd (and by far the most irritating) are the ones that say, "Get 1000's of new Twitter followers." Then when you look at that person's Twitter profile, you see that they only have two-hundred followers or so.

How can they say, "I got 1000's of new followers" etc., etc., blah, blah... When they only have a few hundred? At the link, it tells you that it costs, for example, $500 dollars for 200 "new friends." I thought only rock stars and people like that had paid friends (read: entourage). Why in the world would anyone want to pay for "friends"? What good is it to follow someone who you have zero interest in excepting to add a "1" to the numbers of followers you have?

If I have lots of followers, does that make me popular?

Anyway, that's a dishonest sales tactic, no?

That takes me to my next target; Linkedin. And speaking about dishonest sales tactics; twice in the last 3 weeks, I have been asked by someone to allow them into my network (or whatever it is called) only to have them soon reveal their true purpose: They aren't interested in connecting; they are interested in selling me something.

One girl wants to write a book on Japan and asked me to help out. At first I was flattered, then I realized that she didn't even bother to find out who I was and what I have done here in this country. All she wanted was somebody - anybody - to write something about Japan. What a load of BS.

I kind of felt like the last girl at the bar who gets taken home by a drunk guy who gets her in bed and the next morning wonders how she got into his apartment...

Please excuse my childish vanity here while I blow off steam... There are very few foreigners in Japan who have been here longer than I have. I only know of two. One guy is named Roger Marshall and the other guy is Bruce Jackson. Both gentlemen are the most upstanding - and outstanding - guys you could ever want to meet. I've been here since 1984 (the first time was 1979). Both these guys have been here since the 1970's! Plus, they are true Japanophiles: They speaks the language and understand - as best as any of us can - what the hell is going on here. 

I think that a guy like Roger or Bruce, if I wanted to approach them for sales, at least deserves enough respect from me that I do my due diligence and find out all I can about them before I bother them. Maybe I am conceited, but I hope some young sales person would offer me the same consideration.

Hell, it doesn't have to be Japan, either. Most good salesmen would do their homework before pitching...

So, I wasn't happy when I realized that this dumb girl hadn't even bothered to find out who I was before she asked for my help.

The next guy was from an investment company. He claimed that he wanted to connect... Then, within an hour, he was trying to sell me a sales meeting.

Once again, I gathered that he had no idea who I was or what I have done here in this country. He also claimed that "It would only take 20 minutes of my time to show me how I could make more money from my investments"!? Oh really? I'm over 53 years old and someone can come into my office, shake my hand, sit down and yak for a minute and tell me everything I need to know about taxes and investments? Wow! That's amazing. I wonder why people bother to go to university for 4 years or bother getting a license to become a financial advisor?

Of course, I told this guy, "No!" 

The next time I want to go and feel abused by a salesman I'll go back to the USA and look at used cars, thank you.

I have a good piece of advice for any sales person; before you bother to even make a sales pitch, at least take 10 minutes to try to find out some background information on the people or company that you are approaching.   

If I wanted to have people approaching me for sales like this (like Amway did in the early 1980's) then I would have joined the Mormon church.

One more event like this and I will "un-friend" a lot of people or cancel my Twitter or Linkedin account. Actually, I don't need either. If someone really wanted to get a hold of me, they could.

Just Google; "Mike" and "Tokyo" and there I am. 

Is it just me or are there others who feel the same way; why have Twitter and Linkedin become so much like a dumpy singles bar?


Ira Hata said...


I only add people I personally know, or who have worked with me or gone to the same schools, to my networks on Facebook and Linked In. Instead of adding people you've never met, you might consider simply rejecting everyone you don't know.

If you're looking to "network", then you're taking your chances when you add someone you've never met and deserve to be bombarded by salespeople. It's not the salesperson's fault. It's your fault for giving him/her the opportunity to pitch you.

Personally, I believe Facebook and Linked In is great. Both sites have helped me connect with many classmates, friends, lovers, and co-workers, I wouldn't have not had the opportunity to catch up with had they not existed. Used properly, these sites can be extremely helpful and I highly recommend them.


Ira Hata said...

I still don't understand Twitter or why anyone bothers to use it. I guess if you're an ego maniac and like to open your life up to everyone, it's a good way to bare yourself to the world. That being said, what do you gain from Twitting?

Someone needs to enlighten us to the merits of Twitter and Tweets...


mike in tokyo rogers said...

Hi Ira,

You turned me onto Facebook and I haven't had any trouble there. Thanks.

Honestly, if I had to rate Facebook versus Twitter then Facebook would score a 9 1/2 out of 10 and Twitter a 4 or so...

Anonymous said...

Mike, I had the same problem with a guy from the same financial company pull the same shit on me... Losers.

Mark said...

Twitter is for twits. Linkedin is worthless. Facebook can be fun though.

Ryan McMaken said...

Linkedin is helpful for me in that I can find colleagues I know in real life when they change jobs or get new contact info. I never do any actual "networking" on it. At my age (33) a lot of my colleagues still move around a lot so Linkedin can be helpful that way.

Twitter is my least favorite of all the social networking stuff. I have it connected to my facebook so I just use it as a one-stop way to post any updates to my blog or to link to new stuff I write. I never "network" with Twitter either. It's a one-way form of communication for me. Honestly, I've never known an influential or important colleague to EVER read Twitter. Some of them POST on twitter, but none of them read it.

Anonymous said...

The Argentum Wealth Management company called me also and tried to pitch their services to me! When I asked about their services, they couldn't even explain the services and instead just kept pushing me to go to a 40 minute financial review. Why would I want to go to a review if you can't even tell me about your services?!? Are these guys even licensed?

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