What is SPAM?

SAPMTo a previous post, MaxS commented that my reaction to SPAM was different than his and particularly to that of teenagers and young adults (Millennials).

SPAM is in the eye of the beholder. The point of the other article is not whether we should consider one thing or another SPAM based on frequency or other metrics, but instead that we should pay attention to how our perceptions of the source color our assessment.

There is a double standard that we take for granted. We classify companies and people of authority differently in our minds than we do friends. The type of interactions we expect are completely different.

Regardless of the generation if someone radically changes the interaction context on us (turning mentoring or friendship into marketing) then we are going to view that as betrayal of our perception of what we have signed up for. I give you permission to be my friend, not sell me a car.

In the end while we may each have different ideas of what constitutes SPAM it all comes down to unwanted or inappropriate interactions as colored by our perception of the source of those interactions. Appropriate interactions build trust and “Social Capital”, inappropriate ones tear it down.

1 thought on “What is SPAM?

  1. Marty.

    Good meeting you at Mark’s holiday party and nice couple of articles you’ve got here.

    It’s interesting as I have a friend who’s currently using Facebook (among other things) primarily as an attempt to get new business (he’s in marketing), and secondly to get dates. Ha.

    Basically he’s constantly updating how busy he is and all the work that’s going on. Trouble is that I know him personally, I know his agenda, and I know the successes are somewhat limited at this point (not to say that his self-marketing couldn’t pay off eventually… maybe it will, maybe not).

    The amount of “updates” is frequent (1 to 5 a day), and they just FEEL like promotions. The veil isn’t hard to see-through in my opinion.

    But I think it’s slight smell of desperation that comes through when one uses what’s supposed to be a social tool for commercial gain, no matter how subtle the message may be. So, do you think it could be that desperation we sense as recipients that gives us the SPAM-vibes, or what?

    Is there an appropriate way to pitch ourselves on social-networking sites? Has anyone done it successfully? Or should it be done at all?

    As someone who occasionally needs to pitch himself (something I hate doing), it’s a set of questions I face with each project I complete.

    Would love to hear thoughts.

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