Imagining a Recession Without Social Media…

We all know – and are hopefully mildly relieved by the fact – that every some odd years the economy goes down the toilet for a little while. Ah, the wonder of cyclical economics.

But what is interesting to me about this recession is that there are now more and more tools available for individuals to deal with the economic situation in much more positive, if not productive ways.

What I mean is that individuals (this is an idea I’ve obviously been harping on for a while now) are able to market themselves much more effectively with social networks and other web 2.0 communication platforms. We are more connected than ever before: to potential employers, support networks, even to potential buyers of our personal goods (homes, ebay-worthy items, etc.) that can net us some quick cash. In short, we can weather the storm, if not profit by it, in ways we could not have imagined in the 1930s or even in the slowdowns in more recent memory.

Seriously, nowadays if you lose your job, you go directly to your laptop and start cranking out a revised resume and performing exhaustive web searches on networks like Monster, the Ladders, LinkedIn and even Craigslist. Your ability to cast a wider net is exponentially greater than it was even a decade ago. Even leveraging Twitter to blast out a “hire me” beacon has worked for some. And of course – getting in touch with everyone you know that might be able to hire you in your Facebook network can’t hurt either.

On the flipside, for those trying to sell in this economy to the individuals that are feeling the pain – the ability to leverage sales 2.0 concepts in both B2B and B2C settings makes the job a little easier. In a dialog-based sales environment – being able to communicate that you truly understand the present economy and the pressures it places on buyers is a benefit. Being able to work through sales in an iterative process, not just throwing out marketing campaigns and taking orders, helps buyers to see that you’re truly a customer-centric organization – one that will be rewarded with loyal customers once the economic woes end.

So, while we can all agree that recessions suck – at least we are much better equipped to deal with the downturns in ways we could not have imagined only a few years ago.

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