It feels as though a page has recently turned regarding our national embrace of social media.  I have had quite a few friends turn to me for advice on getting channels started, how to do a podcast, things like that.
(As if I’m some kind of expert.  I’m just ahead of them in line by about five minutes.)
When you hear ads on AM radio telling listeners that “everybody needs a podcast and a blog” then you can be confident that what was once niche is now fully mainstream.
And if you are already on Instagram, LinkedIn, Twitter or any of the others, you may have noticed how marketers are slowly encroaching on the social traffic lanes, inserting their own messages on feeds, and generally clogging up the works like they always do.
What does it all portend?
For me it points out the need to strive to be relevant.  You hear that bit of advice all the time, but it can be ambiguous, like “build your brand.”  (What does that even mean?)
The best way I know to be relevant, in the short and long term, is not to chase the trending item of the hour, but to offer something that is actually needed and wanted by people.  
That usually adds up to HELP.
People need a lot of help these days.  More even than many of them are aware.
They need help achieving their goals, or even working out what their goals might be.
They need help with family and relationships.  Oh, yeah.
Judging from the droves of ads for medications, and billboards for the “healing” properties offered by weed, they need help understanding their health.
They need help staying above the depressing narrative of the media which paints life as a hopeless, unworthy and exhausting proposition.
Maybe more than anything, they need recognition for being live people, not just consumers, followers, a potpourri of chemicals, or possessions of the state.
I’ve learned from my own experience that whatever help one can offer can have far reaching effects.  The advice or assistance one offers might not even be accepted, yet the mere fact that you cared enough to offer can tip the scales.
And one of the dividends of helping others, quite apart from making valued friends, is that one becomes more proactive in one’s own life, and gains some deserved confidence and willingness to keep on going despite any setbacks.
That can come in handy.  And it will always be relevant.
Having a tough time?  Go help somebody.  See if that doesn’t help YOU.