I’ve had my “A Dad’s Point-of-View” Facebook page for about a year. I LOVE IT. It’s literally been a life-changer for me. It’s named after my column and radio show: “A Dad’s Point-of-View.” As of today (2/27/11), it has just shy of 3,500 members, as I like to call them.
Originally, Facebook pages called those who joined pages “fans,” but they changed it to a less clear designation later. Now, instead of becoming a “fan” of a Facebook page, which was the original option, you choose to “like” a page — does that make you a “liker?” Again, I prefer “member,” especially for my page where “fan” would be insulting given that we’re all on the same page, as parents.
So, why do I love it so much? It’s a lot of work. It is like a pet that wants and needs constant attention. It doesn’t always give me “love” or even feedback. These things are true but the good I get from the page has changed my life and made me a better person, a better dad, a better husband.
Why? Because the more you interact with the world, the more you learn, the more you realize you are not alone, the more your problems seem small in comparison to others who struggle with far greater ones.
In the case of the “A Dad’s Point-of-View” page, our members come from everywhere, it seems. The 3,500 or so members of my page represent the world and are incredible. Look at this screen-shot, taken directly from the “Insights” statistics/date (on 2/27/11) that are available to Facebook Page administrators:
One of the specific examples of how this page has been so impactful (my word) on my life is meeting “The Africa Zebras,” a group of girls in a small school in Agona Swedru, Ghana (Africa). I have interacted, via Facebook chat, with not only several of the girls but also the leader of the school, their Pastor. Read more about this in the stories I have written about them – “A Story of Giving — You ALWAYS Get More When You Give” and “Help Out the ‘Africa Zebras’ (Kids) With Books, Games, Stuffed Animals, and More PLEASE!”
I just chatted with “Jesse” on Facebook a few days ago. She’s 12-years-old. To know people like her, her siblings, and her Father is to know the bigger world and that is what my Facebook Page has done for me.
As the demographics show, the “A Dad’s Point-of-View” Facebook page has members from countries and cities worldwide, and with multiple languages spoken by our members.
Another statistic that Facebook provides its administrators (the creators of the Page) shows the age and gender breakdown:
The above “Demographics” were illuminating for me as I had assumed my majority audience was women. Yes, I’m a man and Yes, I’m a dad, but my assumption and, frankly, maybe sexist bias was that more women were interested in the issues I cover. I was so happily surprised that, in fact, more men “like” my page than women. I want both, but these statistics help me in my writing, knowing my “audience,” understanding who they are, and where they come from. I love this!
As the “A Dad’s Point-of-View” page developed, I learned what worked well and what didn’t, and have developed and follow a relatively strict format for my twice daily posts (possibly just one a day on weekends). We have four “Theme Days:”
• Music Monday – I usually “honor” the birthday of a well-known singer, often highlighting artists that I particularly like and/or respect. I accompany each of the two “Music Monday” posts with links to YouTube or other videos of that artist performing a song of my choosing.
• Wednesday Words – My two posts on “Wednesday Words” are devoted to quotations about parenting, relationships, life, and more, that I find and collect expressly for this purpose.
• Friday Funnies – I post cartoons that I find and also collect expressly for this purpose. Their theme is usually related to the themes in my writing.
• Faith Sunday – This is the day when I ask myself and everyone, “What are you doing to repair the world?” and I’ll post something that relates to “faith” or “religion.” I might encourage members to participate in something such as sending books to “The Africa Zebras” or other ideas. This is my favorite “Theme Day” as I know what we do on these days is make each other think and maybe do some good.
The other days of the week tend to include posts about my writing and radio show, news items, links to other related items or subjects, personal reflections such as posting photos when I’m on vacation, etc.
On the latter subject, I was posting regular photos from a recent trip to Southeast Asia in which what I saw was so relevant to all parents. I showed the poverty prevalent in many of the places I visited and I also just shared some of the wonders I saw. Here’s a wonderful sample of one I shared – that’s a refrigerator on the back of that motor-scooter!
The “A Dad’s Point-of-View” page is my outlet to express daily thought and to have dialogue with parents from almost everywhere on Earth. No wonder I love it! I am blessed in so many ways and this page gives me an outlet to share and learn with others that I’d never otherwise know, let alone meet, if only “virtually.”
I welcome you to “like” the “A Dad’s Point-of-View” page, too. Maybe you will love it half as much as I do!
Get Bruce’s new book and Limited Edition (of 500) Poster, A Dad’s Point-of-View: We ARE Half the Equation at Amazon, iTunes, BN.com, or The Store.