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Beyond Fans and Followers – Why Engineers Should Care about Social Media

We all know the engineer stereotype – the awkward, socks-and- sandals-wearing brainiac who cringes at the word “social.” But in the world of digital media, engineers rule. After all, they are the ones who create the technologies powering today’s social hotspots. From the early days of the LISTSERV to today’s “Tweets,” National Instruments has actively engaged with customers online to ensure success, obtain product feedback, and share news.

But NI understands that in today’s expanding social Web, it is easy to get overwhelmed with the platforms. Should you be a Facebook or LinkedIn member? What is the point of Twitter? Does anyone still use MySpace? National Instruments is here to help.

The Top Five Reasons to Give a Tweet and Use Social Media

1. Get Help – The next time you are having an issue with NI LabVIEW software or any other NI product, do not throw your computer out the window. Instead, turn to your peers in the NI Discussion Forums (ni.com/forums) or watch a how-to video on the LabVIEW YouTube channel (youtube.com/labview).

2. Get Ahead – NI employees and customers are often sharing cutting- edge insights and code on blogs and sites such as the NI Developer Community (ni.com/community), Facebook (facebook.com/labview), and Twitter (twitter.com/labview). Stay updated on the latest trends and innovations by “following” thought leaders from your computer or mobile device in these various outlets.

3. Get Heard – Ever wish you had a direct line to NI R&D? Now you do. Share your ideas for LabVIEW features or vote on your favorite suggestions in the NI Idea Exchange (ni.com/ideas).

4. Get Connected – Building a strong network is important. Join an online group (ni.com/groups) or LinkedIn to find a new job or connect with other engineers based on your product interest, geographic location, industry, or application area.

5. Get Famous – Upload a video, write a blog post, Tweet, or post your crazy LabVIEW applications on Facebook. Projects such as the iPhone-controlled car powered by LabVIEW have been discussed by outlets from cars.com to CNN.

Watch a webcast on social media for engineers.

This article first appeared in the Q2 2010 issue of Instrumentation Newsletter.


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