Born in Long Island in 1949, Ray Dalio founded Bridgewater Associates at the age of 26 in 1975. After being a bad student, by his own admission, he then developed an interest in the stock market. This fueled his educational pursuits. He then moved on to Long Island University and then to Harvard Business School.
Known for the Ray Dalio Principles, he’s considered a revolutionary investor on Wall Street. The Bridgewater Company is known for not only its unbelievably tough interview process and uniquely different methods of investing, but also for its stewardship of a fund with some 125 billion dollars under its management.
What has become a major concern for Dalio in recent years has been his almost maniacal obsession with passing on the knowledge he has acquired over some 50 years of investing in markets around the world. Not only within the realm of finance but also in the more general sphere of life-lessons. His goal not only appears to be to help people on the most personal level, but to find ways to, in his words, ‘reform capitalism’.
Without question, some may argue that the economic machine that is the American economy has expanded in the manner it has due to a rigid form of unbridled capitalism. Dalio actually doesn't dispute this. As a matter of fact it appears that his argument centres on an advocacy for something in between. He notes in a recent piece: "I think that most capitalists don’t know how to divide the economic pie well and most socialists don’t know how to grow it well..." He sees that the underlying concept of capitalism is without question the best system that there is, but he points out how imperative it is to address the starkly obvious issues within American society. From poor education, to even the socio-cultural issues of single parent households.
Fellow billionaire-philanthropists like Warren Buffett and Bill Gates have pointed out similar issues as it concerns capitalism's ‘rough edges’ so to speak. However they’ve been undercut by many loud voices in the public sphere, most having a political agenda. This hasn’t deterred Dalio however, who has committed himself to leaving an indelible in the public philanthropic sphere. He's been dubbed the Steve Jobs of finance.
Although in all honesty it didn’t really matter here or there whether he liked the post or not, what intrigued me on a deeper level was the rationale. Why would he effectively acknowledge the post in person but wasn't willing to do so online? Was he too busy? Was he just quickly scrolling down his timeline?
What's the deciding factor in someone choosing whether or not to engage with particular content on social media platforms?
They Decide Who Sees What
One of the things I’ve picked up on over time is that although a post on social sites may not get a reaction - as in a like, or frown, or heart, (engagement of any-kind) it’s still being seen. The question is by who? The top social media sites like: Facebook, Instagram, TikTok, SnapChat, and others, have worked,- through their algorithms-, so that at the bare minimum your posts are seen by as many within your own social network as possible i.e. your friends and followers. At least at the beginning. As time passes they’re capable of aggregating who is more likely to like your posts. Over time this chizzles down your overall audience (your audience being those who see your posts) to those who are most likely to react to the actual posts themselves.
Don’t believe me? Think about this for a second. If you have 1000 friends on Facebook, I can give you a 100% guarantee that all 1000 of your friends do not see every single post you make. It’s impossible. And this goes for Instagram as well. The amount of time that would be needed for someone to see the posts of all of the users he/she is following, coupled with the other content that bombards one’s timeline i.e. ads, etc. would be enormous. The fact of the matter is, as a pragmatic reality, your featured content is narrowed down to what you’re more likely to be interested in given your activity. And this goes for those who like and interact with your posts as well. In short, you develop a core, a sort of network within a network.
RELATED: START SMALL...LEARN TO INVEST
How Do the Top Social Media Sites Make Their Money
Why would Facebook give away free advertisement? The ‘bread-and-butter' of the top social media sites is their advertising. In 2018 alone Facebook’s ad revenue was rounded out at a whopping 15 billion dollars in the US alone. Worldwide, their revenue doubled, to 33.8 billion thereabouts.
Why in the world would Mark Zuckerburg give you free advertising? The more small businesses, and corporations spend on ads, the more is added to Zuckerburg's stunning 65 billion dollar net worth. And with that in mind, over the week March 7th, Zuck’s net-worth increased by some 3 billion - check that.
RELATED: OPPORTUNITY IN THE 21st CENTURY
So Why Didn’t My Colleague Like My Post?
Well, the catch is, I can never really know. The human psyche and the decision making process is much too complex for even Mark Zuckerburg and Facebook, or Larry Page and Sergey Brin at Google, with all their billions of dollars and brain power to fully understand.
At best, all that the algorithms designed by the brilliant minds at Google and Facebook can really do, is determine broadly, the options afforded to the user. They can make a highly informed guess as to who will like this or who will watch that, but every so often they’re apt to get it wrong.
So if you’re into marketing, or producing social media ‘news’ of some kind, don’t beat up on yourself (or your employees) too much if your social media strategy doesn’t appear to be bringing in as much dividends as you would like. Quite a few people work extremely hard to ensure that you’re forced to spend your money on advertising through their own mediums.
Mikhail E.D. Byng was born in Trinidad. He is a graduate student at the University of Belgrade. He speaks Serbian and English.
Trinbagonian. Traveler. Believer in God. Believer in Creation. Life long Student. Sports enthusiast.