Just because you can’t use your car to cross the ocean doesn’t mean that the sea isn’t a good transport medium. This isn’t a controversial statement. This is because we understand the difference between the sea and the land.
Why is it then that so many organisations (especially media organisations) fail to understand the difference, or even that there is a difference, between traditional (mass) media and social media?
Now if you want to cross the ocean, it pays to have a boat. There is no point simply trading in your salon car for a Toyota Hilux and driving that into the waves in the belief that you are going to get anywhere. Because whilst the Hilux has been shown to be as about as effective operating in the ocean as any wheeled vehicle can realistically expect to be, the limits of that effectiveness will only ever extend to about 10 feet from the shore and/or about 3 foot in depth.
Despite this every new dawn bring a fresh rash of corporate individuals leaping lemming-like into their corporate Hilux’s (and sometimes even salon cars) and roaring down the traditional media beach into the social media waves. It is a painful thing to watch.
And at the other end of the beach those same individuals are looking at the boats proffered to them and saying “where’s the wheels on that then mate, how do you expect the wife to take that to Tesco?” It is a painful thing to hear.
Social media is as different from traditional media as the ocean is to the land. Once you recognise that fact you can get about just fine. Fail to recognise that fact and you will find yourself in a spot of difficulty. That’s my thought for Friday.