Ad agency + social media = car crash in slow motion

Here is an excellent article that highlights one of the classic mistakes of social media.  This is the assumption that social media is just another channel you can use to reach a consumer, rather than a channel that consumers use to reach you.  This results in the misplaced belief that an ad agency, or even traditional digital agency, can therefore “do” social media.  They can’t – because their expertise and business model is rooted in the world of the 0ne-to-many mass message.

I suspect the Toyota example referred to in this article will be a painfull thing to watch play out – for all the reasons the article highlights.

The big question is this:  how many organisations are going to engineer these sorts of car crashes before they wake up to what social media is all about?  Quite a lot I would suspect.

In the meatime – I would suggest the following precautionary principle – never, ever, let an ad agency, or media agency anywhere near a social media initiative.  And also take special care when asking a digital agency to get involved – simply because digital agencies make money selling web sites / platforms / digital places.  The whole point of social media is to get out of digital places and operate in digital spaces (conversations).  Note – this particular car crash I spotted a while back was created by a digital agency, also for an automotive client.

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