Tuesday, December 30, 2008

Is the honeymoon over?

I came across C.C. Chapman's post today about the honeymoon of social media and marketing being over, and it now being time for the "work" part of the relationship to begin. I found myself unsure of whether I agreed with him or not; I can understand his point, but I'm not convinced that there are enough social media evangelists within the business world (or, in my case, the traditional media world) to even consider the two truly married.

A friend recently wrote a major paper for her journalism ethics class on the value of Twitter in journalism. Throughout the course, she told me her attempts to convince the students of social media's importance fell on entirely deaf ears. The professor pooh-poohed the choice of topic until she promised him she could find some legitimate research. I encountered the same resistance recently from colleagues at the City Desk - they could see no way in which Twitter (and I use Twitter as an example, rather than the end-all, be-all of social media) could serve any journalistic purpose.

This, I suppose, is going to be my greatest challenge as a believer in both "new" and "old" media. I still feel that newspapers are a valuable part of a society (everybody wanted a copy of USA Today from 11/5/08, not a printout of the website), but I've been on-board the social media's usefulness since early on. It's a matter of making those two perspectives gel.

But the point is - they don't yet. The majority of those in the field still find social networking to be a nuisance at worst and a casual association network at best. I can't classify it as a marriage - they're dating, perhaps, but nobody's proposed yet.

1 comment:

  1. I agree with you 100% that there is still a ton of courtship left to be happening out there as well as education.

    But, what I'm getting at is that for the last couple of years I believe that social media has been viewed as the shiny new toy that everyone has wanted to play with and that is wearing off and it is going to take a lot more hard work then just saying "you need to do social media" for a company of any size to jump into bed and start using this space.

    That is really what I'm saying. The points you raise are very valid and reach into every industry.

    My agency has this conversation every day with current and potential clients. It is an uphill battleand people are going to have to work even harder to educate and prove the worth.

    I firmly believe that these tools are crucial to the success of any business, but they just have to realize it first.