A rose by any other name…

12 June 2008

I came across an interesting article by Gerry McCusker last week on business attitudes towards the term “Social Media”.

Gerry’s opinion is that as social media has long been associated with sites like Facebook, Youtube and Myspace, there’s a danger that corporates tend to view social media as a leisure activity and not an avenue for telling a story or communicating with consumers.

He points out that once a client has been involved with a successful campaign and the benefits speak for themselves, that a client will “get it”.

He goes on to suggest that pitching social media engagement as something else, possibly “Network Media”, “Peer Media”, or “Influencer Relations” might enable PR agencies and other advisors to overcome C-suite resistance.

This is something we’ve been thinking a lot about as well, and while case studies do indeed help break down the resistance to getting started with online activity, we’re resisting calling online outreach “social media engagement” and instead think of it as targeted stakeholder engagement. 

This mental shift helps position the internet as a strong, powerful communications tool, and not just a place to while away hours sending pictures to friends (though, of course, we love the internet’s capacity for that too).

One added benefit clients are obviously appreciating is the detailed and accurate measurement of engagement offered online: something that’s a little harder to measure in an offline world (or harder for some to fully understand or connect directly back to a behaviour change). With that in mind, why not push the measurability angle to describe our activities online?

May you live in interesting times

06 June 2008

Hello everyone.

By way of introduction, my name is Matt and I am a bit of a geek. Quite a bit of a geek, as it turns out. From borrowing my Dad’s modem in the 80s to connect to bulletin boards through to getting involved with Twitter, I’ve always been fascinated by the capacity for technology to shrink the world.

It’s no secret that we’re living in a remarkable age. We’re witnessing the democratisation of media and are faced with a constant onslaught of new tools to help us – as human beings – keep in contact with each other.

In terms of social change, I strongly feel that history will look back on the current era as just as revolutionary as the invention of the press in the 15th century AD. It’s wonderful to be a part of it.

This blog will track trends and exciting developments in digital communications and attempt to add some analysis of what it means for the world of PR.

I welcome your comments and, of course, collective conversation.