In a continuation of my effort to catch up, EBN EiC Bolaji Ojo tipped me over the edge again bolstering my position, tangentially, my last post.
Ojo, and his partner in crime at EBN, Barbara Jorgensen addressed the product of not doing social media right: Site Fatigue.
"Each week," he wrote, "I receive a deluge of requests to Like companies on Facebook, follow tweets on Twitter, or be LinkedIn with others. Don't ask me to follow your tweets if they aren't worth following. Don't ask me to tag or recommend you if I can't justify the investment of my time."
Which has been my point for many years. Social media is not about mass marketing communication. It's about building relationships and trust. If you are posting links to poorly written and repetitive press releases and marcom material (that's pretty much everyone) then you are not using social media properly or even efficiently. You're just pissing people off. And in the case of Bolaji and Barbara, those aren't people you want to annoy.
The problem is most marketers and engineers don't really know how to do anything else. They are ensconced in their technology, absolutely sure that what they are doing and saying is completely unique and superior than it is to everyone else. Most in-house communicators and the publicists they hire have no idea what is actually unique to their product. It takes someone with objectivity and a broader world view to figure that out. Someone, like, a journalist.
The problem is that journalists are so bombarded with extraneous, unusable content that they lack the time and resources to filter it out. As Barbara commented, "Barbara chimed in with a comment to Bolaji's piece. "I think there is opportunity here for anyone who is willing to be a filter. Not just a random filter: an educated, balanced filter."
As I've pointed out in my series on earned media, some companies are hiring laid off journalists to manage their in-house publication efforts, which is a great first step. But that effort doesn't really reach outside of the corporate wall and is, therefore, suspect to potential customers.
We seem to have reached a significant pain point in media. My company, Footwasher Media, saw it coming many years ago. Welcome, pilgrims. Time to give us a call.