I’ve spent the last few years telling organisations to invest in social media, to create a Facebook Page, set up a Twitter presence, start buzz monitoring and to be equipped to engage customers in conversations online…
…usually to find that most people are only concerned about not keeping up with their customers. And although this is a valid concern, it shouldn’t be the only reason for investing in social media.
The thing is, I don’t actually care about Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, Vine, Snapchat etc. Although I think these can be really useful tools to help some of the more important stuff – the stuff that is really going to help your business deliver its mission.
Maybe it’s the words ‘social media’ which are misleading some people.
They’ve got bad connotations. They’ve become associated with the idea that your office doing the ‘harlem shake’ is the best way to engage your customers (I put my hand up – I’ve suggested this before).
The thing is, it does work… sometimes. Organisations having fun is really important. It’s when it’s a pretence that I get bored with it, and customers are getting tired of it too.
What I’m really talking about is ‘kulturelle etterslep’ (which is a Norwegian term meaning ‘cultural lag’).
The term cultural lag refers to the notion that culture takes time to catch up with technological innovations and that social problems and conflicts are caused by this lag. — Wikipedia
What I mean by this is that we’ve moved on from believing the hype. We, as consumers, can see whether your employees are really happy or that you have true purpose in what you do.
But you can solve the kulturelle etterslep problem if you start looking beyond the digital tools and start focusing on authenticity, trust, purpose and meaning. It is this which will shine through.
If you invest in developing a culture which is truly authentic and has purpose and meaning, then your Facebook/ Instagram/ Twitter/ Vine/ Snapchat account will look after itself.