Social media is as real as it can be. And just like the search problem, it is still young and yet to manifest itself completely over the facet of our society. There are numerous challenges, unsolved problems and inefficiencies out there around the world, which IMHO social media can definitely help us transcend. Then why despite the
supply-demand gap, and with all the urge within people & organizations to connect, do the enterprise or Government fail while adopting social media? Or at least end up doing it very inefficiently?
Does not such failures affect the faith of the industry on social media? I believe yes, it does affect the outlook of industry and therefore, it is very important for all of us to not only help people adopt social media but also help them do it with great focus and the right attitude.
So what is important for industry/Government before it joins the social media band-wagon? The answer is ‘understanding of web‘, ‘understanding of two-way transparent communication‘ etc., right? Well yes, but not quite. Check out this article called why enterprise software sucks by 37signals.com which talks about poor user interface of most enterprise software which, inevitably, is a result of separation of procurement/power centers from the working level – i.e. actual users of the system. In large companies (it applies to Government also) the decision makers are NOT the actual users of the systems and therefore, very little emphasis
on quality of user interface.
A similar philosophy applies to use-case of social media where large corporates try to adopt it. The power center, which more often than not is composed of the older generation, is not able to understand or think the way a web-based social channel calls for. Their knowledge or sometimes attitude is inadequate to adopt social media successfully. So how can we support and help industry tide over such a knowledge gap?
The answer is: Guidance.The Social Media Experts need to guide the corporates and the Government for a smooth landing on social media. Opening a Twitter page or Facebook community is NOT the end to it, rather more consulting is required en-route the journey to help the companies understand the worth of undertaking social media especially the importance of listening and solving the problems.
Traditional companies and infrastructure requires guidance to migrate from the traditional thinking to a modern one. The one & only reason why organizations end up in a mess around social media is that they don’t understand how it works. Or how important it is to engage and listen to real people sitting away in their homes and exploring specific services and products and their alternatives offered elsewhere.
There are few examples of large companies like Jet Blue, Dell Computers who have benefited from social media a lot, but that’s because they understood how to respond to people and take actions based on the thoughts & ideas sent by their customers. Social media without actions & decisions is a major failure.
Don’t you think so?
Written by Arvind and reproduced from BubbleIdeas