All sectors are doing really clever and exciting things using social media tools at the moment. I wonder if we should re-name these tools? If they are purely for social communication purposes, then why are businesses and the public sector getting involved.
It seems rather like being in the pub with your mates having a chat, and perhaps even including people around the pub whom you don’t know – when suddenly a disjointed voice joins in the discussion, with well-crafted verse – clearly delivering ‘a message’.
Ed aside: a message is how a person asks for a bribe in Kenya btw 🙂
Or my old bug-bear, having an email discussion with someone and suddenly an extended copy list has been added to the conversation, and you end up having – what is more often than not a disagreement – in front of a sea of faceless people. Weird.
So… my point is that these social media tools are supremely brilliant and simple at enabling conversation and connections in the SOCIAL world. However, they are, or could be, an expensive distraction from problems that are less simple to solve. I hear you cry at the word expensive, these tools are dirt cheap/free (I know) but what I mean is that if organisations start spending time, money and attention on developing clever ways to interact with their customers using Twitter – there is a risk that the knotty, difficult problems will continue to go into the too-hard box. All in the name of quick-wins and fanfare.
For example, I would love to be able to register a change of address or circumstance in one place online, and have all government departments notified.
Wouldn’t it be fabulous if we could do this?