I read this article yesterday and am still shaking my head about it today. The article’s premise–“Governments Tweet, Few Care”–is based in part on one guy’s opinion that government is boring and people only seek excitement and entertainment on social networks. The article goes on to state that this guy “does not use social-networking sites.” Why are they interviewing him, then, about using social media for government?
Then they tell how the guy from a local ad/PR agency explains that Twitter and Facebook aren’t great online networking sites for business and government because people are there for entertainment, not work. Oh, really? Or could it possibly be that his agency doesn’t know how to design an effective, engaging social media strategy?
THEN they quote another local public information officer who declares matter-of-factly that social sites really only reach niche markets and staff time is “best invested in traditional media.” Yeah, Facebook clearly only reaches niche markets with its 350 million active monthly users. That’s some niche.
I don’t mean to sound like a hater, but let’s call a spade a spade: many businesses are having a lot of success using Facebook and Twitter for business. Don’t assume that it’s not even worth trying based on articles like this one. Yes, it’s crowded out there–but that just means there are that many more people you can potentially reach with a well thought-out and orchestrated social media strategy.