MSVU Social Media Course Blog

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3 things that took me 6 weeks to learn

As I ponder about the last 6 weeks and how social media can be used in public relations, I would like to think I’ve taken some valuable lessons from it:

1. Social media doesn’t work…. if you’re anti-social.

  • You’re not going to get to everyone. As a consumer, I find it difficult to stay on track of the dozens of sites that are available to me. In fact, I found it increasingly difficult to keep up with not only the wiki assignment, but these blog posts as well. My own personal blog has sat, untouched, for over 3 months. If you accept that a) not everyone has a computer, and b) those luckily enough to own one aren’t necessarily building a ning network or tweeting to their tweeps. Take what you have, and use it to the best of your ability.

2. Social media will take over traditional media

  • Of that I am certain. We are so close to the tipping point, if not already past it, on the rise and popularity of social media. Save for those people in my earlier lesson who will never use social media, mostly everyone and their dog has at least heard of it. Once the older generation passes (as horrific as that sounds, it’s true), and the newer generations keep on coming, it will just be an everyday occurrence that people will check social networks like they do their email. Just like my grandmother used to write her weekly letters – new tools for a new generation.
  • For public relations – this means stepping away from sending out news releases, media kits and the same old, same old. It means actually being innovative, and thinking with a fresh brain or looking at the world with a new set of eyes. Once the old-fashioned PR practitioners retire, the social media world is ours.

3.  Nothing will ever replace face-to-face communication

  • With my personal conviction that social media will become an everyday tool not only for us PR practitioners, but for the world, I believe a caution must be exercised. Nothing has more impact than a face-to-face conversation. People paid attention to President Obama’s tweets, but no one could take their eyes off him as he said his inspirational words about change, and being able to face a world in crisis. Social media tools are just that – tools. It shouldn’t be used as a crutch, but as a channel. Whenever possible, always keep your human connection – the emotional touch that truly will persuade an audience or make them listen that much longer, or more attentively.

These are the three most important lessons I’ve taken out of this course – along with the technical ability to use all of these social media tools.

I am taking away the ability to step back from it, think about it, and say “How can I use this effectively? Is it worth it or am I just throwing it out there because it’s new and hip?” Like DeNel wished, when I think about how social media can influence my future work, I’m going to sit back and think critically about it for a little while before I jump on the bandwagon.


June 22, 2009 - Posted by | Uncategorized

1 Comment »

  1. Thanks for this post!

    Comment by filme downloaden | July 19, 2009 | Reply

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