Today’s post is a reaction to the following video.
The F-18 is “just a mode of transportation”
The Fax Machine Example
For instance, the fax machine was revolutionary in many ways, we just don’t think of it now because it’s outdated. Rather than mailing a contract from New York to London which takes significant time, money and fuel, the fax machine enabled a virtually instantaneous copy to be available across space and time. This enabled businesses to save on those resources and get things moving. It was a big deal at the time. Social Media is bigger than that.
Social Media is not “just a channel.”
Social Media is not just IM, it’s not just wall postings…it’s not just Twitter. Social Media represents a fundamental shift in the way we communicate. It’s different from the phone, it’s different from email, because it IS those things and more. It’s review sites, microblogging, social networks, content sharing sites, life-streaming and activity feeds. It’s social search, it’s wikis and it’s forums. It’s marketing, public relations, sales, customer service and internal collaboration. It’s all of these things and more. The only limit is our collective imagination. It’s a communication channel but on a size and scope that could only be dreamed of before.
No prior technology enabled companies to tap into what people are saying on such a large scale.
No prior technology empowered customers to make smarter decisions and share information so easily.
No prior technology allowed anyone to create a video and potentially distribute it to thousands or even millions of people within a matter of days.
How is this “just a channel?”
Where he’s right: Social Media isn’t going to save most businesses
Here’s where he is spot on: if you don’t have something valuable to offer, Social Media isn’t going to fix that. Many businesses do get wrapped up in the hype surrounding Social Media with expectations that putting up a Facebook page will somehow revolutionize a business by its mere existence.
Businesses with crappy products, businesses that don’t care about their customers, businesses that aren’t in the habit of listening to customer feedback are going to be in the same position, regardless of the tools available. Without doing aything different, Social Media will only amplify how much you suck or how awesome you are.
So yes, in many ways Social Media is channel…but it’s a damn powerful channel.
…he said, on YouTube.
Let’s just ignore the glaring irony that I found this YouTube video via Google+ and am sharing it on my blog. Let’s ignore the fact that without these channels most of these people that want to reduce social media to “just a…” would still be trying to figure out how to reach an audience.
Removing the gatekeeper was a big deal, it’s opened up communication to anyone, it’s changing the world.