“Those who do not learn from history are doomed to repeat it” George Santayana
After a useful day in the company of social media and business consultant Jan Minihane I spent the evening pondering on the pitfalls of social media. Don’t get me wrong, I’m a fan and it’s my job to convince colleagues that social media will rock their world. Here’s the thing, some public sector institutions don’t seem to understand the need to have a business head. Commercial practices like gathering customer intelligence, tracking devices in promotional material and making behavioural change the primary motive of business seem a little alien. And let’s not get started on listening to customers. With all that, my concern is that social media are adopted with our bad habits still intact and that Facebook pages and Twitter accounts become channels through which to magnify worst practice. Before sailing into the brave new world of social media it’s important to understand that it isn’t about the technology. Social media channels aren’t simply a tool, they represent a fundemental change in our culture. They should force you to embrace the principles of social marketing and deploy crowdsourcing . Social media should challenge your organisation to take a long hard look at how it operates and the relationship it has with its customers. Because if they don’t do that then you aint doin’ it right.