#08 – Why my organisation does not work on social media

SMART blog.
Tech, pop-culture, and politics for a sexy media literacy.

Why your organisation does not work on social media.

by Alessandro Cozzutto 
Digital Communication Specialist @ Slash_Prod
Estimated reading time: 4 minutes + videos
I know because it is a mistake I do (and continue doing) myself.

At least, I acknowledge I have a problem.

Maybe you would feel better if you did the same: besides I am working on a couple of solutions, because I want you to know that
This is an article in three points (more if we ever meet for a coffee):

  1. what “working/not working” here means. 

  2. why it is not working. 

  3. how it could work (better).
Live painting at the European Parliament
Duration: 2:03 minutes
1 working/not working
A few common symptoms that reveal whether your social media presence is effective or not:

  • you have an account with no likes/followers/subscriptions excluding your mother, your father, your siblings, and the fake account you have set up for your dog. 

  • you have many likes/followers/subscriptions but no much interaction.
  • you post regular updates about your activity, but when you ask, nobody is informed/has noticed. even if you feel you have the above, 

  •  you do not manage to convert your followers into leads/orders/members. your boss told you: “I don’t know what, but we should do more!”.
European Startup Prize
Duration: 1:53 minutes
Why it does not work
A few common explanations why your social media presence is not effective fall into three distinct categories:

  • complacent,
  • self-evident,
  • not-so-evident reasons. 

Complacent reasons: 

  • people are stupid.
  • it’s actually a conspiracy of the tech-industry against your organisation. 

Self-evident reasons: 

  • you do not invest much effort/time/interest in your social media presence.
  • your organisation cannot disclose much of its activity.
  • your management does not believe in social media and/or cannot provide communication people with the appropriate resources.
  • what you sell is good, but not very sexy. 
Not-so-evident reasons (a.k.a., the reason to read this article):

  • you do not know your target (and you’re not so interested in knowing it).
  • you think that it is about you, your message about how important your daily work is (and you do not realise that people do not care about your life, as much as you do not care about theirs).
  • you use social media to spread your message, because it’s for free.
  • you use social media to spread your message, because everybody is doing it.
  • you use a formal language and post serious stuff only.
  • before posting anything on social media, you need your board’s approval.
  • you use emoticons to disguise your top-down corporate communication as social media communication.
  • you expect people to give their time, their money, their engagement to your organisation just to make you happy.
  • you understood you have to offer something, but what you have to offer is not good enough (or it is nothing at all). 
Let’s coop – SmartBE
Duration: 2:19 minutes
How it can be better
How can your organisation work better on social media? 

 It depends on a case-by-case analysis, of course. 

However, the lists above should already suggest a few simple interventions, no matter the size, the field, the goal of your social media activity: 

  1. ask your audience what kind of content they would like to see from you! 

  2. be simple and consistent. 

  3. pick your fights carefully (not too carefully). 

  4. do not force your colleagues into something they are not willing to do. 

  5. do not let them draft your post: it’s like if a journalist let a politician ask the questions and write down the answers.
Not enough?
Here are 5 tips more:

  1. translate your colleagues’ technical work into a story.

  2. make experiments, fail fast, start again quickly! 

  3. do not stress about social media, cause people hang out on social media precisely when they stress too much in the real world. 

  4. show you care (although we all know you don’t). 

  5. share this article with your management. 

And for all questions, doubts or feedback, do not forget to invite me for a coffee, cause – as I wrote above – you are not alone. 


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