Social Media is dead – Human Media anyone?

Look, let’s be clear, I’m not any more sure about all this than you are right now. I guess that’s why I’m writing or at least asking you about it anyway.

He’s the proposition (as it was put to me). Anyone who professes to know anything about Social Media will tell you that it works when it’s authentic. That means when it’s not contrived or PR led or structured….like propaganda. In my experience they’re right. Those for whom Social Media works best engage in two-way dialogues and discussions with groups of people with a common set of interests.

The “problem” with that is that we make Social Media work for us by using technology and tools such as Facebook, Twitter etc. These tools, typically “monetize” (how I loathe that word) and are constructed by controlling the way in which we engage, meet, discuss etc. So what?

So  that rather negates the authenticity point doesn’t it? In that any engagement is only as authentic as the controlled means by which we “do it”.

So what?

So as marketeers if we are controlling the way we communicate with people, them with us and them with each other, how “authentic” is the engagement we get from that and therefore how valuable and accurate and valid are the responses and insights we claim to gain as a result.

People know how Facebook and Twitter (et al) work. So they respond and engage in a way that demonstrates they understand the tool and how and why we’re using it….not perhaps how they actually feel or with what they really believe or want.

OK so you get the point. Social Media is a step en-route to something else, something more “authentic” and that I am told is Human Media.

Human Media is true “one to one” engagement which  is lead and determined by the individual and may then be fulfilled by the “brand” in a way which may well still include the technology platforms but is not led by them.

Bold, ambitious and very much part of the Zeitgeist……but is it a reality and what does it or what could it mean for you as a person or as a company or brand looking to engage more deeply with your customer base?

Let me know what you think?

All the best. O