Monday, November 12, 2012

Finding balance with social media content


First off, what a crazy month. It's been a while since my last post, and losing my laptop to a run-in with liquid at an election night party last week didn't help. Regardless, I came across a quote over a light breakfast read, that prompted this post.

So I finally got around to begin reading a book I ordered earlier this year, Networked: The New Social Operating System. Chapter one begins the book with a story of a couple of crisis. A life-threatening accident happens, and over the course of emergency treatment and recovery, they discover the power of their social network.

At one point, they put the following question out:
"What's the right balance of optimism, humor, and candidness?"
And, because I can never take my Arts Management lens off, I immediately realize how much this sums up much of the challenges I'm encountering as I do more new media work with arts organizations, and explore using social media to increase transparency by way of sharing more institutional content, in addition to programmatic stuff.

In no means do I mean to take away the context of what this quote

But most of the arts organizations I'm involved with are nonprofits. And, not that's it's always gloom & doom, but the combo of being an arts and nonprofit organization means that we are constantly looking to engage, stay relevant, as well as garner support. This is especially crucial as social media calls on all involved to be more transparent.

While support is needed all the time, it's particularly important during times of economic hardship, such as what we've been experiencing for years.  So with all that, the quote above is a nice trio of qualitative measurements for messaging. And, no, each communication or interaction does not have to be one or some combination of all three. But I would say that in terms of quick ways to check, this question does get down to the essence of what to consider, to do social media well.

Thoughts? Let me know what you think, if there are any other questions you ask yourself? If this applies more to you personally or professionally? Also, please leave a comment if there are any other books you'd recommend checking out!

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