Skip to main content

The Problem With Government Social

Life, and death. 

Wanting to know more. To understand.

To share - make a connection.

These are the elemental fibers of social media. They are real, not a fantasy.

Government-generated content too often feels like an affront against what it's supposed to be.

It's like there is a party, and we broke into the party, going "hey, we're cool too."

I don't mind corporate social media as much, because they're explicitly selling.

But much government content, no matter how professional, often has a propagandistic feel, especially in the context of so much scandal.

Unless it's pure educational fact. Not self-serving. Beneficial to the people it reaches.

There are reasons why so much of government social media, and communication for that matter, looks the way it does. It's safe. It's marketing. But it's junk food - not healthy in the long term.

Every agency has its scandals and controversies. Good, informational use of social media could diffuse these. 

The government should not pretend to personify itself - to be a "friend."

It should provide content that answers questions and solves citizens' problems - the problems they collectively hire each agency to solve.

It's a philosophical difference, you see? One rooted in the original intent of social media. Which was to serve as the community well, the town hall, the gathering place. 

Meaningful, comprehensive information is not dry and boring. It's not a reputation risk to share. It's what people want from the government. Open data is really this.

Good social media - great social media - is not an option. It is our job.

* All opinions my own. Photo via Wikimedia. 

Popular posts from this blog

What is the difference between brand equity and brand parity?

Brand equity is a financial calculation. It is the difference between a commodity product or service and a branded one. For example if you sell a plain orange for $.50 but a Sunkist orange for $.75 and the Sunkist orange has brand equity you can calculate it at $.25 per orange.

Brand parity exists when two different brands have a relatively equal value. The reason we call it "parity" is that the basis of their value may be different. For example, one brand may be seen as higher in quality, while the other is perceived as fashionable.

All opinions my own. Originally posted to Quora. Public domain photo by hbieser via Pixabay.

What is the difference between "brand positioning," "brand mantra," and "brand tagline?"

Brand positioning statement: This is a 1–2 sentence description of what makes the brand different from its competitors (or different in its space), and compelling. Typically the positioning combines elements of the conceptual (e.g., “innovative design,” something that would be in your imagination) with the literal and physical (e.g., “the outside of the car is made of the thinnest, strongest metal on earth”). The audience for this statement is internal. It’s intended to get everybody on the same page before going out with any communication products.Brand mantra: This is a very short phrase that is used predominantly by people inside the organization, but also by those outside it, in order to understand the “essence” or the “soul” of the brand and to sell it to employees. An example would be Google’s “Don’t be evil.” You wouldn’t really see it in an ad, but you might see it mentioned or discussed in an article about the company intended to represent it to investors, influencers, etc.Br…

Nitro Cold Brew and the Oncoming Crash of Starbucks

A long time ago (January 7, 2008), the Wall Street Journal ran an article about McDonald's competing against Starbucks.
At the time the issue was that the former planned to pit its own deluxe coffees head to head with the latter.
At the time I wrote that while Starbucks could be confident in its brand-loyal consumers, the company, my personal favorite brand of all time,  "...needs to see this as a major warning signal. As I have said before, it is time to reinvent the brand — now.  "Starbucks should consider killing its own brand and resurrecting it as something even better — the ultimate, uncopyable 'third space' that is suited for the way we live now.  "There is no growth left for Starbucks as it stands anymore — it has saturated the market. It is time to do something daring, different, and better — astounding and delighting the millions (billions?) of dedicated Starbucks fans out there who are rooting for the brand to survive and succeed." Today as …