Friday, April 4, 2008

Social Media. Now with more *SOCIAL!!!*

okay you lot. this sod promised Daryl that he would go down for the Social Media Breakfast @ Frujch last saturday, 29 March 2008. i'm glad i did, i met a bunch of great people, had really good conversations and best of all, i enjoyed myself.

it also got me thinking, as PR practitioners who are evolving, we always talk about "oh yeah, and we can leverage on social media to do x-x & x for your brand / organisation." but seriously, i think it's a whole balloon of hot air. why?

because we focus more on the "media" than the "social".

when we focus more on the media, public relations doesn't evolve, it stays the same and we basically riddle the intertubes with more bad PR, more reasons for bloggers not to want to meet us, more reasons for corporations saying that social media doesn't work, more reason for the public to see us as spin doctors. what we basically do, is spread more PR jargon and out-dated messaging methods on the myriad of "social" media tools at our disposal, be it blogs, forums, youtube, flickr, twitter, jaiku, myspace, friendster, facebook, pownce, plaxo, twhirl.. bla bla bla

you get the idea. that's what i loved about the Social Media Breakfast. i could have gone to NUS to attend Web 2.0 - Emerging Industry Series, and as much as i love Kevin and Vantan, they do such a great job explaining what they do on the blogs and vodcasts, that i needed to challenge myself with something really new, and that was to be more involved in the community that i reach out to when i represent clients, and for my own personal interest of better understanding this emerging media industry.

a simple breakfast gathering, no fancy powerpoint presentations, measurement or videos. this is where SOCIAL media gets very very very interesting. meeting like-minded people, and very different people, this is the stuff that people experience and can talk about.

i know for a fact that there was plenty of socialising at the other event, but i'd like to think the the SMB proves that social media is more about the people and community, than it is about cutting edge technology, new ways of communicating and all the other cool technical stuff. social media, in its essence, is about meeting people, sharing and publishing our thoughts to the intertubes.

so as a PR practitioner, don't be bowled over by the communication tools that are out there, they are important, yes.. they help bridge you and the community together, but what is even more important, is to meet your community, face to face, help your clients meet their fans, their advocates, share some of the insight and joy of working in your really cool organisation to the folks that are fans.

afterall, how difficult is it to say "hello"?

personal tagging
Tag Me!
i actually started myself by pasting links over myself, and pasting links on people. something the toolkit didn't tell us we could do -) *smirk*

Nabilah, who i think makes stuff for Frujch
Nab Nab Nab

me with blogger of 2007, Rinaz
Now with more Rinaz

with the infamous DK
DK, now with longer arms than your regular action figure, litford

some bloggers who've covered or the Social Media Breakfast

1. miccheng - now with more video!
2. ridzuan CEO of, with whom he told me many great things and we had some great conversations about social media.
3. and daryl of course, who organised the breakfast.

and of course big shout outs to other bloggers i met that day
1. DK, yes your arm longer than mine -)
2. Rinaz, you asked me why things are becoming more complicated when it comes to blogging these days, i hope to answer your question soon, but even top bloggers in the US are not spared the fate. -)))
3. Nabilah, thanks for the food and hahaha, perhaps our next meeting will be when Jonpan arranges for one of his schemes again -)
4. Hisham, sorry we didn't get to talk, but there'll be more opportunities!
5. Jerrick, always a pleasure to see you -)
6. Jean, i do hope you get better soon -)


rinaz said...

Hi Litford,

It was genuinely very nice to meet you! Of course, you being a friendly guy helps alot :P

I enjoyed our discussions about blogging, its implications et all. I hope to have more thoughtful discussions like these in the future :)

Anonymous said...

Hey thanks for the mention. Sorry didn't get to talk to you much, but that must change the next time we have the SMB =)

DK said...

Aaahhh.... I look fat in that photo.
Can photoshop my face abit? Hahaha... Kidding kidding.

It was a fun event. :)

Kevin said...

I had participants use colorful post-it notes for my Folksonomy workshop back in 2005.

Limited them to one word or so for maximum effect ;)

Anonymous said...

Thanks for the mention! (unflattering photo aside)

Yes yes, we are but the victims of Jonpan's orchestrations...*puppet strings suddenly become visible*

Vanessa Tan said...

Thanks for loving Kevin and me ;-) Hope to meet you in person one day!

brian koh said...

rinaz : aye! hope that we'll be able to add to the blogging community more than take it's goodness away -)

uniquefrequency : no worries dude! i'm sure your next SMB will be just as fun if not more -)

DK : hahaaha, cannot lah, i don't have Xiaxue's mad photoshop skillz..

kevin : hahaha, absolutely brilliant. we should standardise socialtagging so it'll be easier to see what's on flickr -)

allqurkandnoplay : hahaha -) i wonder how jonpan will do in situations like these. I didn't know Frucjh was handing over its management.. my condolences, i thought it was a lovely story you had on your blog!

vantan : thanks for dropping by! i'll always heart two of Singapore's most fun techie blogs to read -) aye, hope we'll get to meet soon without a context of work too!

Ed said...

Looks like we're having the same thoughts. Would you attribute it to the fact that Singapore is very much more supportive of innovative tech industries than any other forms of communication business?

brian koh said...

ed : oh, most definitely on the same page -) i'm sorry, what are we attributing to being more supportive of innovating tech industries?

personally, i think we have a strong cultural root problem of not knowing how to do things ourselves. we always seem to take our leads from a global perspective, and somehow that doesn't translate well with local consumers.

i love Singapore, we have a unique culture, but we've been brought up on a diet of templates and cookie cutters.