Do you have broad digital competencies?

7 Sep

A recent stat shows 22% of time online is spent with social media. This means 78% is spent using email, surfing the web, and buying stuff online.

Here are US unique visitor stats for popular social media sites in July:

Facebook – 128 million
YouTube – 103 million
Myspace – 64.5 million
Twitter – 29 million
Flickr – 24 million
LinkedIn – 14 million
Digg – 8 million
Foursquare – 2 million

While we all have our personal favourite online activities and sites and we can’t be expected to be experts in all things digital, as professionals we do need to be competent and familiar with the broad online spectrum.

I think many advertising/marketing professionals spend a disproportionately high amount of time using and discussing Twitter (a distant 4th website among a category totalling 22% of online time). I can see why Twitter appeals to ad folk – up-to-the-minute information is shared quickly, and its online community brings opportunities for real-world networking. If Twitter is your thing personally, great. All I’m saying is, as a professional, how strong are your other digital competencies? Do you feel confident talking about best practices for an e-comm site design, promotional opportunities on YouTube, or crafting an architecture for a multi-media Facebook business page? Got your CMS, CRM, and SEO straight? Kept up on eDM?

It’s a big digital world out there, and I think we should be cautious about letting our personal online preferences limit our big-picture digital competencies. (Note to self: stop going to Digg hourly!)

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2 Responses to “Do you have broad digital competencies?”

  1. dougbrowncreative September 8, 2010 at 9:37 am #

    That’s quite interesting. I think you will find that in our market, Victoria, Twitter is the only one of these spaces that is building its own community and that exists as a community builder for both businesses and individuals. Facebook is not about meeting new people, but about pulling people into your space:

    The reason Twitter gets a disproportionately high share of voice amongst social media users is because it is the most egalitarian of the platforms. It exists to drive you elsewhere for deeper engagements: to Facebook, to YouTube, to blogs, to Flickr. The others are really just dead-ends. That might explain the potential that twitters and glitters in the eyes of many.

    But you raise a great point. A digitally savvy agency needs to be versed in all the tools of the trade … and has to find the best fits for their clients. Retail outlet? FourSquare and Yelp. Fundraising? Facebook and Twitter. It’s knowing how the pieces fit together that sets your clients up for success.

  2. Shane September 8, 2010 at 2:42 pm #

    Thanks for your comments Doug. What you call a “dead end” (SM sites other than Twitter) I call “content”. Twitter just points the way -information about information (not that that’s a bad thing).

    I would be cautious about matching SM sites/strategies to clients based on their industry. Consumers, not clients, ultimately decide where the conversation is taking place in the digital world. As a food retailer, Domino’s could have been merrily engaging/monitoring FourSquare and Yelp, while the infamous pizza-spitting video made the rounds on YouTube, destroying their brand.

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