A number of events over the last few days has led me to question whether I am wasting my time and energy.
Not wasting it out of some sudden discovery of a new time management tool, but wasting it by trying to evangelise this new social medium, ‘Web2.0’. There are days where one feels like one has been shouting from the rooftops to a city of the deaf.
If one ascribes to the school of thought that goes, “When the student is ready, the teacher will come” then it seems to me that only one in a thousand students are currently ready.
Now, this may be because I live in Australia, which is usually three to five years behind North America and Europe when it comes to trends of any sort. But it was a closing comment by my good friend Donna P on a post about a Web2.0 conference she attended that suddenly struck me harder than it perhaps should have. Perhaps I’m just in need of a good sleep.
Most of them are not yet Web 2.0-savvy. But that’s OK. We can explore this new world together.
I’ve been exploring this new world for over a year now and it didn’t take me more than a few days to ‘get it’. I’ve been talking to one client for nearly a year about it, running demos of Web2.0 technology and they still don’t ‘get it’. I know that Donna has been ‘getting it’ for about as long as I have, yet her clients seemingly still don’t. I’ve seen some of Donna’s newsletters and it’s not for want of telling them.
I moved my own newsletter subscribers over to the feed of this blog and, by and large, they have all stayed; only a few have dropped out, but a couple I suspect because they already get my feed via a feed reader like GreatNews or Bloglines.
But pounding the pavement and pounding the keyboard about this new technology is having little to no effect. My one client that has ‘got it’ has ‘got it’ in a major way and we’ll be rolling out stage two of several stages just as soon as they can figure out how to cope with the substantially-increased requests for their time that stage one — a blog — has generated. I’ve got another client who is about to launch into blogging because they trust me when I tell them it is the right thing for them to do (and I believe that for them it is). Another client has started a blog, but still don’t publish anywhere near as often as they should to build up momentum. Another client has put the construction of their blog on temporary hold while they cope with ‘Business As Usual’ with two of the three partners off on maternity leave.
So slowly Australian businesses are ‘getting it’. But I wonder if I should just let well enough alone and stop trumpetting Web2.0 as a ‘business essential’ (which I believe it is — every business should be engaging in this social media, even coffee shops, because every business relies on their relationship with key customers to continue and grow, so that those key customers end up evangelising their business).
Or perhaps I just need a mini-holiday, get my other 4,000 word essay out of the way and get back to my own ‘Business As Usual’ — playing a leading role in helping businesses communicate better with their stakeholders for better business results.