If it has to do with your job, then you need to join them. You have to be in them to know them.I have to admit, I was shocked by his report. I thought that by now everyone in PR and marketing communcations had caught on that there was this thing called social media and it offers tremendous opportunities for engagement and tremendous risks for those who ignore it. I could understand that back in 2004 marketers had still not caught on to the importance of social media; but surely now people would understand. Even more puzzling is that Foremski operates out of Silicon Valley, where one would imagine social media adoption would be at its highest. Can it be that the Potomac area is ahead of Silicon Valley in this one respect?
As Foremski points out, you don't have to actually participate, you can just lurk. But understand, your competition understands the value of social media. We understand how, by the use carefully chosen key words, we can attract additional site traffic. We understand how we can use Facebook to highlight client news. We understand how to use Twitter to engage and build community.
More to the purpose your competition is familiar with the many tools of social media to analyze online coverstiaons.
Marketers and PR pros can no more ignore social media than they can ignore the news media. It is part of presenting our clients to the general public. Anyone still holding back should listen to For Immediate Release, the podcast by the celebrated duo of Neville Hobson and Shel Holtz, which talks about the intersection of public relations and social media.