I recently helped organise a conference which was attended by 120 professionals from across Health, Social Services, Education, the Police, and various vol orgs. Compare this group to the average Joe Public, and you’d probably see a higher level of education, higher earnings than the local average, and better access to things like smartphones.
OK, large generalisations and assumptions aside, this was an audience which I had hoped would be fairly well engaged, in the digital sense.
Prior to the event, a number of email communications mentioned the use of a twitter hashtag for the conference. On the day itself the wifi code was written up on a flipchart poster, along with the hashtag, and not one person used it.
During a mid morning break, as the coffee stampede began, several people remained seated, glued to their iPhones. I approached a few people to mention the free wifi, and casually slipped in the twitter hashtag info too. This was my best chance, direct marketing to a niche audience of smartphone users!
What could possibly go wrong?
I think they thought I’d come from another planet, or maybe teleported from the future. A few made comments along the lines of “oh twitter, yeah, my kids use that”, implying it was somehow beneath their intellect to stoop so low.
One of the strongest messages to come out of the conference was the need for greater communication. Yes, that old predictable chestnut.
Digital communication isn’t a basket into which one should throw all the eggs, but where the facilities exist, it needs to be a part of the overall strategy.
But it starts with individuals.
Why is North Wales so far behind the digital curve?