Social Media in Plain English

The folks at Common Craft have another great video, this time about social media. What I especially like about this one is that it doesn’t talk about technology until near the end. The video focuses on the metaphor of ice cream: it can be mass-produced in a factory that focuses only on flavors with mass appeal, or individuals can create their own flavors at home. This really is about the change in the business & media environment at a high level rather than the specifics of how to use any one technology.

This makes me think about ways I can use metaphor and narrative in the courses I develop, or maybe for facilitator training. We’ve run into resistance from some instructors against using blogs, wikis, and chat, even when they’re integrated within the LMS (removing the “I don’t want to create another log in” argument). A number of our facilitators don’t see why we’d bother with all these new-fangled tools when they can just use the discussion forums for everything. I wonder if an explanation with more of a story, like this video, would be more effective.

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2 thoughts on “Social Media in Plain English

  1. Christy,

    I’m sure it will! Last Friday I came back from a client and one of our accountmanagers rushed towards me and said:
    “Jago, I need to give a presentation on Monday about the benefits of our learning solutions.”
    “Well, you have one don’t you?”
    “Yes, but it sucks”
    “Hahaha, ok, well at least you’re honest”
    “Can you think of something?”
    “What do you say about “us” thinking of something”

    So we sat down and within 10 minutes we had this cool idea where we made 6 characters, all with a different role within the organization: a Manager, an IT-specialist, a SME, etc. Then from all these points of view we would tell how our learning solutions would benefit them and their work in different ways.

    We looked up some cool photos of people on iStockphoto, slammed it into Powerpoint and I am sure that on Monday he’ll make a great presentation. Because it will tell an understandable and even more important: a human story everybody can relate to.

  2. Jago, that’s terrific. It sounds like it will be a great presentation. Actually, my manager used a similar technique for a presentation to some of our instructors. She was talking about students from different generations, sort of a “digital natives” idea without going too far. She created a profile for each person and gave them a little story to go with their picture. I bet we could do something similar for the instructors in this situation too.

    Thanks for the idea!

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