Friday, October 22, 2010

Twitter Powered Agency Website Has No Soul

I was making an effort this week to be less cynical, when along comes a letter from Claire at EuroRSCG to ruin my vow. Seems the London agency's new "Twitter powered" website is up, "letting the 200 people within its office power its website in real-time."

Russ Lidstone, CEO Euro RSCG London, said, “The agency listens to its employees and connects with its clients on a completely new level. This new Twitter centric website embodies our belief that social media should sit at the heart of what we do.” OK, Russ, now let's change your title to CWO, Chief Wanking Officer.

Why won't this work? First, employees are going to be cheeky yet careful, not allowed to reveal their true thoughts, which is half the fun of Twitter. They will always be mindful of the boss and the clients watching.

How to get around that? Create fake profiles, or alternate profiles for real people so they can keep their normal lives off the homepage of the agency. What do you get? Boring, safe, company shills alternately touting client sites while trying to make life in the London office appear light and fun. This won't last, and what is its point anyway? To show clients that we understand the crazy new world of social media?

Here are the profiles of some of the recent tweeters on the EuroRSCG page:

Seeing a pattern?. All new accounts. Either EuroRSCG's employees really weren't all that into Twitter in the first place, or more likely, brass made them create alternate "work" accounts for this endeavor.

Naomi, from one of the profiles above, offers a link to her personal blog, however, where her bio tells it all:

London girl in the soulless world of advertising, seeks outlet for obsessive need to consume and own many pretty things.

Finally, honesty. But I'll bet you some money Naomi's bosses will ask her to remove the link very soon. Too much transparency. Too much truth.

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