Where do we go now? A reflection on media reflection

Look at the mainstream media. Now look at social media.

In the first days of 2017, both mainstream media and social media seem thick with 2016 retrospectives, on all levels of content. It is not that surprising. Still, I personally cannot remember it having happened so much, and so overwhelmingly in previous years. At least not on social media.

The Guardian, Tuesday, January 2nd 2017.

Coffe&Natter group member post of Facebook, Tuesday, January 2nd 2017. 

Now, this could be a sign of scarcity in actual news or proper content. Alternatively, it could be people reflecting more on the lessons to be taken from 2016. This would not be so surprising, considering the momentous events of the past year.

After all, what could we make of Brexit, Trump, Erdogan’s triumph in Turkey, Putin’s Russia posturing in Syria and elsewhere, other than lessons to learn? As only by learning the lessons can we hope to manage these situations better.

And the other predominant trend on media during these first days of 2017: what do we expect in this new year.

The link with media enterprise

So you might ask yourselves what does this all have to do with enterprise, with creative business, with media initiative? Well, it has everything to do with it. After the introduction to the media enterprise series, we too have reflected on the lessons learnt and the way to move forward.

In November 2016, we looked together at how journalists can find their very own business idea, and where they could start. I used Birmingham Faith Map, a project stalled for quite some time, as one example of an online initiative which needed an infusion of social media to stay alive. There are many more projects and businesses out there in need of good social media management.

Simply put, businesses need social media. Not each of them will need the same type of online presence, of course. If you are a local butcher’s, with an already established clientele, you might not benefit the same from using social media efficiently as a project run by Birmingham City Council would. A Health and Social Care company, offering support to the elderly or to people with learning disabilities, might also have greater needs for social media than your local groceries store. It seems further analysis and reflection is required.

A lesson in development

Once you find your enterprise idea and see how you can make it work, you cannot reflect only at a specific moment in time, such as the end of 2016 or beginning of 2017. Every step in developing your idea needs further reflection, which will help you decide what your next steps are.

In our next post, we will analyse the different needs for social media of different types of businesses.

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