Every time a big event happens, everyone always crows about how fast Twitter or Facebook beat the traditional media outlets.
"I get all my news from Twitter," I've heard more than once. Which brings up more than the issue at hand, but we'll set that aside for the moment.
The thing that bothers me most about the social media juggernaut in advertising is that we ignore the fact that Twitter is just a tool, as are all the other social platforms. We don't get our news from "Twitter." We get it from people.
Remember people? They're the vaguely unreliable things that you have to deal with at work, at home and occasionally at the mall. They are also the source of all those Tweets we love to hype. And they are the real power in spreading the word about news, products and pictures of running Bassett Hounds.
Why is it that my local bartender already knows the latest news whenever I try to impress with my Twitter speed? Because a person told him or her. They may have got the news from Twitter, but more than likely they got it from some drunk who got an email from a guy who knows a guy.
Social media is great. It does connect us and accelerate the spread of ideas. But maybe instead of a Facebook campaign or a Twitter-fest, we should be remembering that it's people that spread ideas. And maybe we should remember that if we inspire them offline first, maybe that will be the best way to get them headed online to share the news.