by: Michael Ogden, Media Relations Manager for New Media, CUNA Mutual Group
There’s a disease spreading throughout the credit union system. It’s contagious and the most vulnerable are the lazy people. It’s called “The Intern Syndrome” or TIS.
TIS has permeated our mail-merge projects, our phone/email list-updating projects, our marketing plans and even more frightening, it has infected some credit union managers so severely they hand over the keys to their social media platforms for the interns to run. Why does this happen? It happens a lot of times because the CU people are tired of paying attention to Facebook and Twitter.
To be clear, I don’t hate interns. In fact, I’ve had interns who went on to be TV news anchors and lawyers. I’ve also had an intern who ended up becoming a bouncer at a Chicago nightclub.
In most cases, your summer or fall intern is not the right person to run your social media platforms. Here’s why:
1.They will be leaving soon.
2.Generally don’t understand the “voice” or personality of your credit union.
3.They will be getting hammered at a party tonight and they have your passwords.
4.You can’t make them care.
5.You remember being an intern…would you trust yourself?
Interns are there to get experience for future employment – so give them that. Just don’t hand over your baby to a stranger!
Like it or not, social media forces us to be active and involved. Personally, I enjoy every part of my job – except meetings. Ugh! I have the type of personality better suited for social media parenting because I’ve worked through it and I’ve learned my personal limitations and boundaries over the years.
When it comes to your intern and your precious Twitter and Facebook pages, do you have that kind of time to figure out if your intern will be a good social media parent? Will they feed the social media baby even after work hours and on weekends by quickly responding to @replies and RTs? And will they clean up after a string of messy DMs at 3 in the morning? Will they?
My point is we need more passion and strength behind our online efforts! Many of us have become lazy because the once shiny-new social media toy has turned out to be a lot of work. And it’s easier to just hand it over to the intern.
If you feel like you are getting frustrated and need some help with your social media baby – call my social media help line at 608-665-4592.
Credit unions have such a unique opportunity to connect with members and potential members using social media. We’re in this together – don’t get lazy! If you get lazy, you could catch TIS.