Saying you understand Twitter but don't have time for it is like saying you understand sleep but don't have time for it.
Reuters just published an article that interviewed "old school" advertising and media big-wigs. They proclaimed that they understood Twitter and Facebook, but didn't have time for it.
Maurice Levy, chief executive of advertising group Publicis, said, "I hate the idea that I would have to share things which are not for sharing or which are superficial." Evidently, he's never looked at Twitter before.
Levy also said "I understand how to wash dishes. I don't do it regularly." He's right. But housekeeping isn't his job. Selling products is.
Martin Sorrell, of WPP (who owns companies like Ogilvy and JWT), said, "I have enough to do answering your emails...I'm 66 years old. I'm almost in the glue factory."
Saying that you understand Twitter but don't have time for it, is like saying you understand sleeping but you don't have time for it - you will eventually die. Like sleep, to truly appreciate Twitter, you need to experience it.
Do these executives need to be on Twitter 24/7? No, but they at least need to understand that it is more than sharing who you're eating with, as Hearst Magazines president David Carey thinks Twitter was all about. He wouldn't think that way if he spent any time on Twitter.
It's no surprise that old media company's stocks, like Publicis are down about 45% from 10 years ago. It takes mergers and acquisitions for this companies to innovate, not from within.
It's a stark contrast to companies like VaynerMedia, headed by business hustler Gary Vaynerchuck. Gary is actively engaging with his audience on Twitter, take a look at his stream. VaynerMedia has landed client like the New York Jets and Pepsi.
So, do you you really understand social media? Or do you just think you do?