GM Europe Starts Social Media Newsroom

Lately I admit that I’ve been on a rampage covering and critiquing companies that have needed some work with their social media tactics. First Wal-Mart, then Delta. I admit- I’ve been a little out of control.

So I’m glad to say this Monday morning that I saw a social media execution and thought, “hmmm – good job”. So I’m giving one of my first ever “hmm good job” awards to GM Europe, who have employed the “GM Social Media Newsroom” (This award comes with the disclaimer that I can take it back for any reason at any time.)

GM Europe Social Media Newsroom

To put it simply, the site is a new online resource blog for the company’s press releases and media resources that is further extended with the tools of social media. Let me break down a little of why I think this concept works:

1. It uses existing tools. Wal-mart, and now more recently Warner Brothers (which I may discuss at a later time), have tried to make social media from scratch, instead of using existing tools or networks. The result is a heavily branded mess. GM Europe instead opted to implement a low cost blog platform Serendipity. They used Flickr and YouTube to stream in pictures and videos for sharing, they made it possible to share news with any social bookmarking site possible. To enter social media, a company doesn’t have to completely reinvent the wheel, but become a part of the conversation through existing social media technologies.

2. It lets GM become a source. The tagline of the blog is “Product news and downloads for the online reporter” and the site clearly displays the Creative Commons Attribution Non-Commercial license, which allows users to use, adapt and share any of the site’s content. The site does an amazing thing – it welcomes comments and conversation while allowing users to take any of it and republish. It clearly understands that the destination of the conversations will likely be covered elsewhere, and allows the tools to do so.

3. It crosses social media with traditional media. The newsroom is a tool that effectively crosses traditional media with social media. In an interview with Keith Childs, (the mind behind the social media newsroom) stated: “The lines between news producer and news consumer are blurring. One thing is very clear; our news is republished, commented on, shared, tagged and so on.” As a result of this, GM has made this site a resource that is as much for social media as it is for traditional. It is a successful example of how a company can bridge the old with the new.

4. It has potential. As Keith Childs stated in regards to the social media newsroom: “It’s definitely the first stage”. I couldn’t agree more. This is surely the first, safe step for GM, opening the door for for developments and perhaps a riskier execution. In fact the social media newsroom template by Shift Communication shows even further how this concept could be developed.

What do you think about this execution? Do you think this is something that will take off? Do you see any room for social media newsrooms to expand?

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1 Comment
  • Dave Brown
    Posted at 20:30h, 13 May

    Lisa – you rock. When I read the first point – you had me. Lots of companies try to build it themselves. Great way to blow cash, but bad way to be effective.
    Keep up the great work!

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