Going Digital or shouting in the dark?

So it’s always the question when you put things down on a blog. How do you know the carefully crafted words you’ve put on your page are being read and causing people to think and how much is shouting into the dark?

Digital engagement is a tricky thing at best. It’s too easy to get wrapped up in analytics and page views but in the end it comes down to something simple- has somebody gone away with something new or thinking something different as a result of the words I’ve written?


Not everyone is going to engage digitally. I know people who when faced with Twitter mutter “What’s the point? I just don’t get it”. Instagram sounds like something dehydrated in a cup and Facebook is the place they go to play Candy Crush and Bejewelled. (Yes you- don’t think I don’t know!)
 What kind of people have I come across so far?

  • People who use what we have, work with each other and give us the benefit of their experience
  • People who want us to be totally global and digital RIGHT NOW
  • People who are entirely cynical about us being either global or digital any time soon
  • People who are trying everything with loads of enthusiasm and will be the guinea pigs for any tool or respondent to any survey
  • People who try and baffle people (me) with lots of techy acronyms and jargon
  • People who make out they are like, totally digital. I mean, they use Twitter and Whatsapp and Snapchat and Instagram!
  • People who are very excited about ‘being digital’ but can’t tell me what that means (Grr)

I am a geek of sorts. I like things like board games and engaging with people over something fun. I’m also part of the South Yorkshire Comms team as a Brand adviser. That means I have an interest in websites, email, how we talk and all things social, collaborative and enterprise network-y.
And then, there are the people in my Scout Group. Who are all and none of the above. Some of the time. But their overriding aim is to get us to a position where we can make the most of the tools we have and they will work at it, try things, ask people stuff, argue about things and do their utmost to represent the people who volunteer here when it comes to the channels we do have.


It makes me realise that ‘being digital’ is a term that is bandied around and means different things to different people. I think we have a clear idea about what it means for us to consume it, but do we have all the answers about how others want to see content and what we and they may be missing if we don’t have an answer as to how to get it to them?


What alternatives have you got in place for those that aren’t all digital, all the time?


If you are one of those digitally switched on people- Comment, Like – hey- you can even tweet me at @ScoutManDan.
If you’re not and you’re seeing this printed somewhere, leave me a note or just grab me in passing for a chat.

Unless you’re Harry Potter, please don’t use Owls. They make a mess on the carpets

Dan is a Scouter in Sheffield and the very proud leader of Norfolk District Explorers. When not running the Explorers, he also runs the group website, is the Assistant GSL, County Brand Adviser, Exec Member and Young Leader Co-Ordinator. Somewhere in the middle of all that he finds time for a full time job, wife and daughter. Dan and Becki met through Scouting together and she is more understanding than most about the adventures and mud!

Posted in Scouting Scribbles

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