“We can’t do that”

February 23, 2011

Was just inspired by Nicholas over lunch. He said he’s fed up of hearing people say “we can’t do that”. So am I, so I thought I’d list some “we can’t do thats” I particularly detest. Feel free to add more:

  • We can’t do communication, our remit is just government relations (since when is government relations not communications and no it’s not your remit, your remit is success, and that might require stuff beyond GR.)
  • We can’t do digital, we’re not ready for it (well get ready.)
  • We can’t do digital, our boss/board/member is conservative (digital doesn’t have to be whacky geo-location stuff, it can just be content creation and you’ve done that for years. In any case, your audience isn’t conservative, so who cares if your boss/board/member is? Check FH’s MEP survey if you’re not convinced.)
  • We can’t do digital, our industry is conservative (so what?! Same reasoning as boss/board/member fits in nicely here too.)
  • We can’t do digital, our audience is older (we’re not saying develop an app aimed at 4 year olds on Facebook. Every demographic uses the web in some way.)
  • We can’t do digital, we don’t have internal support (prove value to them and use facts and figures e.g. the aforementioned MEP survey.)
  • We can’t do digital, we don’t have the resources (no one is saying do a global blogger engagement programme; digital is huge – start small and then scale.)
  • We can’t do digital, we only have an audience of 50 (no it’s never just 50; in any case, if it were just 50, they’ll still look you up online.)
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4 Responses to ““We can’t do that””

  1. Nicholas Says:

    Good to see our lunch was somehow productive 🙂

    Most of these excuses only reflect how the person stating them is not ready to evolve together with his audience, the MEP, the digital citizen, the client or whoever they have to communicate with.

    In the other hand, the reason it is striking me as the very wrong approach is that I also have very enthusiast individuals getting hands on, trying step by step and finally getting incredible results even if it was sometimes not at all their field of expertise, not even an interest at the start of the process. Very quickly, not only it became a strong interest but also an incredible platform to deliver their message, to profile themselves or their company. Some of them engaged simply based on an intuition…these people should trust their intuitions more often…and the others should give it a try, open a Twitter account or post on communities covering topics they have an interest in. They’ll change their mind once they’ll know what it is about.

  2. Coralia Catana Says:

    If I may add:
    “We can’t go digital, as waht we can say is politically too sensitive and we would take too much risk” (well, politics is about taking risks, and not going online with your issue would only make it even more sensitive)

  3. C De Bie Says:

    – we can’t do digital, our industry is too regulated (well find a way to address these regulations in your digital strategy)

    – we can’t do that, we’ve never done it that way (time for a fresh approach maybe?)

    – we can’t do that, the law doesn’t allow it (well, then, let’s find a way to do it that’s not against the law)

    – we can’t go digital as a corporation, we should follow the lead from the industry (then don’t be surprised you’re not perceived as an “industry leader”)

  4. Nicholas Says:

    I had a good one today. About a Twitter campaign around a flagship initiative: “We should leave Twitter to teenagers…”


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