There is little doubt we are in the midst of the social media revolution. Question is, do researchers recognize it?
Researchers have a reputation for being the quiet, studious type. They avoid media attention, and therefore, would shun social media tools such as Facebook, Instagram, SnapChat or Twitter. A November 2014 article in Lab Manager addressed the social media revolution and social media’s role in the scientific community in the following way:
“Revolutions rearrange the established order. On one side are the disrupters, agents of change who champion social media. The diehards have a different drift—many of the old lions and scientists in positions of power are defenders of the status quo. Betwixt and between are the majority of scientists, who are of different minds about social media.
“Digital tumult rattles science in its entirety. Researchers certainly hear the roar.”[i]
While they hear the roar, there are plenty of skeptics, and the same Lab Manager article notes that even as social media started to find its way into the scientific community, “doomsayers warned of the cheapening effects this paragon of popular culture and its attendant communication platforms would impose on the good name of deliberate science.”
Twitter has proven its value for a number of businesses and industries, and it certainly has value for modern-day lab managers. Below are five reasons why lab managers should use Twitter today.
- Research – Whether needing addition resources for research studies or simply to ask questions of a certain community, Twitter provides access to a wide-band of industries and professionals who are anxious to contribute opinions, information and ideas.
- Share Expertise – Twitter provides an open forum for research professionals to share their research and thoughts on a variety of topics. People are talking about literally everything on social media, and researchers are experts in their fields who can dispel myths, correct errors and speak candidly about their areas of study. Their contributions can add value to social media conversations while also helping raise awareness for professionals and their labs.
- Recruiting – Twitter has become a marketplace for social job sharing. Lab managers can use the social media service to post job opportunities in the labs, while those looking for their next career stop can also use Twitter’s search features to research prospective employers and employment opportunities. A new study found that Twitter has more job openings than any other social media site.
- New Business – Many companies are using social media as business development tools, and research labs should not be any different. Twitter is an excellent venue for sharing news, touting research results and marketing to perspective customers.
- Staying informed – Twitter is one of the most active news feeds on the Web, and provides anyone easy access to search able data feeds from private and public resources around the world. By monitoring Twitter, labs and their leadership teams can stay on top of trends and issues that may impact their organizations and/or the research they are conducting.
Have you seen other benefits from Twitter? Please let us know in the comments below.