Social Media in Dreamland

Dreamland, originally titled Utopia in its native Australia, follows a couple of people who want to get work done, and crowds of coworkers and partners who create obstacles for them.

At least that’s how it looks to me.

The level of cheeriness seems completely realistic, based on our experience with Australian clients. Even the villains are cheery and everyone is nice to them. I’m sorry to say that some of the villains are the digital marketing team. Technology in general is a villain in this show. In one episode, with the email down, the team were sending emails by typing out the email and having a support person carry the computer to the recipient’s office. The support people remained cheery.

Grab some coffee and watch a five minute segment showing a nightmare meeting between the COO, Nat, and a really worthless digital marketing team proposing a new website in the video below.



It gets worse. The clueless digital marketing people get everyone on the team involved in social media. Check out an exchange as the consequences of their ill-planned campaign unfold:


Colleague: Nat’s post has gone viral. 

Nat: “#NBAJackboot.” Do you think I was maybe a bit forceful?

Colleague: No. They deserved to be slammed.

Nat: Well, I don’t think I slammed them.

Colleague: Oh, you torched ’em.

Nat: I didn’t mean to torch anyone… I think we should delete my post… Why are you smiling?

Colleague: We’ve hit 20,000 followers. 20,000, everyone! (Staff applaud)

Nat: OK, two weeks ago we were a productive, focused unit and now suddenly half my office is off moderating forums or posting photos of their lunch while I’m being cyberbullied.

Colleague: But with 52,000 followers! Are we up to 50? This morning! – 50,000, everyone! – (Applause) Well done.

This is entertainment. It’s not supposed to be realistic. The humor is there, Rosie says, because it’s just enough over the top that it wouldn’t really happen. But we’ve seen examples of social media going very badly awry. McDonald’s, for example. Statistics on social media problems in healthcare settings suggest that it happens more often than we’d like to think.

In the case of Dreamland, it’s all down to a lack of planning.

Social media strategy

You might have a carefully developed method for creating social media posts, with calendars planned ahead of time and sent to a compliance team to make sure nothing is posted without risk assessment. Or you might have a group of interns who post fun stuff spontaneously throughout the day and night. Wherever your organization falls along this continuum, it makes sense to have a social media strategy that informs your choices.

Here are some questions to ask yourself.:

  • What’s your goal? The digital marketing lead in Dreamland picks up the phrase “stakeholder engagement” at a conference and runs with it. They don’t agree on who their stakeholders are and have only the faintest idea what “engagement” means. In real life, it’s essential to have SMART goals that align with your business strategies.
  • Who’s your audience? Develop personas that help you identify who you’re talking to, what they want, and their likely path to purchase for the goods and services you can offer them. This will help you provide real value in your social media, whether that’s curated content, real engagement, or valuable owned media.
  • How can you reach your audience? Determine the social media platforms that will allow you to connect with your audience. Identify useful keywords that will help them find you and the products and services you have to offer.
  • Who will develop awesome content for you? You need to have quality content and it won’t grow on trees. In Dreamland, the marketing team just figures everyone will pitch in, and they do. It leads to failures in mission-critical tasks and negative effects on their online reputation. In real life, you must have a plan for creating content to share.
  • How will you measure success? In Dreamland, the team bases their idea of success on one metric: followers. Unfortunately, lots of people do this in real life, too. You’ve selected a measurable goal, so one of your jobs has to be measuring that goal. Then respond to your results with tactics designed to help you move further toward that goal.

Want to talk about social media strategy? We’d love to start that conversation with you. Contact us and let us buy you a cup of coffee. Not close by? We work with clients on four continents, and we’d love to talk more with you. Call us at 479.966.9761.






Leave a Reply