Tuesday, June 21, 2005

Should researchers market their ideas

Here's an intersting blog from Seth Godin:

Check it out

In it he says that:
"Marketing is not about trickery or even insincerity. It's about spreading ideas that you believe in, sharing ideas you're passionate about... and doing it with authenticity."

If that's the case, then I'm wondering if more academic researchers (okay, I'll stick to talking about those I'm most aware of--in the area of communication/media/etc.) shouldn't spend some time working on a little marketing 101.

Actually, that was the idea behind starting this blog and my website in the first place. Seemed to me tht a lot of relevant research was being done not only by me, but by others at major (and oftentimes "minor" universities that could directly benefit the media industries.

If you are an academic, then you are well aware of the old saw that we do research that gets published in then sits on dusty library shelves where no one reads it--let alone applies it to anything practical. Certainly, there are some reasons for this. First, the nature of writing the academic article makes it inaccessible to those who don't "speak the language" of research. Secondly, professors on the tenure-track are worried about focusing on other things (like publishing the next article!) and don't have the time to devote to creating press releases or trying to market their ideas.

But, I still contend that the web and other electronic outlets now make it easier than ever to market ourselves and be relevant to society at large.

Some organizations have tried to do this, such as the Association of Educators in Journalism and Mass Communication. Visit AEJMC and check out the "Research you Can Use" link. Unfortunately, this link still ends up in a rather boring pdf copy of press-releases developed and likely distributed mostly in the same old way.

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