There's a pretty simple explanation for this - the fundamental purpose of traditional media outlets/ brands is to sell advertising space in exchange for exposure to an audience (via content).
When that isn't your main source of income, 'giving away' content is a lot easier to swallow which is why automotive, drinks and fashion brands are so fond of social.
However, the smarter operators have realised that they can use social media channels and tools, especially in real-time scenarios, to keep them in their 'consideration mix' (this theory that when a consumer is considering between you and your competitors, they will lean more favourably towards you because of the value you have added elsewhere).
Here are 10 examples of traditional media using social media to help encourage consideration elsewhere (and increase general engagement).
Storify is a 'story layer' above social networks - in other words, it wants to help you take the bits and pieces from a story as told on social media channels and create a 'best of' summary.
The Storify editor is very easy to use (drag and drop functionality) and you can re-order your version of the story in real-time as events develop.
Metro.co.uk have been using Storify a lot lately to supplement online reporting on breaking news which is often being scooped up by social media users and shared, driving referral traffic to Metro.co.uk.
Instagram is a petty obvious channel for traditional media as the share a reliance on photography to tell stories.
The @wsj Instagram account has been used in a number of interesting ways, ranging from the sharing of screengrabs of breaking stories to re-releasing classic images used in the past to coincide with breaking stories of any particular day.
One of the more user-focused ideas involved asking people to send in pictures of their morning routines, tagging it with #morningWSJ, which would then be considered for publication on WSJ.com.
Facebook's new timeline feature has created several new opportunities (and a few headaches) so it is important to look at how these can be used.
This example, while simple, is also very clever.
The timeline format LOVES landscape photography that sits across both columns of the page.
Here, The New York Times have promoted their coverage of Baseball's opening day with a brilliant landscape image, using the new format to their advantage.
I get the feeling someone with an SEO background sits pretty highly within the marketing team at The Economist as it appears to fallen in love with Google+ and YouTube of late.
It's use of Google+ is especially interesting as it has more than 730,000 people following the page (mind boggling considering the nature of the content) and appears to be using it as a daily presence to compliment the weekly print edition.
Our last example was launched in February and is a glimpse of what the future might look like from a content curation perspective.
Reuters Pulse uses some nifty widgets including a real-time chat of the most social CEOs in the world according to Klout and a tracker that compares share price with social media sentiment.
This, again, gives a contemporary slant to a well-established media business.
- TheSun.co.uk is using popular comments plugin Livefyre for reader comment management and moderation
- The FT.com makes it easier for you to follow specific sections and journalists on Twitter with a handy directory page
- USA Today Style's Pinterest page (on style)
- Billboard.com has recently joined Spotify's app community
- NBC's Today Show rewards people who visit the NYC studio with Foursquare badges and other tips and hints
These examples are encouraging and tell us these outlets (and others) are looking simply using things like Twitter as a glorified RSS feed.
Image via SocMedSean.com.