Guest Post by Dr. Mark Drapeau – read his blog, follow him on Twitter
You can’t eat whuffie, but it’s getting harder to eat without it, as Tara Hunt says in The Whuffie Factor. For the uninitiated, think of whuffie as an alternative to money – a reputation-based currency that started as a concept in a science fiction novel, now being applied to online business. Hunt’s interesting central thesis is that in order to successfully change social capital into market capital, company employees need to be authentic community members engaging in meaningful participation where their contributions often outweigh personal gains.
For years, Facebook and Twitter have maintained a friendly coopetition of sorts, with neither one taking a firm stance against the other. However, if you believe that Mark Zuckerberg does not actively contemplate strategies for either acquiring Twitter or rendering it obsolete, please think about the landscape and monetization drivers that aren’t yet readily apparent to us as everyday consumers. This may seem like the “Social Media Summer of Love,” but in the end, there are billions of dollars and users at stake here.
Guest Post by Shannon Paul, Read her blog | Follow her on Twitter
Image Credit: Gakuranman
And you thought Virtual Worlds were so passé…a new study suggests that virtual worlds may be getting a second life.
In 2007-2008, many brands and companies flocked to Second Life to build a virtual presence, which spiked, peaked, and created somewhat of a backlash and ultimately a bit of a retreat in the process. By mid-2009, virtual worlds were realizing a comeback of sorts. In July 2009, virtual worlds consultancy kzero.co.uk reported that membership of virtual worlds grew by 39% in the second quarter of 2009 to an estimated 579 million. World of Warcraft, Entropia Universe, Habbo Hotel, Club Penguin and Second Life are respectively posting profits powered by those who were intent on getting a “second” life.
by Michael Brito
Wikipedia tells us that active listening is an intent to “listen for meaning”. Others suggest that active listening should “focus on who you are listening to, whether in a group or one-on-one, in order to understand what he or she is saying.”
These are excellent definitions. But as it relates to customer interactions on the social web, active listening is only one half of the equation.
by Jason Falls
Credit: NotSoGoodPhotography on Flickr
Far be it from me to lament the ability for anyone to build or publish virtually anything now that the age of the consumer and age of information have intersected so gloriously. We are truly blessed to live in a day when, with a little time and instruction reading, even the tech-tarded can have their own blog or website and publish anything they want. The more adventurous and creative, or all-night code-bender freaks, can build platforms and tools and toss them out there to see if the public bites.
I’ve been spending a fair amount of time touring the world in support of my ideas and thoughts on the direction of new PR, branding, service, and marketing communications. My reward and inspiration to continue is sourced from each person I meet and the experiences and challenges they share. I’ve learned that our greatest hindrance to evolve is not our unwillingness to do so, our indoctrination in new media and communications is truly obstructed by the executives to whom we report and serve.
Shot at SXSW
While I’m currently in the midst of writing my next book, I stumbled across some very interesting and useful statistics that offer a glimpse into Facebook behavior and activity as well as the state of the Facebook platform. I believe that they reinforce many of our hunches and assumptions and also introduce facts that may alter the ingredients of your next Social Media initiative.
Facebook has more than 250 million users
This is the unabridged version of my latest post on TechCrunch. This version dives much deeper into the challenges, pitfalls, psychology, and associated opportunities to more effectively navigate this complicated, but imminent issue.
In light of the FTC’s recent scrutiny of Social Media practices and the activity that connects brands to influencers and ultimately consumers, we will soon see guidelines and corresponding penalties to serve as governance for future engagement.
Over the years, I’ve actively called for Twitter to contribute to its own culture and direction by leading instead of following. It would effectively serve as a source of inspiration and orientation for consumers and the businesses hoping to connect with them, which would ultimately increase the alarming 40-percent user retention pattern. I suggested that the company actively define user scenarios and offer a quick-start guide for the unique groups of users seeking guidance in order to not only increase user retention, but also accelerate adoption and the evolution of the service. If I had a bit more time, I would have gladly written a series of educational and instructional guides for them to own and publish on their site. But now, with the help of Sarah Milstein, Twitter is on the right track and is showing signs of a company that is ready to once again lead us to new digital and sociological terrain.
Brian Solis is a digital analyst, anthropologist, and also a futurist. In his work at Altimeter Group, Solis studies the effects of disruptive technology on business and society. He is an avid keynote speaker and award-winning author who is globally recognized as one of the most prominent thought leaders in digital transformation.
His most recent book, What's the Future of Business: Changing the Way Businesses Create Experiences (WTF), explores the landscape of connected consumerism and how business and customer relationships unfold in four distinct moments of truth. His previous book, The End of Business as Usual, explores the emergence of Generation-C, a new generation of customers and employees and how businesses must adapt to reach them. In 2009, Solis released Engage, which is regarded as the industry reference guide for businesses to market, sell and service in the social web.