In business, social media is becoming a lot like email. Every company has it. In an Altimeter Group survey of 700 executives and social strategists fielded in late 2012, we found that 100 percent of participating enterprise organizations run to varying extents an active social media strategy. But unlike email, organizations haven’t mastered how to effectively communicate through the likes of Facebook or the tweets of Twitter.
Today’s leading companies are already becoming obsolete. Fortunately or unfortunately, they won’t know until it’s too late. In 10 years, 40% of the Fortune 500 was replaced. Irrelevance is only accelerating. It’s Digital Darwinism out here. #AdaptorDie!
Ignorance is bliss, until it’s not.
Technology…social, mobile, real-time, it’s changing the world. Customers are evolving into something new. They’re more connected, empowered, and demanding.
In a post Occupy world, organizations everywhere should contemplate the themes that flooded the undercurrent of one of the greatest consumer uprisings in recent history. Even though some minimize the rise of Occupy as a rebellion without a cause, I believe there’s much to learn from these events to prevent them from happening again…or at least to you.
We live in an era of what I refer to as Digital Darwinism, a time when technology and society are evolving faster than the ability of many organizations to adapt.
Over the years, I’ve studied how disruptive technology affects consumer behavior and decision-making. I’ve also researched how businesses react (or don’t) to these changes. What I’ve learned is that barring a few exceptional instances of complete ignorance, organizations are open to adaptation if there’s indeed a case made for it and a path outlined to safely and cost-effectively navigate change.
Social media represents a new frontier in customer engagement. Not only can companies participate in conversations, a dizzying array of tools now help them listen to conversations as well. This isn’t news though. Everyone understands the importance of social media in business right? We all know that customers are demanding that businesses use social media to listen to ideas, engage them in conversations, and also solve their problems when in need. As I’ve often said, the best listeners often make the most engaging conversationalists.
If you follow my work, you’ve probably learned that I’m becoming increasingly fond of web video. As an author, I am fascinated by the different channels and new media opportunities that have been thrust upon the world of book marketing. Over the years, I often considered how to create book-related videos that provided viewers with something beyond a traditional promo or standard author introduction. While important, they weren’t necessarily conducive for social sharing.
I often share my thoughts to help global brands and enterprise organizations. But with this article, I would like to talk to the broader group of business professionals without reference to the size and shape of your company. Here and in many other media outlets, networks, and blogs around the web, social media is one of the most prevalent subjects in business today. While advice is everywhere, advice is becoming a commodity. Insight however, is precious.
It is with great pleasure that I share with you the details of my next book published again by Wiley, What’s the Future of Business: Changing the way businesses create experiences. The book debut at SXSW on March 8th and will be officially available in stores on March 11th.
What’s the Future of Business is not a question. It’s an answer.
Products were once contained by physical ownership and access. To experience a product, you had to buy it or try it. Brands extended beyond the idea of physical products into other types of consumer exposure to companies. Non-customers have always had access to brands outside of the ownership capacity, through advertising, word of mouth, and any other manifestation of a company that didn’t require ownership of their product. But this brand experience lacked depth—you may have seen an ad for something, but without having consumed it as a product, it would be hard to argue that you really experienced it in any meaningful way.
Facebook hit a billion users! Twitter is the new digital water cooler! Youtube is the future of TV! Ok, you get it right? Social media is transformative. So what? Every business that thinks about customer engagement through a technological lens will miss the very thing that will keep them in business for the long-term—the impact of technology on society and behavior and how it opens up new touch points and changes expectations as a result.
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. More so, he humanizes technology’s causal effect to help people see people differently and understand what to do about it. He is an award-winning author and avid keynote speaker who is globally recognized as one of the most prominent thought leaders in digital transformation and innovation.