Part of an ongoing series dedicated to small businesses
As you read this, the business landscape is shifting right under your company’s foundation. How customers make decisions, how they discover, communicate, and share, how they influence and are influenced, is evolving considerably. In fact, customer behavior is not only changing, it’s fragmenting and opening the door to new touch points. Your business will now have to compete for the customers you know and additionally, a new breed of customers that you need to know. And, to earn their attention and ultimately their loyalty, you will need to better understand the top technology trends and how they’re impacting customer behavior.
As an analyst, that’s the questions that I’m asked over and over again. In fact it was the same question CNN recently asked in its story last week on Zuckerberg, Facebook, and Wall Street. It’s a fair question to ask and CNN’s Heather Kelly wrote a balanced and thoughtful piece on the subject. While it’s only one of many discussions likely to happen, the truth is that Facebook must focus on its business, employees, and now also investors…regardless of technicalities, follies, insider discussions, etc.
Social media is a global phenomenon indeed. Certainly Facebook, Twitter, Google+, in their own way, each make the world a much smaller place. The distance between any two people is shrinking as the number of network connections continues to proliferate. I’m sure you’ve heard at one point or another, that the distance between two people in an offline world is six degrees. In a recent Facebook study for example, the average degree of separation between two people in the network is only 4.74. When focused on one country specifically, such as the U.S., Sweden, or Italy, among others, the number of hops between two people further shrinks to 3.74.
Marketers, educators, parents, it seems that almost anyone in the Generation X or Boomer demographic is scratching their heads trying to figure out Generation Y aka the Millennial. After all, it’s the first generation to seemingly possess digital prowess as part of their DNA. And, it’s the first generation to receive both a birth certificate and a social profile or presence upon delivery into this world.
Digital Darwinism is a phenomenon when technology and society evolve faster than the ability to adapt. And, it threatens rigid and traditional practices everywhere. It’s no longer just survival of the fittest, but also survival of the fitting. Businesses must earn relevance and to do so requires much more than adoption of the latest technologies or launching endeavors in the latest social or app flavor of the month.
I am not a social media expert and my new book, The End of Business as Usual, is not about Social Media. If you’re looking for the Top 10 ways your business can succeed on Facebook or Twitter, secrets to attracting more followers or likes, creating viral videos, or the best practices for creating infographics that over simplify the complex world of business, save your money. There is no shortage of useful books and resources out there.
Part 16 in an ongoing series that serves as the prequel to my new book, The End of Business as Usual…
It’s a new year and a new set of predictions to set goals and expectations for 2012. I won’t bother you with the top 10 emerging social networks or apps to focus time and resources. Nor will I gaze in the crystal ball to reveal the five secrets to viral marketing and user/customer acquisition. Instead of adding my forecasts to the endless sea of debatable prophesies, I chose a more aspirational path.
Guest post by Ekaterina Walter, a social media strategist at Intel. She was recently elected to serve on the Board of Directors of Word of Mouth Marketing Association (WOMMA). Follow her on Twitter
Guest post by Todd Blecher, Communications Director, The Boeing Company
Much wisdom did Yoda accumulate. But experience with social media I think not the Jedi had. Yoda’s insistence that we “do, or do not. There is no try,” to brand journalism does not apply.
When it comes to brand journalism the instruction should be “Try. There is no do or do not.” In fact, since April, 2010, when we transformed www.boeing.com into a brand journalism platform, we’ve been all about trying. We started with modest goals and walk-then-run approach that has been essential to sustainable success.
During the planning of the upcoming Pivot Conference, I’ve been asked many questions about what it is, what it isn’t, and why the need for another conference. Most importantly, I’ve been asked more often than not, “What is our story?” I think that’s a great question. So, I took a moment to write the story for the Pivot Conference and while I was sharing it with the team, I thought that I would also share it with you here. Why? First, for those considering the event, it may help answer your questions. Second, as your business continues to explore new media, this story arc could serve as an outline for internal planning and development. Hopefully some of the free research we published will also help you.
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.