Digital influence is one of the most fascinating and widely debated trends in social media today. Whether or not you agree with the idea of assigning a score to individuals based on their actions in popular social networks, the reality is that Pandora’s Box has already been open. People check the scores like investors check stock prices. Brands reward “influential” consumers with products and services. Employers consult scores to lure seemingly more qualified candidates. This is already happening and as a result, there’s much to learn.
The onslaught of real-time social, local, mobile (SoLoMo) technology is nothing short of overwhelming. Besides the gadgets, apps, social networks and appliances that continue to emerge, the pace of innovation is only outdone by the volumes of data that each produce. Everything we share, everywhere we go, everything we say and everyone we follow or connect with, generates valuable information that can be used to improve consumer experiences and ultimately improve products and services.
“The World Wide Web is the universe of network-accessible information, an embodiment of human knowledge.” - Tim Berners-Lee, Web inventor, founder, the World Wide Web Consortium (W3C), source
The Millennial or Generation Y has the world abuzz. This generation is not only changing how businesses sell and what they sell, they’re also changing how businesses work. Millennials are indeed the first truly digital generation but they’re aren’t the only group with digital DNA. Generation Y, those that follow X and Generation Z behind them are rising fast. They too see the world differently and already represent a significant economic force in the world. In the United States, Generation Z is said to control up to $30 billion in spending. They’re connected. They’re informed. And, they’re practically immune to traditional sales and marketing programs established to serve the generations before them.
The importance of establishing your brand in the era of Digital Darwinism cannot be overstated. Digital Darwinism occurs when technology and society evolve faster than one’s ability to adapt. Every brand is vulnerable, but no business is too big to fail or too small to succeed.
Guest post by Sarah Evans (PRsarahevans), chief evangelist, Tracky, social correspondent at Sarah’s Faves and author of [RE]FRAME: Little Inspirations For A Larger Purpose
The majority of businesses aren’t run efficiently and employees lack the tools and equipment necessary to do their jobs. Quite a wide sweeping statement, I know. But I’ve also been in the trenches. And I realize it’s not for lack of trying. I’ve worked with companies who hired consultant after consultant to help with productivity recommendations, workflow suggestions and overall team building — all in the name of doing better business. These investments never quite had the impact leadership hoped for.
Photo taken 11/19/12 using an iPhone5 at St Kilda Beach, Melbourne Australia
The Times They Are A-Changin’
Come gather ’round people
Wherever you roam
And admit that the waters
Around you have grown
And accept it that soon
You’ll be drenched to the bone
If your time to you
Is worth savin’
Then you better start swimmin’
Or you’ll sink like a stone
For the times they are a-changin’.
- Bob Dylan
Millennials aren’t only disrupting the consumer landscape, they’re changing the game for human resources. To say that the digital lifestyle of Gen Y is unique is an understatement. How they express themselves and what’s important to them is much different than the generations before them. As such, how employers need to manage and recruit this new generation of connected employees requires much more than a LinkedIn or traditional recruitment approach. Millennials are expressing themselves in a unique way, which is more like Facebook than that of a digital CRV or online resume. Did you know that the average age of a LinkedIn user is 43? It was just a matter of time until a new community arose to cater to Gen-Y.
Content Context is King!
Social media ushers in an era of contextual relevance that finally trumps content as king. Don’t get me wrong, content is important. After all, without it, what would people read, watch, interpret, remix and share? But without context, content is simply a message or story trying to find a home. In social networks, people stitch together social networks based on their relationships, interests, and aspirations to personalize their online experience. Doing so creates a network where, in theory, information that’s shared and the connections that come and go are material to everyone involved.
Understanding the investment process in Silicon Valley used to require membership to a very exclusive club of investors, plugged-in media and experienced entrepreneurs. Adeo Ressi sought to change that. After starting seven successful companies that created over $2 billion in shareholder value he was faced with diminishing equity with each new company he would start. In 2007, Ressi unveiled the anonymously backed TheFunded.com in 2007 to shine a light on the situation to improve the human and financial relationships between investors and entrepreneurs in Silicon Valley and around the world.
Brian Solis is principal at Altimeter Group, a research firm focused on disruptive technology. A digital analyst, anthropologist, and futurist, Solis has studied and influenced the effects of emerging technology on business, marketing, and culture. Solis is also globally recognized as one of the most prominent thought leaders and published authors in new media. His new book, What's the Future of Business (WTF), explores the landscape of connected consumerism and how business and customer relationships unfold and flourish 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. Prior to End of Business, Solis released Engage, which is regarded as the industry reference guide for businesses to market, sell and service in the social web.