5 Ways Strategic Social Media Can Help Small Businesses

I often write about enterprise organizations and global brands…essentially big businesses. This is the first in a series dedicated to small businesses.

One of the biggest misconceptions about social media strategy is that only the big brands and enterprise organizations can afford success. The impression is bigger businesses have unlimited resources, people and budgets to execute on all new ideas. This is simply not true. Like in anything, people are focused on their jobs as they exist and anything new that comes along, well, it’s met with prejudice.

Silicon Valley is Not a Place, It’s a Movement…and It Has a Story Behind the Story [video]

Silicon Valley is a flashpoint for innovation and entrepreneurialism. But, what does Silicon Valley even mean these days? Silicon Valley technically spans the area in the southern San Francisco Bay Area including Santa Clara Valley, San Jose and southern East Bay. What Silicon Valley actually refers to in terms of geography seems moot in an economy when the idea of Silicon Valley is much bigger than the square miles it covers on a map. In reality, when people outside of the area think about it, it includes what’s already mentions and spans north on 101 from Mountain View to San Francisco and East to Oakland and then back down the 880 to Fremont. Silicon Valley IS the greater San Francisco Bay Area and as such, the it has a bigger story to tell beyond its geographical boundaries.

The Internet vs. Facebook in 10 Years [infographic]

When we take pause to appreciate where we are, we can truly appreciate just how far we’ve come.

I recently stumbled across an interesting infographic as it made the rounds across the social web recently. Created by bestedsites.com, the graphic visualizes the meteoric rise of the Internet in just 10 years. For example, in 2002, the Internet boasted 569 million users, which represented 9.1% of the world population. In 2012, that number skyrocketed to 2.27 billion at 33% of the world population. Another tremendous stat is the daily time spent online. In 2002 it was only 46 minutes a day (that was probably the time it took to load one web site). In 2012, it’s clocked four hours a day.

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Is Zuckerberg to blame for Facebook’s slumping stock?

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.

Why Brands are Becoming Publishers [video]

Is content still king?

According to Deanna Brown, CEO, Federated Media Publishing, “Content, in the right context, is ultimately king.”

Welcome to the evolution of publishing, where storytelling, advertising, and technology intersect. By having unhindered access to social and mobile media platforms, brands are experimenting with paid, owned, and earned media to reach connected consumers in their channels of relevance. As brands dabble in publishing, traditional marketing and advertising networks are also evolving.

The Perception Gap: what customers want and what executives think they want [infographic]

In February, the team at Pivot released a revealing research report that documented the increasing gap between marketer and customers. I referred to this as the Great Divide or the  “The Perception Gap,” the distance between what customers want in social media and what executives think they want. In collaboration with Barnickel Design, we’ve just released this infographic that visualizes the extent of the perception gap between social consumers and social businesses.

The Hunt for Social Business Value

Guest post by Ashley Furness of Software Advice

When Microsoft announced plans to buy enterprise social network Yammer recently I was a little stunned. The reported $1.2-billion acquisition price tag seemed like a lot for simply replicating social networking functions in the business environment. Would companies really achieve ROI? Or would it be more of a “distraction,” as one user told me?

The New Hollywood: Developing Entertainment for All Screens [VIDEO]

Perhaps you remember Zoolander, Dodgeball and Tropic Thunder? My guest on this episode of Revolution is Mike Rosenstein, producer at Red Hour Films. Owned by Ben Stiller and Stuart Cornfeld, Red Hour Films is a production company that produced these classics and more. To compete for the future of entertainment, Stiller brought Rosenstein in to also lead the development of Red Hour Digital as the Director of Digital Content.

Without a Strategy, There Is No ROI

Guest post by Danna Vetter, VP, Consumer Strategies, ARAMARK - Part 3 in a series

Have you ever started a meeting without an agenda? Driven your car with no destination? How about gotten surgery before diagnosing a need? While some of those options may seem like refreshing changes, it’s not the way you run your business. But that is exactly what it’s like when you start a social media campaign without a strategy that ties to real business needs.

Q: What’s your best advice to social media managers? A: Stop talking about social media


I recently presented at Microstrategy’s iCommerce Summit in Amsterdam on the importance of looking inside to improve how to engage on the outside. Following the event, I was invited to join Peter Gentsch of Big, Michael Buck of Dell, and Andreas Bock of Telekom. The conversation explored the importance of rethinking how businesses approach social media. Rather than driving social media strategies based on just clever ideas, campaigns, soft KPIs, and intangible results, I shared the importance of focusing on the bigger picture. At stake is nothing less than not only the future of social media in your organization, but more importantly, how decision makers recognize and value relationships throughout the customer life cycle.

ABOUT ME

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.

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