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How Businesses Learn the Value and Impact of New Media: Uh-Oh vs. Aha Moments

In celebration of National Small Business Week

This year, Social Media marketing will gain significant support in resources and investment across businesses of all shapes and sizes.

So what’s new?

Now, a line is being drawn between edglings and underlings. Where we choose to stand affects the presence of our brand and value in new markets and our ability to capture attention where and how it is focused – both online and in the real world,.

On one side of the commerce quandary, business owners will have either flirted with or grasped the new media landscape and how it fits in with conventional touchpoints. On the other side, we have everyone else, those who will witness the possibilities and importance of the social Web via a pivotal “Aha” or “Uh-Oh” moment.

Aha’s will arise when the “consumer” that lives dormant inside each one of us finally awakens. Yes, outside of our business focus, we actively search for products and services. We are, in addition to many other things, consumers as well. We ask friends for recommendations. We research options. We make purchases. And, we share our experiences. Yet, we tend to neglect this useful and invaluable perspective when we operate in business mode. Suddenly everything we see, hear, and say is filtered through the eyes, ears, and voice of someone with a bottom line, responsibilities, goals, and not necessarily purpose and resolve.

Consumers are taking to the social Web to seek and offer advice and direction. Businesses win and lose in those conversations every day and as such, decisions are made with or without us.

Now, the Uh-Oh moment on the other hand, is inevitable and with it, a sense of urgency is thrust upon its unsuspecting victims. This occurs when we suddenly realize that our competitors are unusually succeeding while our revenue flatlines or even worse, declines. Or, depending on circumstances, we suddenly face an eruption of negative commentary and reviews that propagate detrimental experiences or sentiment.

In both cases, new media provides us with the tools and lenses that allow us to find and steer experiences, transactions, and sentiment. It just requires acceptance and dedication to learning, participating, and tracking how the creation of these new social touchpoints contribute to customer acquisition and retention.

Even though we make an official investment in something that’s not only new and uncertain, we expect a return on time, money, and energy. While experimentation is part of the process, dedication to improving our bottom line is something that doesn’t lose significance – nor should it. Therefore, our efforts must be designed with intention, purpose, and value in mind. Everything is measurable and as such, what it is we want to measure must not only be defined, but also balanced with the interests of the communities in which we participate.

The dichotomy between intention and outcome is defined by our actions and words. Ergo, the experiences we induce are measured by the reactions of those we engage.

Once we decide to focus our efforts and ultimately how, when and where we socialize service, marketing, communications, sales, and community development, essentially, every part of our business, we begin the beginning of our future.

This is your time to become the expert you seek. By answering our own questions, we can participate in social networks in ways that boost visibility, attract customers, and empower a community of customers and advocates to create new business opportunities, improved customer service, and also a more valuable service offering as tuned by our stakeholders.


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Please consider reading my new book, Engage!

Get Putting the Public Back in Public Relations and The Conversation Prism:

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64 COMMENTS ON THIS POST To “How Businesses Learn the Value and Impact of New Media: Uh-Oh vs. Aha Moments”

  1. Thank you so much for that nicely written piece of text.Why do you need to hire the “best SEO company”? Well, why not hire the best? I mean, if you're going to do something, you might as well do it right. I asked Matt Cutts, and he said that if he was going to hire a SEO company, he'd hire one that used conservative strategies. Bergstrom-seo is one of the top SEO companies because they don't do anything that could get you blacklisted. They focus on adding content to your website, on-page SEO (fixing internal linking, page titles,etc,) and getting links back to you. They don't put any outbound links on your site. No outbound links means you can't get blacklisted.


    Prasen Dutta a community member at Search Engine Optimisation Consultants

  2. Techwatch says:

    Its the interactive part that has made it so popular, people talk back to their TV but it doesn't do any good,

  3. Nehal Kazim says:

    You make an interesting point with the correlation between intention and outcome. The way I'm looking at intention are as objectives. When that objective is clearly defined, it's much easier to determine if the social media efforts are worth the time and resources.

    With the addition of raw passion for the business, it becomes effortless to execute on social media related tasks. Here's my article on the effect that passion has on the success of social media initiatives:

    Thanks for the article Brian!


  4. Great article, Brian!

    Best point: The experiences we induce are measured by the reactions of those we engage.

    Very true.

    LR Hand

  5. Rachel Vincent says:

    To add to this, I think we need to be willing to step our there and take risks, whether as consumers or businesses. If we fail, we fail fast. The other half of that is that we need to forgive those around us, consumers or businesses, or little fails in order to allow the freedom for people to feel safe exploring, going out on a limb, and possibly failing.

  6. Halina says:

    My Aha moment became so much more “operational” after having read “Putting the public back into public relations”. Read it in one day (yesterday :-)) – will be benefiting from the read for a long time, I feel. Engage is next. Thank you thank you thank you.

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