When it comes to social media or social business this is the article of the year. Written by Dave Evans who in 2007 wrote Social Media Marketing: An Hour a Day. It’s an article I wish I had written. In it he makes the case for dropping the term ‘social’ since being connected has become (and will be more and more) the central point from which we depart. That is to say, we must recognise that ‘everyone’ is connected. I understand that in an African context this is not quite the case but it is changing rapidly – half the continent will be connected by 2016, so this has a lot of merit.
He closed the article with this: As you review your marketing plans, consider dropping “social” and assume that everyone is connected. Assume that your “ability to interrupt” is replaced by your “opportunity to participate.” Turn and look back at your entire business and ask yourself: “If I ran my business based on the assumption of transparent participation, what would it look like?” The answer is probably “Your business, five years from now.” So, no time like today to get ready for the future.
This actually simplifies matters so instead of asking “how do we do social media?” the more meaningful question is asked “how do we do business in the modern economy?”.
Its thrilling to see the creative solutions that come to the fore when that question is asked with an understanding of what an always connected, always on world means. It’s a revitalising experience for a company. There is a chance to move away from the dreary day to day meandering to the excitement of doing something new, something courageous, something that gets a company participating with its community.
Even a casual study of business since the turn of the century will tell you that it is innovation that is the answer to any slump in business or simply in remaining competitive. Our customers today own the media and they have all the choices and options and they hold the communication channels.
I’m all for dropping the ‘social’ label and making it all about the new thinking for a new marketplace. In upcoming blogs I’ll get into more detail of exactly how this will look.