Tag: Cluetrain

The (Traditional) Media Delusion

Digital Strategy, Social Media10 Comments

If you’ve been following the #socadl hashtag on Twitter the last week or so you would have seen some ranting directed at mainstream journos hating on social media.

The most recent of these came in the Sunday Mail, where tweeting was compared to ‘mind-farting’ and social media is enabling a generation of rudeness and selfishness.

Clearly these are people with no idea about social media and how it works. All they see is what they want to see.

And it’s understandable why.

The power of traditional media is predicated on the fact that the historically, the barriers to entry to become a publisher and thus be heard are insanely high and that being a journalist meant having exclusive access to stories as well as some talent to write. This scarcity meant that you could only find news that the publishers deemed worthy.

The emergence of new technologies including social media, however, has seen this power gradually shift from traditional media publishers to the hands of the people. These tools mean that everybody now has the capacity to be both a publisher and a journalist –  take this blog, for example.

The way we find and access the news has also changed. Instead of waiting for the morning paper or a TV broadcast to tell us the news, we can now find out what is happening anywhere around the world wherever and whenever we want. (More on this in my next post)

This scares the hell out of most traditional media outlets because we no longer rely on them solely to tell us what’s going on. They no longer control the news cycle as it now happens 24/7. In fact, you can expect the number of stories that break on social media to grow.

Traditional media is deluding itself by thinking that social media is irrelevant and/or dangerous. The very fact that these stories are becoming more frequent points to this very fear.

However, the revolution is happening with or without them and if they are to survive they must rethink their attitude toward social media and see it for the opportunity it is to reach out and actually interact with their audience, and not for the negative hype. For every offensive Facebook page, there are a dozen more that are genuinely useful and advance thought and conversation.

That’s right, conversation. Because that’s something traditional media by by being the very definition of broadcaster has very little concept of.

To quote the Cluetrain Manifesto, “markets are conversations”. You only need to look at the furore surrounding the BP and Nestle’s recent disasters to know that social media is where that conversation is happening today.

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Holiday Reading List 2009

Uncategorized6 Comments

Amidst the chaos leading up to the holiday break, I thought I’d sneak in this quick post.

Aside from spending time with family and friends (not to mention spoiling my son rotten), one thing I’m really looking forward to these holidays is settling in for some R&R to rejuvenate, consolidate and build on my thinking for 2010 by catching up on some reading.

Call me old-fashioned, but while blogs and podcasts are an integral part of my daily life, there’s still no better way to really wrap your head around a topic than reading a book. To that end, here are a few I’m looking forward to sinking my teeth in these holidays:

  1. Crush It!: Why NOW Is the Time to Cash In on Your Passion by Gary Vaynerchuk
    No one is more passionate about what they do than Gary Vee. He’s the guy who turned his passion for wine into a multi-million dollar enterprise by harnessing the power of social media and engaging his community.
  2. Socialnomics: How social media transforms the way we live and do business by Erik Qualman
    Picked this up a few months back. Erik Qualman is the guy behind the Social Media Revolution video set to the tune of Fat Boy Slim’s Right Here Right Now. That video has gone on to be a staple of my presentations so I have high hopes for his books.
  3. Web Analytics 2.0: The Art of Online Accountability and Science of Customer Centricity by Avinash Kaushik
    Google’s Analytics Evangelist’s latest book on why in this new age of marketing, it’s not enough to have a gut feeling about your customers. The web has given us access to so much data and knowledge about our customers. We need to figure out how to use it.
  4. Outliers: The Story of Success by Malcolm Gladwell
    One that slipped through the cracks. I’m a huge fan of Malcolm Gladwell and I’ve been hanging out to read this for awhile. Mitch Joel calls him a rock star, and you won’t get any arguments from me.
  5. The Cluetrain Manifesto: 10th Anniversary Edition
    Another one that slipped through (albeit 10 years ago). I’ve heard so much about it but never actually got around to reading it.
  6. Escape from Cubicle Nation: From Corporate Prisoner to Thriving Entrepreneur by Pamela Slim
    Recommended by Seth Godin. Enough said.

And if you’re still looking for more to read on the digital marketing side of things, make sure you check out Six Pixels of Separation by Mitch Joel and Trust Agents by Chris Brogan and Julien Smith. I’ve just finished these and they are great primer for any marketer thinking about getting started or even those well immersed in the digital space.

Happy holidays!

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