Thursday, April 29, 2010

Patience and Passion by Gary Vaynerchuk

After Gary Vaynerchuk took over his family business, Shopper’s Discount Liquors, he rebranded the whole thing. He launched a retail website and started one of the most successful social media campaigns in the history. With the idea of his store  as Wine Library and his Video-Blog Wine Library TV he was able to boost his revenue from $4 million to $60 million.

At the Web2.0 Expo he gave a 15min talk explaining the keys to his success: "Patience and Passion". No other talk concentrated the essence of social media and how to succeed with it as good as this one. Luckily his very inspiring talk  is available at TedTalks and on Youtube.

Take the 15min off your launch brake and watch this video right after the page break. It will change the way you look on social media for ever...

Tuesday, April 27, 2010

keep the fire burning

I am currently reading a few books about social media and the actions companies should take. I will share my thoughts on those in some reviews on this blog soonish, stay tuned. So long, there was one chapter in the book speak human by Eric Karjaluoto I would like to share with you. The sub-chapter is called "Staring a fire" and it says:

The part you probably don't want to hear is that little of this [Success with Social Media] comes for free. Some combat this by cutting corners, piece mealing efforts, or employing unproven partners whose sole benefit is price. I assure you someone can always offer a lower price; most times you get what you pay for.
This piecemeal approach to marketing can obstruct a company's efforts. Many are eager to create a one-off with hopes that it will prove a catalyst for change. This is hardly ever the case, and often results in frustration as sporadic efforts tend to bear little fruit. With this in mind, I ask you to instead look at such efforts as ongoing.
The analogy I liken this to is one of lighting a fire. Most small organizations put countless hours and resources into collecting dry kindling, finding matches, and getting it started, only to walk away once a small flame takes hold. A week, month, or year later they return to find that their fire has burnt out, and needs to be restarted. So they begin again, hoping for something different, only to repeat the process ad infinitum.
Fires need perpetual attention to grow. Once you have it going, the hardest part is over; from there you need to stoke it from time to time and add some dry wood when necessary. It's not hard, bit does require consistent attention. By keeping at it like this, you can build a roaring fire. If you're lucky, it might even turn into a wildfire, bigger than you ever anticipated. The trick is to keep going.
"Speak Human", Page 259, Chapter 23  

Thursday, April 22, 2010

Get your time right

When we talk about Social Media we usually talk about private usage, we see people "hanging around" in networks for hours and ages. They update their friends on daily issues via mobile phones, notebooks and netbooks from work, school, home. This is a huge amount of information, especially modern companies need to deal with, if they want to offer good and up to date costumer support these days (e.g. SixtUk, Dell, Blackberry).

Now small and mid size enterprises get nervous: "How do I achieve this kind of support without spending hundred and thousands of Euro/Dollar each month on social media customer support?"

Monday, April 19, 2010

Listen to your mom

Social Networking is communication, just straight down its bases. The bases your mom told you when you were four years old. In case she didn't (or you forgot as more and more some people do) the rules are:
  • be nice
  • share
  • don't steal
  • help others
  • listen
  • be patient
  • don't yell
  • no fighting
  • be thankful
  • apologize when you caused trouble
  • and eat your vegetables

If you want to be successful in Social Networking I have one advice:
Listen to your mom!

Friday, April 16, 2010

stay disconnected

This Monday I talked about the Social Media Landscape. In there I mentioned in half sentence that "Most of the Media Sharing Platforms allow similar techniques [as Social Networks] by now but it isn't their main purpose." without explaining myself. What I meant with this are all the ways to follow the updates other do on their accounts. For example you can "subscribe" to a users on flickr and youtube. When ever said user is now uploading new content you'll be informed about this. This allows you to stay connected.

Well, kinda. If you are a member of as many platforms as I am (I counted almost 20 I was able to remember by hard a few month ago, since then it grew) you are not logged into each one permanently, checking or updates all the time. This is why so many of the Media Sharing Platforms allow the users to connect with Facebook or Twitter nowadays. And on first sight that sounds like the long wanted feature we were all missing: connect everything with everything and everyone and all the time.

Monday, April 12, 2010

Social Media Landscape

One term I hear a lot lately is "social media". From what I understand marketing people use this term to describe "everything but classic advertising in the internet". One big problem I have with the term and the discussion around it is that people use it in various contexts describing various aspects of it and making it look like "the big picture". In my opinion "social media" can't be understand as one big thing (like "mass media") working in one certain way with one set of rules.

I rather see a "Social Media Landscape" of various tools, ways to share or publish, connect and interact. And from what I see the rules differ between the areas in this landscape. But you can't adapt to the rules for this area when you don't know where you are. So lets start by looking at what this landscape looks like as of today.

Tuesday, April 6, 2010

Why Google Wave will never replace email while social networks already did

Almost a year ago Google published their "next big thing": Google Wave. And as an technique enthusiast I was psyched from the first day I saw the presentation video. I pictured all the ways this tool is going to change the world and how awesome everything would be. For those who don't know it, Google Wave is an online chat-collaboration-sharing tool. It was developed by the smart guys who came up with Google Maps. They were basically freaked out the way people use mails today and thought about "what would it look like if we would design mail today?". And that is what they did.

Besides some performance issues and missing feature Google Wave is quiet there, you can use it (drop me a line if you need an invite..!), heck I even use it at work. It is a great collaboration tool. But it won't replace mail. Sure it is still young and the developers said themselves that it will takes ages until it would do so. But standing here today, seeing what it is, I am totally sure: it will never replace email! Google Wave won't replace it for one simple reason: Email already got replaced!