I. See. You.

“Sawubona. The Zulu greeting. Translation: I see you.”

These words were the first to come out of Chris Brogan’s mouth at the 2010 Communicators Conference in Portland, Oregon last week.

Welcome to web 2.0.

“Social media is the preacher of common sense,” Brogan said. Ultimately, social media has come down to personalization. Each person ponders what can social media do for me?!

Brogan captures this change in eight parts:

1)    Velocity: Ten years ago, how long could a company wait before addressing a situation? A day? A weekend? Now, if you fail to address a situation within two hours, you are suspected of hiding something. As communication channels evolve, we will continue to be held accountable at even a faster rate.

2)    Mobility: How far away is your cell phone? My guess is less than ten feet. Handheld devices are replacing computers as the primary source for information. Therefore, it is important to be aware when sending an e-mail; no one with a handheld device will have the patience to read a 500-word message. Social media forces us to be deliberate.

3)    Listening: Listening to people is so passé. We now must listen FOR people. Marketing is no longer a local business. Instead of demographics, we must focus on psychographics. Participants of social circles want a relationship with an organization. By doing so, an opportunity for loyalty is made.

4)    Tribes: When you think of 140 characters, what comes to mind? Twitter, maybe? How about the text message, the originator of the 140-character message. Simply put: Do not get attached to Twitter. We, as a culture, are always moving on to the next big thing. Right now, privatized networks seem to be on the rise.

5)    Outposts: Stay one step ahead of the game. It seems pretty logical to do. Simply go to your target audience. Having a fun web presence is one thing, but make sure you spend time where the people are. To be aware of a target audience, it is smart to comprehend their thought process.

6)    Human Business: Society demands educated salespeople. If you work at a bookstore, we expect you to read books. If you are a waiter, I hope you know food. Customers want to be able to share a first hand experience with someone. And you are that someone!

7)    Sharing: Customers love images (http://t imetogetstarted.wordpress.com/2009/04/08/video-vs-text/). We don’t care if they are professional, just give us something to gaze at. If you’re on a budget, buy a flip cam. Make a movie. Change the way you connect with your audience!

8)    New Currencies: There are some things that money can’t buy. Attention and trust. The two aspects all businesses are trying to grasp. Much of the return on income is not measured in cash. Instead, it is measured in trust and loyalty. Our culture buys from people that we like.

Seems simple, right? Brogan supplies us with a two hour daily routine to help get in the game. 30 minutes should be spent monitoring social media, an hour participating on people’s social media, and 30 minutes publishing in different formats on social media.

Remember, it isn’t about how many followers someone has; clients primarily care about relationship building and cash flow.

So, I ask, how many people do you see?

— Jeremy Liebman, Account Supervisor

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