Surviving the Future: How to Build a 21st Century Organization

We currently live in a hyper connected world characterized by 24/7 access to global communications, with social networks providing ability to self publish and be heard.  We carry more compute power on smart phones than early computers and possess access to information previous generations could not imagine.  Yet, for many organizations, culture and business processes have not kept up.  While business causal has replaced suits and digital has replaced paper, it is not clear that today’s organizations know how to accommodate the more open, collaborative processes that the Internet has fostered and new cohorts of employees expect.

Many companies came of age with hierarchical structures and command and control leadership.   Boundaries were clear and roles rigid.  Yet, despite vast technological change and shifts in how work gets done, many organizational designs  put in place in the last century are still with us.

What should you do?  The following are some steps HR, Marketing and business leaders should take to change culture and processes and, ultimately, enable their businesses to remain competitive.  Social media and social business are transforming the world of work and the only organizations that will thrive are those that have figured out how to use new technologies to their advantage.

  1.  Devise a plan to intelligently implement virtual work and virtual teams.  Despite the recent controversy, they are not going away!  Co-location is necessary for certain jobs, but many knowledge based workers can work virtually with existing technology.    Virtual workers also have a smaller carbon footprint, organizations save money on infrastructure costs and older workers or those with work/life demands can be accommodated.
  2.  Redesign jobs to be modular and allow workers to utilize skills on projects anywhere in the organization.  This  makes good use of human capital, solves skill shortages and can lead to greater productivity and satisfaction among employees.
  3. Redefine the role of leaders.  Encourage leaders to find ways of engaging and not just be seen as ensconced in their offices behind traditional gatekeepers.
  4. Empower employee collaboration.  Provide employees a seat at the table, get their feedback and listen to their suggestions.  They can provide valuable insights and intelligence about trends, competitors and emerging needs.
  5. Train all employees on new technologies.   Many older adults have embraced social networks.  Don’t assume only the  millennials will get it.
  6. Provide guidelines on social media.  Make sure the rules are clear and consequences for bad behavior spelled out.  Your firm’s reputation and brand may depend on this.
  7. Include clients in networks and make innovations more  collaborative.   Social networks are about relationships and collaboration.   Clients’ voices should be heard. They can help articulate their needs and shape new offerings.

We live in a global, fast paced, information rich and boundary spanning era.  We need to create organizations that reflect this.  Otherwise, our businesses will go the way of the fax machine and rotary phone.  They still exist, but no longer serve the purpose they once did.

What do you think?  Contact us at AndreaG@dccInsights.com or  call us at 914 234 3917 if you need a road map to the future, training or even implementation assistance.  We can help!  We can also be reached on Twitter @digitalcultured.

Does Market Research Still Matter?

In our fast paced digital business climate, immediacy is critical and carefully constructed market research focused on customer wants and needs and large brand tracking studies have been replaced with newer, cheaper and sexier techniques.  While there is a great deal to gain by using digital data and web listening or by engaging in on-line community based conversations, marketers may be throwing out the baby with the bath water.  I am concerned that in the effort to be timely and current, insufficient focus may be given to using the appropriate methodology or to taking the time necessary to gather the right intelligence to make informed decisions.

In the digital era, it has become easier to develop and promote new products/services and to establish a brand or create a buzz.  Barriers to entry for many businesses are low and the increased sophistication of marketing has enabled better targeting.  Yet, clearly there are many cases of businesses failing.  And, while the costs of entry might be relatively low, the cost of failure may still be very high.   Businesses may not be taking sufficient time to understand what clients really need or feel and how this changes over time.  They also may not be putting in the appropriate metrics to measure success.  Thus, when things go wrong they may not have the insights they need to understand what happened or to develop a strategy to ensure future success.  Too many simply move on and pursue the next shinny new object without learning a thing.

In the quest to reduce marketing expenditures, some businesses have forgotten that not everything can be obtained cheaply and that there is often a difference between stated and unstated needs and values.  Could they be missing something critical?  Web analytics provide valuable data, but they do not always provide insights about what drives behavior.   The digital world is full of data and on-line behavior tracking.  But, what creates and sustains brand loyalty and why clients act like they do are often more difficult to discern.

I am not suggesting that research return to the days when insights were only from one-way mirrors or phone based surveys.  I do, however, recommend that a more balanced approach be taken and the right tools employed to gain knowledge.  The optimal combination would be multiple types of data that could enable one to understand the full complexity of market forces and customer requirements.  Most businesses would love to be able to predict customer behavior so that they might act to prevent defection.  Having the means to do this often requires intelligence that cannot simply be gained quickly and through only one channel.

The on-line world certainly allows a level of customer intimacy that did not exist before and it has provided a vast array of data.  But, one should not lose sight of the limitations of the information that is often readily available.    There are costs to failing.  Longitudinal surveys and focus groups, may actually turn out be good investments!

Do You Know Your Brand’s Digital Identity?

Branding is not a new thing.  Governments have long realized the importance of symbols and one can go as far back as the Roman Empire to see the imperial eagle representing the power and glory of Rome.  But while symbols are still important components of brands, things have changed quite a bit in the past few millennia.  While we still use distinct symbols or logos and brands still stand for specific attributes and values, the digital age has definitely changed the game.

In the new collaborative and virtual world we operate in, brand identities are not simply asserted by organizations and individuals; they are co-created and can be quickly developed or destroyed by the masses. In the digital world, brands have expanded into digital identities.  Organizations and individuals have on-line personas.   Unfortunately, many organizations and individuals have limited understanding of how they are perceived nor what is communicated about them.

In the past, political entities and businesses had much greater deal of control over their brands.  They created and nurtured a specific identity, and strived to behave and communicate in ways that were consistent with that identity.  They used paid advertising and public relations and carefully measured the result.    While organizations still use advertising and PR, in the on-line world they can no longer control everything being said or known about them.  Both fans and detractors can publish what they choose and video and other content can easily go viral.

Not being able to totally control brands does not mean abdication.   There are many tools, both free and paid, that enable one to understand what is being said on-line.  From Google Alerts to Radian 6, the level and sophistication of information that can be gleamed can be surprising.  While one cannot prevent negative statements, organizations should monitor the web and be prepared to correct false statements or communicate their own points of view.  Training employees and having them act as brand ambassadors is also a strategy that has been successfully employed by many companies.

Social media tools like Facebook, LinkedIn and blogs reach millions and allow one to communicate and position one’s organization, but they are not the only components of digital identities.   There is a massive amount of data on-line and we all leave trails.  Marketers have been quick to understand the value of this data.  Targeting has become very sophisticated and it is no longer just what is being said on-line, it is also about behavior and networking connections.   Businesses have developed legitimate ways to gain access to data about what individuals or companies purchase, who they know and what they view.   For good or for bad, the openness of the digital world has enabled a great deal of information to be easily obtained.

To be successful, marketers and business leaders need to understand what is available and get the insights they need.  This includes gaining a better understanding of their clients and prospects and assessing how they and their businesses are viewed on-line.   Unfortunately, if organizations do not proactively take control of or help define their digital identities, others may step in and do it for them.   And, if competitive organizations have a clearer view of customers’ needs and actions, they will be in a better position to meet these needs.  Knowledge has always come with power and this is no more evident than in the fast paced digital world we now live in.

The Role of Corporate Values in a Web 2.0 World

 

There is a shift going on in how we use social media and the Web.  In the era of Web 1.0, the goal was to get people’s attention.  To this end, marketers tried many gimmicks to get noticed and we were presented with swirling logos and sexy content.  Content was considered to be king and the rush was on to be entertaining, funny and irreverent.  Big brands saw this as a way they could be perceived as more modern and hip and hoped it would enable them to attract a younger demographic.

 

In the era of Web 2.0 there has been a shift.  While content is still important, collectively there is an over abundance of content.  What has become important are relationships and authenticity.  We as consumers want to be engaged in two-way conversations.  We as employees want to be trusted and have our voices heard.  And, we as members of society want our organizations to be socially responsible and accountable.

 

In a marketplace characterized by increased transparency at one level and scandal after scandal at the other, there is a growing focus on corporate values and corporate social responsibility.  While being financially successful is still considered a virtue, being successful at all costs is not.   We tend to respect those who are successful without losing their core values or exploiting others.  Suddenly after years of turning a blind eye, there is a growing movement to improve working conditions in the China.   One of the most potent lessons of the Occupy Movement is that in the era of social media there are very few places to hide and communities can easily organize and make their voices heard.  If corporations are to be considered people, we need them to behave with a moral compass that weighs corporate profits against societal losses.  

 

While many corporate brand managers have put together compelling marketing communications campaigns extolling their company’s environmental sensitivity, often their organizations maintain too narrow a focus and fail to reflect on the many ways in which their company’s actions affect the world.  While a company’s specific actions speak of their commitment to sustainability and other causes, to truly provide make a difference, concern with one’s impact on society must emanate from employees as well as management.  It needs to be part of the organizational culture and fabric of how things get done.  The recent Libor scandal certainly brought this point home.

 

As we continue to reach out across boundaries and live in an increasing global world, organizations need to ensure that their focus remains broad and that they take full responsibility for what they do.  They must have clear cut values and empower their people to act in a way consistent with those values.  In a recent IBM study, three ways were described for CEOs to empower employees.  The first one of these was “replace rule books with shared belief.  Recalibrate controls and build values employees will live out.”   As IBM and other socially responsible organizations have learned, when shared beliefs reflect things that all of society values, we all benefit.  Relationships are about trust, caring and doing the right thing.  In the era of Web 2.0 that is what we expect and that is what we need!

 

 

 

5 Ways Social Media Can Replicate the Advantages of Main Street

Those that live in small towns know the advantages of frequenting merchants who know their names and what they regularly purchase.  These merchants, mostly small business owners, develop relationships and anticipate needs.  Thus, customers often continue to frequent these establishments, even when strong competitors emerge.  Starbucks adopted this approach in their retail outlets.  They recognized that customers would buy high-priced coffees from baristas who knew their names, how they liked their lattes and who would have the right drink waiting for them upon their arrival.

Such is the power of value added services, relationship marketing and branding.  Most of us are willing to pay a premium for it.  Services tailored to our needs break through the clutter, relationships engender loyalty and strong brands provide us with assurances around quality and intangibles like status. 

Social media and ability of enterprises of all sizes to have an on-line presence, has led to new ways for organizations to create customer intimacy, develop brands and foster loyalty.  While one cannot replace face-to-face relationships, social media can create strong connections among people and vast amounts of on-line data can provide information that traditional merchants could only dream of.  Here are 5 steps to replicate the advantages of the Main Street experience.

  1. Know Thy Customer – On-line loyalty programs can provide information about existing customers; including their preferences, their backgrounds and how they like to buy.  Social media enables two-way communications and relationship building.  Create a loyalty program, understand who your customers are and create a dialog with them.
  2. Use Analytics – Analytic tools provide insights into who buys what from whom, and in which combinations.  Predictive tools enable targeting of customers likely to need specific products or services in the future.  Analytics can provide great competitive advantage.
  3. Listen to Your Customers and the Market – What are people saying about your brand, your products and your competitors?  What will they need in the future?  Join on-line groups and use the free tools that Twitter, Facebook, LinkedIn and other platforms provide to gain insights.
  4. Gather Customer Satisfaction Information – Were customers satisfied with your products and services and how they were delivered?  Would they recommend your business to a friend?  If you do not know these things, find out.  And, be sure to check out what is being said about your business on Yelp or Angie’s list.
  5. Take Actions and Gather Feedback - Respond to what you learn by taking action.   Don’t ignore customer concerns and don’t be afraid to experiment, take calculated risks and ask for feedback.  You will quickly discover what works and what doesn’t.

What is your view?  You can also contact me on-line on Twitter @digitalcultured, Facebook at Digital Culture Consulting and email at AndreaGoldberg@digitalcultureconsulting.com.

Social Business…Why You Should Care

In the past most organizations had clear-cut boundaries and roles were well-defined.  While they had to be responsive to customers, major decisions were left to management and communications with employees and customers were typically one-way.  With the emergence of social media and non-traditional ecosystems,  interactions tend to be two-way and change can be driven by any number of stakeholders, including employees, partners and suppliers.

 In order to thrive in this environment businesses are deploying and using new social tools and taking advantage of the many new business opportunities. Organizations are evolving to be social businesses, which are defined as those that have the strategies and technologies that allow all parts of their ecosystems to be engaged, create value, form relationships and make decisions.   Social business is the latest step in the evolution of business that began with the advent of the Internet and electronic communications.  In these organizations work is accomplished differently and products and services are created and purchased in new ways.   Since social businesses can adapt to their environments, they are well suited to meet the changing needs of their internal and external constituencies. 

 IBM, one of the company’s leading in social business, has identified three distinct characteristics of a social business:

            Engaged—deeply connecting people, including customers, employees, and partners, to be involved in productive, efficient ways.

            Transparent—removing boundaries to information, experts and assets, helping people align every action to drive business results.

            Nimble—speeding up business with information and insight to anticipate and address  evolving opportunities.

 There are many  advantages to becoming a social business.  Internally these organizations often have better business performance, are more efficient, have better insights and  knowledge, are more aware of new opportunities, have better collaboration , more efficient processes and avoid duplication of efforts.  Externally, they can have lower customer care costs, better customer satisfaction and loyalty, lower marketing and sales costs, better brand reputations and lower product development costs.

 It is difficult for any organization to go from being an isolated entity to being social business, although few organizations are really totally isolated any more.  Organizations need to develop the strategies and tools that will enable them to move along this continuum.    They need to go from having an inside out point of view to an outside in point of view and they have must have technologies that enable collaboration and the sharing of insights and knowledge.

 While increasing employee and customer engagement is usually welcome, not every social business initiative will succeed and it is important that an organization experiments with new approaches, learns from mistakes and moves on when something doesn’t work.  Having leaders who are not afraid to take risks is one important step.  Having employees who know how to be digital citizens is another.  Employees must have the training necessary to understand how to behave and to manage their own reputations and that of their employers.

 Although social businesses may be relatively new entities, the number of social business is growing.  A 2011 social business survey by International Data Corporation (IDC) showed that 41% of respondents have some sort of social business initiative underway. What they found, however, is that these projects vary greatly.  They ranged from grassroots bottom-up employee initiatives to sophisticated and strategic social customer engagement programs.

 So while there is no “one size fits all” way to be a social business, the message is clear; if you run a business, you should think about where you are on the continuum from isolation to integration to stakeholder optimization and develop a plan to transform your organization into a social one.   Otherwise your business risks being endangered.

Why Your Business Needs to Be Focused On Social Media: Unlocking Potential and Avoiding Pitfalls

Background

We are in the midst of a social media revolution.  Like the Arab Spring uprisings, where revolutionary leaders used social media to create widespread awareness, support, rapidly communicate with and mobilize supporters, social media is now enabling organizations to do business as never before.  It is increasing collaboration and breaking down barriers between internal organizations and the external world.  It is also fundamentally changing how work is performed and how organizations operate.

Today’s organizations are faced with a business environment that is increasingly global, competitive and fast paced and where disruptive innovation may render existing business models obsolete.  If they do not act quickly and adapt to these changes, they may not survive.  Such was the case of Borders who failed to adjust to the onset of e-books, unlike their main competitor, Barnes and Noble, who came out with the Nook.  Barnes and Noble is still operating while Borders recently shuttered all their stores.  The choice is not whether to adapt to change and implement social media in organizations; rather it is how to best implement it in order to survive in the rapidly evolving business environment.

The influx of digital natives, the increased presence of virtual employees and the prevalence of virtual global teams has made organizations adapt to new labor market realities.    At the same time, social media use is climbing. With around 800 million people around the world using Facebook, more than 25% of all Americans spending time on social media sites, and the majority of the Fortune 500 implementing social media programs, it is clear that the “social media phenomenon” is not just a fad.

Social Media and Organization 2.0

Organizations are learning how to adapt their cultures to employees who can and want to work differently as well as customers who want to buy and be serviced in more inclusive ways.  These changes have impacted all aspects of organizations including recruiting and selection, rewards and incentives, job roles, leadership, and training and development.  It has also become clear that different skills sets will be required to meet the evolving organizational paradigms.  And as employees have more external touch points, employers recognize that new guidelines, polices and training programs must be put in place.

While social medial media has enabled many positive outcomes, such as new approaches for marketing, branding and communications, opportunities for thought leadership, recruitment of hard-to-find skilled candidates, increased employee engagement and better customer  service, it is clear that it has changed expectations of participation and created a loss of employer control.  It requires more transparency and  a reframing of employee personal versus public communications.

The Upside and the Downside

Brands take on new meaning in the age of social media. Employees can be a visible and positive force in this environment and serve as brand ambassadors.  Companies like IBM have been very successful in utilizing their workers to aid their brand.  They demonstrate brand values and deliver upon brand promises and expectations.  But, judgment must be used on social media and there are many cases of employees hurting brands by writing inappropriate things and embarrassing their employers.   Recently, a Philadelphia high school teacher was suspended with pay after she wrote a blog in which in which she spoke harshly about her students saying, “They are rude, disengaged, lazy whiners.  Similarly, an Albuquerque police officer was placed on desk duty after listing his occupation on his Facebook profile as “Human waste disposal.”  Other examples include a police woman posting inappropriate Facebook pictures alongside police insignia, waitresses writing negative things about their customers, and employees defaming supervisors.  And, even a member of Congress, Anthony Weiner, had to resign after tweeting lewd pictures of himself to a young woman.

Without proper training or guidance, employees can unintentionally or maliciously damage organizational reputations, resulting in the loss of customers, revenue and intellectual property.  This behavior can have a negative impact on employee morale, create management difficulties and the inability to recruit top candidates, as well as cause legal issues.  That is why smart organizations are being proactive and trying to understand the readiness of their organizations with respect to social media.  They realize it is critical to have metrics that allow one to understand existing usage among employees, guidelines awareness, etc.  This way they can assess how effective any planned social media implementation will be or measure how successful existing ones are.

The Solution

The solution we developed is PSMOTM – a Program for Social Media Optimization – that is designed to measure the organization’s current status as an entity in the social media context, identify and solve for any competitive weaknesses and optimize its functioning to produce employees who act as brand ambassadors in the social media cultural milieu.Image

The PSMOTM process assesses the eight (8) specific factors that comprise organizational optimization regarding employees’ social media behaviors and brand advocacy.  The assessment process involves quantitative survey research and in-depth qualitative interviews among the organization’s leaders (policy-makers) and “customer-facing” employees.  An organization’s PSMOTM profile is used to determine specific strategies and tactical programs that can be implemented to achieve a more effective set of social media policies to drive better employee selection, retention, leadership, and branding.

For more information about the PSMOTM program, feel free to contact Andrea Goldberg, Ph.D., President of Digital Culture Consulting, LLC. (http://www.digitalcultureconsulting.com/)

The Capacity to Change the Discourse

In the aftermath of the Tucson shootings there has been a lot of discussion about the need for civility in the political arena. And although there has been some dialing back of the rhetoric, not all that much has changed… yet.    And, while I truly doubt that things will ever revert back to the way they were before we had targeted media outlets and social media, I do believe that we are still experiencing growing pains when it comes to our communications options.  I believe that over time we will learn to behave differently.   For it is not simply that we have 24 hews cycles that demand content, it is that we have the option to only listen to folks we already agree with and to join our own communications sub-cultures.   Long gone are the days when unbiased newscasters like Walter Cronkite spoke and a good many of us listened to the “most trusted man in America”.  No one holds this position anymore, whom you trust depends on where on the political spectrum you sit.

I say these things as a self proclaimed media junkie.  Like many others, I have my biases.  I get most of my news on-line, although I read the NY Times and watch cable news as well.  Of course, my favorite source of news is John Stewart and the Daily Show.  He definitely holds up a mirror to what tends to pass as political discourse and we see the hypocrisy and subterfuge reflected back at us.

So why am I optimistic?   I remember the early days of e-mail when we struggled to get the tone right.   We knew how to write business correspondence and we knew how to effectively negotiate a business call, but this new medium was different and somewhere in between. It was informal, yet it was in written form.  I remember recoiling when emails I sent were totally misinterpreted or forwarded to folks that I never intended to see them.  But, that was a long time ago and the business community and I did learn how to handle email and to be appropriate and effective.  I believe we are now in a similar transition period with social  and other new media.

Social media enables conversations.  Yes, it can be the source of vitriolic rhetoric and help stir partisan crowds, but it can also serve as a forum for discussion and an exchange of ideas.  I submit that we are still learning how to use these forums, as well as learning what privacy is and should mean, as well as what we should and should not post.  The consequences of our actions on-line are starting to become more and more apparent and I predict that there will slowly be a shift in behavior.  This will not happen overnight.  There will still be subcultures and inappropriate pictures on Facebook.  But, more of us will start listening to each other and behaving responsibly.  I do believe we are capable of learning and reflection.  None of us want to see an innocent child shot down by a crazed killer.  Fortunately, there are still some things we all seem to be able to agree upon and that, at least, is a start!

And You Think You Can’t Live Without Your Phone Now!

If you are like me, you actually managed to live a good part of your life without the benefit of a cell or smart phone, yet, looking back, you have a hard time imagining how you managed to do so. The ability to have constant communications ability and full access to voice and email seems like a requirement, not just a nice to have. It is hard to believe that we did not have access to this service in the old days when stuck in traffic or late to important appointments.

But as I write this, I realize that most people are still unaware of the full range of possibilities of mobile technology. As the thousands of I-Phone applications attest to, the appetite for mobile services is out there and there are many companies eager to exploit this. And, of course, the social media world is right there capitalizing on this and providing tools for folks to interact. Have you joined Four Square Yet? I have. And recently when I went to Yankee Stadium I was one of 56 people who checked in. Given the size of Yankee Stadium this is not that great a number. But watch this space. The future will be upon on us sooner than we think!

Everyday there are new and exciting applications for mobile technologies. AT&T recently ran a contest on Gowalla co-sponsored by TOMS shoes which required folks to check in at an AT&T outlet or a TOMS shoe outlet. Over 5500 folks entered to win the grand prize. SCVNGR is a location-based social game that launched in 2010. At the time of launch it had already signed over 1,000 locations in the US who were willing to offer freebies and discounts to users. And they are growing rapidly, adding about 25 new enterprises per day. Recently SCVNGR teamed up with Columbia Pictures to have a EAT,PRAY, LOVE game tied in with the movie. This game spanned 26 cities and provided both challenges and special edition badges.

Another location based platform, Whrrl boasts of over 300,000 users. Whrrl has a somewhat different model, focusing on Societies and creating content devoted to these specific groups. Businesses can create Societies and target certain types of individuals that check in to particular types of venues. This is a very effective way to segment an audience and reach folks where they live!

As someone who remembers that much of the early content of the Internet were games, chat rooms and yes, pornography, it is not surprising that the early entrants in the mobile space are in the business to consumer world and have a large element of fun connect to them. But, as we saw with the Internet, the potential for business ties-ins is huge and will continue to emerge. If your business is not considering this space, they should be. Because 10 years from now, I would not be surprised if many businesses felt the same way about mobile that I feel about my smart phone. How did we ever get by without this?!

The Wild Wild West of Social Media

I recently completed a course on Web Analytics. And, although I have been working in the social media field for a while, after spending the time to really understand the full range of tools that are available, I was struck by just how much information can simply be gleamed directly from the web about buyer behavior, one’s own company and one’s competitors. As a marketer and market researcher, I am thrilled by all that I can learn on-line and the diversity of things I can monitor or listen to. But, I have to admit that sometimes it does give me pause.

I remember how much time and effort it took to get data using traditional market research methods. Perhaps one of the good things about that world were that the people we surveyed knew they were being questioned and their answers used for research. Similarly, the people that came to our focus groups knew they were being watched behind the mirror. While this may have been a negative in that we sometimes witnessed contrived behaviors or heard socially desirable response, we erred on the side of informed consent. The world of social media is much different. We observe behavior in a more natural setting. It is almost like we are sitting in someone’s living room just listening in. In the era of reality TV, this does not seem strange. But, the folks in reality TV, for the most part, understand that there are cameras pointed at them. Does the social media using public understand the power of web analytics…I suspect not.

The ability to track behavior and monitor the online conversation is probably greater than most people realize. We gladly accept free Gmail accounts from Google. Do we realize that by doing so we allow them to search through what we are writing? Similarly, we gladly accept free accounts on Facebook and in turn allow ourselves to be searched, advertised to and content analyzed. While we do need passwords to enter our accounts on Twitter and LinkedIn, do we actually expect them to be private.. or do we simply not think about it?

In the direct marketing world, opt in and opt out rules have prevented some of the abuses created by spamming and other practices. I wonder what type of guidelines or laws we will see going forward pertaining to the gathering and use of social media data? Privacy is already a big issue online as the reaction to a recent move by Facebook attested to. I suspect this area will continue to evolve. It will probably take only one malicious high profile action to create a very public call to action. In the era of viral messaging, it does seem that no bad deed stays hidden for too long.

What I hope to do going forward is to use this blog is enlighten folks not only about wide array of marketing and research tools that are out there, but also about the rules or best practices that are evolving over time to bring some structure to the often chaotic social media world. It is not quite the Wild Wild West, but then again, I am not sure all the accoutrements of civilization have arrived either. Please watch this space and let me know what types of things you see on the horizon. I am listening!!