SXSW is a Festival –Not Just A Conference

Is SXSW for Business or just a Boondoggle? That’s the wrong question. More than ever, I heard more folks debating if SXSW was good for business, or just a big party. Those who have attended the event for over a decade swear the soul has been stolen, and local Austin denizens often leave town and rent their place on AirBnb for a pretty penny, there’s no shortage of critics. Looking closer, the components for a unique petri dish are present, including: 1) Big brands, 2) software vendors who are trying to sell to them, 3) device manufactures who are trying to reach influencers, 4) digerati and A-List tech celebs (which means they are D-List celebs in real life), 5) mainstream media … Continue readingSXSW is a Festival –Not Just A Conference

Quest for the Digital Fountain of Youth Awakens “After Life Technology”

Imagine your great-grandchildren interacting with your likeness on a daily basis, all derived from your Facebook media, Vine videos and your personality from your Tweets. Humans, both poor and rich have continued to seek out the greatest quest since the dawn of mankind; how do we stay alive in this world?  Fortunately, (or not fortunately) new technologies are emerging both now, including some fascinating developments by leading think tanks, including Stanford. [After Life Technology emerges to store, replicate, and even reanimate the deceased based on the digital data we’re emitting every day] Whether you find it creepy, narcissistic, or a thoughtful way to connect with future-generations, this is a choice we’ll all be forced to reckon with. Should we shutter … Continue readingQuest for the Digital Fountain of Youth Awakens “After Life Technology”

The Difference between Strategy and Tactics

The purpose of this post is to clearly delineate the distinct differences between strategy and tactics, and show how they work in tandem for your organization. Often, we use the terms strategy and tactics interchangeably and in a haphazard manner.  When probing at online definitions and dictionaries, they often share many of the same characteristics, making them difficult to differentiate.  Rather than debate Greek military etymology, Sun Tzu philosophy, or latest publications from the Harvard Business Press, here’s a simple way to look at strategy and tactics by their associated actions: [The difference between strategy and tactics: strategy is done above the shoulders, tactics are done below the shoulders] While a tweet-worthy catch phrase, this metaphor risks glib over-simplification. To … Continue readingThe Difference between Strategy and Tactics

The Four Elements of Career Management in Business

Successful career professionals manage four strategic elements in their career, I invite your comments to add to the discussion. Like managing your own money, business, or family, careers need a strategic approach.   Many business folk get over focused in their current job, unable to see the areas of defencieny in the other areas of their career, and some over-focus on education and are unable to convince employers they have the experience.  The savvy business person has balance across at least four elements. While I’m not a career coach, these observations are just mine from interacting with a broad set of executives, leaders, and up and comers.  I’ve found that they manage four elements:  1) Education (which doesn’t just mean … Continue readingThe Four Elements of Career Management in Business

Breakdown: Corporate Social Media Team

The purpose of this post is to be a living document and industry reference on the topic of social media teams, as part as my ongoing coverage of corporate social media programs.  This perspective stems from industry research and deeper client engagements, see other ‘breakdown‘ posts. Business Needs: By definition, social business requires transformation within a company, resulting in leadership, program management, and a team to see this change through.  In most cases, we see this team as a centralized resource that’s often cross-functional working closely with a number of corporate functions as well as business units ranging from product teams, geographies, the field, and departments.  Without this team, the company will struggle to scale as different business units launch … Continue readingBreakdown: Corporate Social Media Team

Breakdown: Social Media Workflow, Process, Triage

Left: Altimeter Research found that most companies lack a formalized process –and even out of the advanced, only 76% had a process in place, read the full report on Social Readiness. The purpose of these breakdown posts is to serve as an industry reference as the space advanced to optimization and performance.  The assumption is that a company is forming a Center of Excellence or ruling body, or has recently done so before deploying this key component. Needs: Companies desire to be efficient –not having a workflow puts company at risk Like our bodies, cities, and corporations, all complex organisms have a natural process and order that helps to reduce inefficiencies and increases the end goals.   So what if … Continue readingBreakdown: Social Media Workflow, Process, Triage

Breakdown of a Dedicated Social Media Engagement or Command Center

Left: Dell’s Social Media Command and Listening Center, Austin Texas. The purpose of this post is to be an industry reference for this social business use case, please leave comments with further additions. Many a year ago, I worked at a web hosting company that had a Network Operations Center (NOC) that looked like NASA’s mission control.  Enclosed in a glass ‘fishbowl’ the 20-50 staff, systems, training, technology were all used in conjunction to support the network traffic of the customers websites, see Google images.  The “NOC” was externally packaged and marketed as a cutting edge feature of a top performance center, touted on customer tours at HQ, and had internal mystique and prestige of those who were there. Today, … Continue readingBreakdown of a Dedicated Social Media Engagement or Command Center

A Taxonomy of Tech Bloggers –Who Will Lead Beyond The Golden Age?

In order to understand the movement in the ever-changing tech blog space, let’s dissect the market to identify trends. Whether folks agreed or disagreed, the assertion that Tech Blogs are evolving from the Golden Era to the next, continues to resonate as a healthy discussion. I saw responses from many of the blog management teams (Techcrunch, Mashable, RWW, VentureBeat, BoingBoing, and more) both agreeing and disagreeing, as well as traditional journalists at Wired chiming in. Recap: Four Trends Why Blogs Are Evolving Out of Golden Age In the previous post, it was identified there are four distinct trends why tech blogs are changing: Corporate acquisitions stymie innovation. Tech blogs are experiencing major talent turnover. The audience needs have changed, they want: faster, … Continue readingA Taxonomy of Tech Bloggers –Who Will Lead Beyond The Golden Age?

Trend: Some Community Management Activities to be Outsourced

As we continue to conduct research in the social business arena, it’s important to point out the trends in the space. In particular, a role that is so key to success for customer engagement (marketing and service) is the challenging (and often under-appreciated) community manager role.  Lately, I’ve found a few trends that community managers (and their bosses) need to be aware of, as the space continues to grow. Third Party Community Management Specialists On The Rise: Here’s what we’ve been seeing based on a few briefings and interactions I’ve taken in the past few months:  Recently, I spoke to a group of community managers at Weber Shandwick (invited by Stephanie Agresta) a communications agency, they work closely with their clients … Continue readingTrend: Some Community Management Activities to be Outsourced

Matrix: Challenges and Opportunities Abound for Social Media Management Systems

Just 6 quarters in and this space continues to heat up with nearly 30 vendors.  We’ve done over four due diligence calls with VCs in this space in last 30 days, and Altimeter are helping a couple of brands short list their vendors for RFP inclusions –brands know they need an enterprise solution. This scope of this post is for the pure play vendors and does not include the numerous entrants that will explode into this space from the incumbent software category.   To help move the industry forward, here’s my perspective on the space, all which I’m telling buyers as well as investors. Matrix: Challenges and Opportunities Abound for Social Media Management Systems Strengths: -VC Funding for Rapid Growth … Continue readingMatrix: Challenges and Opportunities Abound for Social Media Management Systems