I have been going through an interesting phase in my life lately, one where you feel the pressure to conform to what others think you should do, or they disapprove of what you do. I’ll state upfront, I’m not a conformist, that also tells you things most of the time, don’t go the way I would have them. If conforming will make those haters, or the opposition happy, the question that begs to be asked in my head is, why? What is it their afraid of, or disapprove of? It’s usually motivated by some deep need to control the world around them. I’m generalizing of course, but my experience tells me the motive is typically control, which normally comes from a lack in their life somewhere, something not understood, which leads to the fear of loss on some level.
These people typically, are those closest to you, the ones you thought you could trust, the ones you thought would support you, the ones you thought you could count on if things got tough. I’ll state here for clarity, I WAS WRONG! It turns out, everything is about them, and has very little to do with you. You….are merely a stimulant that triggers the fear of loss, that fear of KAOS, that fear of losing control.
I’m not complaining, I’m hurting, but not complaining. The world around us is not interested in building character, or change, it’s only interested comfort, getting more stuff. Most are only interested in being comfortable, but I’m convinced that state doesn’t do anything to make the world a better place. In my opinion, it is no different than doing nothing, and the price of doing nothing is much higher than failure.
Stepping out, not complying, has it’s price. It’s entirely possible you will have to find a new community of friends to be with, people that are more like-minded with your view of the world, and in my case business. It sounds harsh doesn’t it. This is the time where you find out how committed you are to what you are doing, do you believe it is important that you must do what you do. Only you can answer the question, will you conform or follow your dream?
- The Future Of Business – We’ve All Got The Industrial Age Disease (owengreaves.com)
- Destabilizing the bullying power structure (sethgodin.typepad.com)
There is this feeling that nothing is going to change much, that business as we know it is going to carry on, and the online commerce world will just be like someone who sits on the bench. Someone who comes in adds a few extra dollars during the low points in the game of business. The truth is, the opposite is happening, advancements and innovation is growing faster than any one person can keep up with. Online commerce is and has become the de facto standard for generating revenue, the ugly works still needs to be done, but it’s more likely to be automated for the most part.
Business owners are struggling big time with letting the customer have some of the control, letting the customer tell the business owner what they want and they had better deliver. If they don’t deliver, people will look for what they want elsewhere. Gerd Leonhard coined it, “Proudly Found Elsewhere”. The safety net of control is broken, you see it everywhere, but big business is fighting tooth and nail to maintain that control. The future of doing business online is about reducing control, we will have to reduce control to get more share in the marketplace. Those who resist will find themselves wondering what happened and how did they miss it, people will get fired for not seeing the shift.
The music industry is not willing to reduce control, major TV networks don’t want to reduce control, and the Net Neutrality movement is all about controlling what you can do and what you watch. As brilliant as man is, we are very short-sighted when it comes to money and people.
The message of an Open & Free Business Model where I believe everyone wins, needs to be embraced. There is a need for more people like Gerd Leonhard, Glen Hiemstra and the extreme futurists like Ray Kurzweil to help you embrace the future of an ever changing world. To help you see something bigger than yourself, something bigger than your business, it’s happening all around you whether you like it or not. There is a tidal wave of people coming, and most business owners (small to medium sized business mostly) are looking the other way.
The world is more connected than it has ever been before, a connected and networked audience is dramatically different from what you’re used to. You cannot control a connected audience. They re-group on the fly, they will go someplace else if it’s too hard to get what they want from you, they will find it elsewhere. The experience this connected world has with you, determines your worth, you’ll either gain there trust or you won’t, but making things as easy as possible to do business with you will take you a long way to gaining that trust. The world is EPIC, Experiential, Participatory, Image Driven and Connected.
Resist the notion that being in control will make money,embrace a more open & free business model and turn your attraction into transactions. Create new ways of doing business, make the paradigm shift to an open business model and build a new safety net,by trusting your customers. If you don’t accept the new world of business online, you will learn very quickly, that your safety net of control is broken.
The old business model of a closed / control is failing us here online, we truly believe that if we are in control, put things behind walls, force people to pay first, we will create new money and all will be well. Not true. The new open & free model is somewhat the opposite of that model, your product & services are out in the open for people to try and use, then they will buy. Recently, media futurist Gerd Leonhard put his products out there for you to freely download and use, and announcing the payment model for his new iPhone & Android mobile apps: pay what you think it’s worth. Would you do this, you will in the future.
I can tell you first hand that most business owners are scared to death of this model, but what they don’t realize is, they will create more new money with this open & free business model than they believe they will. Now I am not saying there isn’t a need for controlled models, I am however saying, here online it can’t be maintained and have it survive. Gerd Leonhard stated in a presentation he made March 2nd, 2009, “Rights-holders / Content-Owners have the choice: Control + Declining Revenues or ‘Open’ and New Revenues “.
This is only one example of someone embracing the new open & free business model, he is trusting his marketplace, his following and current strategic business alignments to provide revenues. Social Currency (trust) is the key here, your brand must be trusted for this open & free business model to succeed. It’s not that simple, you must be open, transparent, and have integrity at all times. This sounds great but is a lot of work, maintaining this kind of model can’t be done with the current closed business model. The current model relies on control, fear and you not pushing back. We are moving to this model, it’s going to happen, why? You won’t tolerate the old control model, you want access first, you want to try before you buy, you will dictate how business is done. Eventually.
If you write a book or make a product and try to position yourself under the old model, you have to jump through all the control mechanism hoops. In the open & free business model you just make it available, you may not make money from the book immediately in terms of sales. You will however realize revenues by monetizing around the book, consulting, coaching, teaching and or maybe even get hired because of your insights and know how. Your book must be good of course, you must bring quality in order to get the attention you need to realize the levels of revenue you desire. Attention is another form of currency.
Chris Brogan is all about making business human again, he also knows you will help him drive that process. You may not know it, but you want business to be human, not a system making you a number. You want to feel human, be viewed as human, and most of all, you want to feel important. Chris knows we are all after the same thing really, he is helping you see it, we want to make a difference, and make the world a better place, we all want to feel important. The problem has never been the desire, it was the how do we do it. Social Media has opened the door for you to exercise what you didn’t know how to do, you now have a way to express yourself and make it happen. You will and are shaping the future of business, the open & free model even if you can’t see the bigger picture right now.
Eventually you will make it happen, Control Is Dead!
This has been on mind for some time now, why corporations don’t get social media. I may be way off base here but there are primarily two or three reasons why they don’t or can’t wrap their brians around what’s happening in the new way marketing.
1.) They haven’t tried, touched, or even asked what the meaning of Social Media is or is not.
2.) Don’t have a clear understanding of Outbound & Inbound Marketing concepts.
3.) Only know how to Broadcast – push, sell products & services.
4.) View a relationship as a sale only.
I’m sure this list could be longer but it’s clear to me that unless there is a simple way of helping the highly educated (constipated) executives, this isn’t going to change anytime soon. Why do a very small few get it and the majority don’t? Fear of Change, Fear of Loss, Fear of not seeing the big picture due to a poor understanding of what they are being asked to participate in.
I know a particular business owner who has been picking my brain, wants to understand the details first, make sure he experiences somekind of ROI before commiting to this new marketing environment. This would lead me to item #5 – CONTROL – there is a fear of losing control like never before, look at the music industry, a prime example of the fear of losing money. Eventually, music will be free, or at least some kind of Collective License that allows for a mutual interest rather than a monopoly.
It’s not all the business owners & executives fault. The fault lies with those who consider themselves experts in this Social Media environment, provide poor information and relate the message that only confuses them more.
This has been written about before, I’m not saying anything new here. The truth is it will never change, just as there are criminals, Internet Marketers and Social Media Experts…there will always be people looking to find a short cut to success. Most people don’t want to wait, have patience and or do the work, they just want to cash grab and do as little as possible. Knowing that, I’m not shocked or surprised at how business owners respond when the topic of Social Media comes up.
So what’s the answer? Do your homework, get a good understanding of what your prospect or client is asking, learn what Social Media is, learn Social Media’s place in the marketing mix, and above all….if you don’t know, shut your mouth or say I don’t know but I’ll find out. Don’t spew crap so you don’t look bad, tell the truth and go on the journey with your prospective client, better yet, invite someone who does understand to the meeting. This problem #6 – poor representation which means the wrong information is being shared.
I’ve ranted enough on the topic, there’s a Social Media Mess out there and it’s up to us to clean it up. If Social Media is putting the power back into the hands of we the people, then let’s make sure we are using that power correctly and for good.
Why Corporation’s Don’t Get Social Media? You tell me, I’m just one voice, one person listening to business owners in my area, what are you coming up against and how are you being part of the solution?