Never before has the been a time in business where a threat so strong has immobilized business owners and their management teams. Ignorance has never been a place to hide behind, not paying attention doesn’t work either. The reason nothing is happening, CEO’s are protecting their bonuses, middle managers are fighting to keep what they believe is entitled to them. This movement, this new second industrial age has been known and talked about for many years, here, and in the board rooms. But very little movement to accept or adopt keeps fear as the motivator to do nothing, to do what has always been done.
Some 25 years ago, the Internet was born, it opened the door to a brave new world, a world that brought even more confusion on top of what we already have, the pile got bigger. The pile (fear) is bigger, it’s enormous, because we chose to be spectators, we were convinced we didn’t know what to do, so we did nothing. I’m speaking to the masses in big business, those who adopted, who chose to act on what they could see, they are down the road, enjoying the fruits of their labors.
The Internet, for all intents and purposes, has removed the need for the middleman, the Internet put customer and product together without the need to be sold by that so-called person in the middle. Our BS protectors work better than ever in this new industrial age, this new or second industrial age. If we are going to act like the Industrial age of the last 150 years, we might as well name this new revolution the 2nd Industrial Age, it might ease the pain of big business. But make no mistake, the middleman is in the cross hairs, there is very little need for them, unless they can reinvent themselves to take part in a new role.
If you’re that person, the middle man / woman, find a way to get of the way, stay out of the cross hairs. If you choose to do nothing, your world will come crashing down around you. It doesn’t have to, because you have the same opportunity to go build something great, you have the tools, the brain power, and you need very few resources, what are you waiting for, now go!
Considering all that is changing, how business is changing, how global and yet how locally our businesses must be, does your business line up with that future? Is your business social, or is it traditional? Does your business advertise on the Internet as part of its marketing mix, or do you stick with traditional modes of advertising. There are many questions to ponder when starting a new venture, but the main questions is, what kind of business, what structure, what type, and will it meet the needs of the economy.
The new economy is a connection economy, how does your business connect consumers, how do you connect to other businesses. Just using social networks is not connecting, depending on how you use them, most use them as another channel to yell, flood, to do what you’ve always done. You use them with a traditional mindset, it’s not connecting, it’s telling.
The traditional way, meant you had to have ads in the yellow pages, maybe you ran radio commercials, and you mostly used Newspaper. You never had to consider the Internet as part of your mix, and most still don’t have a clear understanding of how it works, and how to you use it for business. Today you have to think about where to best spend your time & money, adding the Internet as another way of enticing consumers to your business, to buy. But consumers act differently online, or do they?
More than ever , there is much to consider, it’s not black & white as it was back 30 years ago. The Internet is 25 years old, and brings with it challenges, and incredible opportunity. Asking yourself if you’re on LinkedIn, FaceBook, Twitter, YouTube, Google Plus is the new normal today, knowing what to do on them, and how to leverage them, is not normal, not like Radio, TV, and Newspaper. But you’re already figuring that out aren’t you.
Business is getting much more complicated, it’s causing you to rethink what kind of business. Traditional or The Connected. And what does a connected business model look like, it’s the Open & Free Business Model. And that you can learn here on owengreaves.com.
Here we are yet once again, Christmas time. Why is it that we are all shocked by the fact it’s upon us and we just aren’t ready for it? If you’re one of those people, and you are a business owner, I ask you, how do you stay in business? I’m mean really, you are the one who is supposed to have the house in order, making sure all is on schedule, and then you say you’re not ready for Christmas?
Ya I know I’m ranting a bit, it sounds silly doesn’t it, but yet many of us do just that, some credibility is lost when you admit you aren’t ready for Christmas. It’s the same date every year, it happens only once per year, you know what it means, and you know what you are supposed to do, so what’s the problem.
Now I’m generalizing here but, we tend to spend our time & money on what we believe is important to us, not being ready for Christmas speaks volumes about how you value the world, how you value the people around you, and especially your immediate family.
Those in Social Media circles claim they love their followers and so on, we are all very nice to each other here, we lift one another up, we help for free alot, and we say things we don’t really believe. That’s the truth really, but we want to move forward and move ahead, and in the Future of Business you won’t be able to do that without people helping one another. We are moving into a Merry Christmas Economy!
In a Merry Christmas Economy we help one another, we don’t expect anything back, we just want to be a part of something larger than ourselves. We will share openly, we will click on Like buttons and Re-Tweet icons to show how much we value others and their businesses. We value relationships, we value the world differently, and we all have the same basic needs (in general), this new economy is open to anyone, it’s to good to be true, it’s awesome! You will need to make your brand / product or service like-able if it isn’t already, that’s how your business will be judged.
Gary Vaynerchuk has written about the Thank You Economy, is he talking about the same thing, he wants you to care, to care about those around you, and mean it. He not only wants you to say it, he wants you to actually do something about it. But will you, why all of a sudden now, why in this Social Media ERA is that so important?
It’s gut check time now, look deep into who you are, why you’re in business, why you in Social Networks, are you practicing, are you participating in business for others or yourself? If you are honest, others are secondary, but they shouldn’t be, they pay your bills, they provide the roof over your head. They will determine if your business is liked! But yet, we make it difficult for customers to deal with us, we make them jump through hoops to get our help, we make them work to hard to do business with us, why is that?
The Future of Business will be very different, being social is the osmosis of being connected, being connected means the world will decide what is good and what is bad, not slick marketing. This connectedness means we are on the move at all times, we are mobile in such a way your business will have trouble tracking and understanding the consumer, unless your values match with there’s.
The Merry Christmas Economy has an underlying problem, it has to solve the problem of an entitlement mentality. In The Future of Business, we must provide access over pay-walls, and find seamless ways of qualifying the consumer. When we get past the entitlement thinking, we will get to the heart of the matter, where people matter, make doing business with our brand, product or service virtually painless, only then will we have insight into the future of business. Dealing with your business has to be like breathing, no thinking, no obstructions, no walls, wide open hospitality, an experience they won’t forget, something they do through osmosis. Just like in the movie A Field Of Dreams, they will come and they won’t even know why. Is that your kind of business, one that participates in the Field of dreams, if you build it, they will come. It could be like that, but it will boil down to how you value others in a Merry Christmas Economy?
You will read much about this a great deal here, and you will hear about it in many other circles, the world has yet to arrive, but when they do, an Open Economy will emerge and swarm the Internet like never before. An open economy will bring about a new way of thinking, a new way of planning, and a new way of generating revenue. Much will change and then some things will remain the same, out of fear and creativity.
One thing that will change, regardless of you or your businesses participation, customers will take charge in this open business model, they’ve already started if you haven’t noticed. In fact, you probably are seeing a shift to where the middle-man is dead, small is the new big, it’s happening because we used to succeed by controlling, and businesses are no longer in control in this open economy. Good companies will have to find things users can do in order to keep them, open things, give users more control.
Jeff Jarvis, author of , What Would Google Do? he used an example of the auto industry, wouldn’t it be interesting if one of the big auto companies would let you order a car unpainted. Then you would talk to your friend who can paint it and knows you, you could ask him to paint the car you. It could be anything that screams who you are, imagine a world where cars are painted by a persons personality. Or if you could order a car with Skype in it (my idea). Would you allow that to happen in your business? Being open is a huge shift in thinking, a paradigm shift, one filled with fear and uncertainty. One where you have to relinquish control to the user (customer), show them more than you ever thought of doing before.
In the new model, attention will be the new currency, getting attention will be central to your success. In fact, if you want to be found, you will have to be in “the public”, in the open, the model will demand it. You will place value on different indicators, you will learn the value of being involved in the conversation, with your customers, do what they are asking you to do, will you listen to them?
Here are a number shifts that are going take place, some have already begun. Taken from Gerd Leonhard’s Slide presentation:
1.) A Web-Native Business Model – the Internet (Web) will be the primary way of doing business. It’s no longer just an add-on.
2.) Shift from the Network to Networked
3.) Mobile & Social 1st
4.) Open Platforms (Google)
5.) From Control to Trust
6.) From Egosystem to Ecosystem (Collaboration will be everything for survival)
7.) From walled gardens to the Jungle (You can’t keep things behind walls and generate new money)
8.) Everything will shift to the Cloud
9.) Friction to Engagement
10.) GUI (Graphical User Interface) to NUI (Natural User Interface)
11.) Linear to Fuzzy Logic
12.) New Qualifications
13.) A Shift from Denial to Foresights
14.) Yes / No to Maybe
The world is coming, and it bringing a new way of doing business, it’s called an Open Economy, an Open & Free Business Model, will you learn it, will you embrace it?
The Internets future is of great interest to me, I study some of the worlds smartest technology people because they see things differently than the rest of us. The Futurists are an interesting lot, they even cause me to chuckle now and then, but we need them because it forces us to look outside the box. I share and talk about the possibilities technology can bring, I care very much how it impacts society and our economy’s, plus I love looking into the future.
So I ask you Bloggers & Marketer’s, have you stopped to consider what and how the new economy is going to work, what it might look like, and how it will impact how you Blog and Market? Do you know what the New Economy is? There is and will be a New Economy, it will be The Data Economy, the New Content Economy. We will connect data to data, line to line, not web-page to web-page, this economy will set the table for a revolutionary way of doing business on the Internet. Google is ensuring this will happen, everything will be mobile and on the cloud.
We are entering a time where Command & Control will become Coordinate & Cultivate, where domination is out – and Collaboration is in. Where the current economic egoism no longer works, because now we are all connected, it breeds mediocrity. Mediocrity is what we have / had under the control model. We need to build an Ecosystem, where we freely, openly share & collaborate, with the right blend of sharing rather than piracy. Collaboration is and will be required to build in this new economy.
An entirely new way of thinking comes from being connected, Trust is the Key, Trust is the new currency. This trust will be developed over time, it will make or break organizations and indivduals with large followings and high levels of influence, but this trust won’t come easy. Advertising in the connected world has to be radically different, otherwise it will keep declining. We can no longer market on the Internet by yelling. Marketing needs to hit the RESET button and figure out how to function in the new economy.
Content today is copied, you download a PDF, an MP3 and what have you, it’s a copy. The Internet is a giant copy machine, if you disconnect the copy function, you disconnect the listening function. The fight to keep control of copies is a losing battle on this network, but how do we get the money from a network that can copy everything for free? We need to sell things that can’t be copied, the conversation is the sell. We need to sell things around the content, the packaging, the experience. Money is moving from the selling of copies, to selling the experience. After all, your Brand will be judged by that experience, if it’s bad, you will be out of business sooner than later. You can see the landscape is changing, the end of control is taking shape everywhere.
Social Media is a very human driven practice, it can’t be done with a single person, it just doesn’t scale well that way. Gary Vaynerchuk has shown us how hard it is to keep up and stay on top of all that is data, he won’t be able to sustain the demand on his time and become ineffective.
It’s important to state that Social Media is not about technology, it’s about a culture change, a paradigm shift, we have to get better at believing in the impossible.
We need to think about how we Blog & Market, re-write the books on how it’s done, because what we are doing is a diminishing return. What kind of experience do people have when they come to your Blog, and what kind of emotions are engaged when they see and hear your marketing messages? The power is now in the hands of the people formerly known as consumers, how will you engage them?
You’ve heard this message before a million times, you probably preached it over and over, but the real question is, are you one of the change agents helping shape this new economy? Have you studied what’s to come, do you know and see the indicators? The New Economy views content first as a service, then an experience – and only then (maybe) a product.
I know my voice gets lost in the noise, that’s OK. I know the Internet is a big place, and a very large network that dissects, crosses over and loops back, and some how we are supposed to find what we are looking for. Companies like Google are trying to filter the content and help us all get exactly what we want. But that my friends, is whole nother story. Filtering and curation are the keys to the next phase, and eventually we’ll find ourselves dealing with smart noise.
Are you paying attention, what do you see?