You know the business world is being turned on its head, even the old terms have a new meaning. This is not new, I’ve talked about this before, but today it’s become more real and in your face. Today it’s called pay for performance, the old name was called, “commission”. You got paid a commission for your performance, of what you sold. Today you get paid for something you do, not what you sold.
Businesses rely on transactions, the old way meant something was sold, a product or service was exchanged for money. Today, money is changing, it’s not hard cash that get’s exchanged, it can be as simple as a barter. It can be a new form of payment, pay with a Tweet, pay with finishing a mission on Empire Avenue, it’s no longer cash as we know it. What we used to call it a favor, is now a new kind of transaction. Today, merely referring someone reaps a reward. Your business now has to find ways to embrace these new transactions….and they aren’t that new, we’ve been doing them most of our lives, they now have a new reward. And I haven’t mentioned Bitcoin yet : )
How do you define pay for performance today, the old way, or the new social way? What do you believe to be the new social currency?
The Internet is filled with places to get free information, free software, free content, it’s all there for the taking. We can click and get whatever we want right? The Internet is a giant copy machine, we copy everything, imagine what would happen if you took the copy function away, you would lose the the listening function. What would happen then, revolt, maybe the hackers would be the politicians? Pirates would rule the Internet world, how would you stop them or should I say us?
Personally, I think most content should and will end up being free on the Internet, we will figure out how to monetize around that free content, we have no choice, it’s going to happen. There will be wars over intellectual rights, copyrights and royalty fights before it’s all said and done. Access will come before ownership. When we see a threat, we default to protectionism, we should be asking the question, how do we go from copyright to usage rights?
There is so much confusion as to where Social Media is taking us, it’s really reshaping Media to where the new sell is the conversation, the non tangible things matter now more than ever, this is a drastic disruption to old thinking. Why is Social Media so powerful, it’s FREE! You can join any number of Social Networks at no cost, build a following, a brand, and hopefully trust. The best thing is to sell something different like, convenience, experience and trust, generate demand, create new innovation and maybe even add value to the orginal.
Most Blogs provide free content, some have communities attached to them where you pay a small fee to be part of, they add value to a need, that’s one way of monetizing around your content. If you are going to be in this space, you have to decide if you’re going to compete.
Linus Torvalds released Linux back in 1991, Slackware was the first distro to be released, it’s a free operating system that has spawned a number companies that have figured out how to monetize something around the Open Source code. Open is good, it stirs the creative juices, it brings about innovation, and takes creativity far beyond any closed system has ever dreamed of going.
The power of free is far reaching, provides a platform to build something far greater than any one person, we must collaborate to build anything of true value in this attention space. Do you think FaceBook won’t make money from the free to join social network? Where you can be connected to thousands of people, business contacts, business owners at no charge. They will, and it will be astounding how much that will be.
Think of all the things you can get it for free, then think of all the content you can’t get for free, what’s important to you in this circle, that’s what you will pay for. But I can promise you this, if you can get for free, you will, even if it means you have to hunt for it. If you create content of any kind, offer it for free, you will harness the power of your audience. You can’t put content behind walls and generate new money, only in the open can you generate new money, and only then you will see the power of free.
This section may answer some question but will also bring out more, consider it an opportunity to think tank with your team. The S.W.O.T (Strengths, Weaknesses, Opportunities, Threats) gives a quick reference to things that may or may not be real, but are possibilities. The accumulation of all these steps builds a road map, an understanding, and makes it possible to explain or describe where you are going in a short concise way, and makes it obvious what you are planning to do in the coming month’s and or years.
Keep in mind there is no wrong or right answer here, you are merely compiling and observing your organizations current status. This is just one step on the journey, one step in building a business case, and one more step in assessing what services and changes are needed to support your organizations business requirements. The basics rarely change, only the technology does, and of course there is always a list of nice to haves, documenting everything helps you filter what’s important and what is not.
Again, this list will be different…it should be as technology and business needs change. Here is an example:
1. Minimal Core Infrastructure (name your application here)
2. New, enthusiastic team
1. 85% of staff are new to the organization
2. Unable to meet the expectations (Can’t move fast enough to please everyone)
3. Network instability
4. Lack of integration of core applications
1. Social Media Networks
2. Open Source
1. Inability to compete for qualified skilled people
2. Security – hacking, spam etc.
3. Inadequate budget
4. Little control over vendor products or direction
5. Little control over technologies
This is just an example of what your S.W.O.T. might look like, pull your team together and ask all the tough questions, make an exhaustive list and then pick the top 5 from each of the 4 areas in your SWOT.
This is the prime definition taken from the Wikipedia site on SWOT Analysis:
SWOT Analysis is a strategic planning method used to evaluate the Strengths, Weaknesses, Opportunities, and Threats involved in a project or in a business venture. It involves specifying the objective of the business venture or project and identifying the internal and external factors that are favorable and unfavorable to achieving that objective. The technique is credited to Albert Humphrey, who led a convention at Stanford University in the 1960s and 1970s using data from Fortune 500 companies.
Until next time