100 years ago, the personality and the perceived character of salespeople were key determinants of success as these traits would command both liking and respect.1 However, in Arthur Miller’s 1949 play Death of a Salesman, Willy Loman complained that the sales profession was becoming “all cut and dried” and that you no longer could sell with “personality” or the personal relationships you have with your customers.
This week, Facebook made it clear that it wants to become the hub for even more of our online experiences through enhanced levels of integration with other services and serendipitous sharing of our real-time actions using the “open graph”. No doubt we will all drown in a sea of information overload if we try to keep up with everything that our friends are up to as Facebook literally is pointing a firehose full of detailed information about our online lives to anyone thirsty for information. Even obsessive Facebook lurkers and stalkers are going to find it difficult to keep up and may be gasping for some fresh air. The implication is that if all of us are going to share exponentially more bits and pieces of ourselves, we must find new approaches to deal with the information flow. Here comes some such ways:
After Wednesday’s Back-to-School Night at our kids’ Elementary school, I made it slightly late to a very educational and entertaining Linked Orange County event with Social media superstar Mari Smith at the Hilton Hotel in Costa Mesa. In what should have been a stop on a book tour (new release date October 25), Mari eloquently laid out the key elements of her upcoming book “The New Relationship Marketing: How to Build a Large, Loyal, Profitable Network Using the Social Web” (not an affiliate link).
In recent years, social media has played a key role in bringing about dramatic changes in business, consumer cultures, and even whole societies. Businesses are becoming more transparent and are also held accountable for their actions as citizens are empowered with more real-time and unbiased information. Consumers are (perhaps reluctantly) accepting a reduced amount of privacy as a price they are willing to pay as they feel the urge to share their day-to-day lives with a wider set of “friends”. Societies undergo revolutionary transformations as social media serves as the communication platform needed for collective action to be mobilized against oppressive regimes such as in the case of the 2011 revolutions in Tunisia and Egypt.
This has been a very intensive week with the “Business in Scandinavia Bootcamp” in preparation for the travel part our Chapman University MBA travel course starting early June. During 15 class hours here on the Chapman University campus, Clas Wihlborg and I briefed the group of 18 MBA students on topics such as:
I thoroughly enjoyed an inspired talk by Gary Vaynerchuk (@garyvee) last night on his new book The Thank You Economy. I also treasured the opportunity for a brief chat with him about social media marketing and social commerce. Some of the points that Gary made last night:
Bryan Elliott (@BryanElliott) visiting my Chapman University MBA class in Internet & Social Media Marketing and sharing his take on social media marketing today as well as his intriguing story about first building a community in the Action Sports Industry and then broadening his reach with LinkedOC.com through which he has been able to accomplish such impressive feats such as hosting marketing godfather Seth Godin here in Orange County.
On March 2nd, 2011, marketing superstar and best-selling author Seth Godin honored his Orange County fans with a return visit to a Linked OC event and the venue this time was brand new and beautiful Renée and Henry Segerstrom Concert Hall; inspiring to see what landmarks Swedish immigrants can leave behind! It was also gratifying to see that many of my students were able to make it for this terrific event. A special thanks to the host of the evening, Bryan Elliott, who made this happen and for recognizing our Chapman University volunteers from the stage. Many thanks also to the many students of mine who volunteered at the event! Finally, thanks to Seth Godin for an excellent talk on his latest book, “Poke the Box” and for encouraging us all to take more initiatives! For some more of my pictures from the event, please click here and for many professional pictures from the event, please check out Pixel That Photography!
On February 10, I delivered the keynote address titled “Social Media Marketing-A Primer for Executives” for the BRACE (Business Retention Attraction Creation & Expansion) Program at the City of Cypress. It was a great opportunity to interact with executives from over 30 large Cypress businesses who attended the event. Thanks to Economic Development Manager Bill Manis for setting up the event and thanks to Mayor Pro Tem Doug Bailey and Mayor Prakash Narain, M.D. for the warm welcome!
David O. Sacks, Founder/CEO at Yammer, Inc., and at Geni, Inc. and former COO of PayPal, generously shared insights on technology startups and social media marketing in the MBA class of Marketing Professor Niklas Myhr at Chapman University. Best IT startups have a viral component to them like all three he has been involved with. Buying eyeballs with ads quickly gets very expensive. Beware feature creep, launch once you have a “minimum viable product” and get the snowball rolling!