Socialnomics. In his groundbreaking book, The Long Tail, Chris Ander- son eloquently describes the ability of the Internet within free markets to. Socialnomics, Erik Qualman shows how easy it is for individuals to . Information about this book and other business titles: SOCIALNOMICS. HOW SOCIAL MEDIA. TRANSFORMS THE WAY WE LIVE About This Book xv. Introduction: It's a People-Driven Economy, Stupid xvii.

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A strength of this book is Erik Qualman's ability to take complex issues and break them . Socialnomics is the value created and shared via social media and its. Socialnomics: How social media transforms the way we live and do business Exam questions on this book are likely to be based on the questions below. As a whole, the public wants to stay Socialnomics, Erik Qualman shows how as notes that Information about this book and other business titles: may mention.

It not only allows them to viewers with messages in hopes that the advertise- silently observe the lives of others, but to participate ment will convince viewers to vote for them. These generations are utilizing social where he could interact with voters on a daily basis media to its full potential, and even prefer to convey and communicate his views through actual two-way messages via their social networking profiles rather conversations. This was done in a large part because than through email, which they find too formal.

When his campaign had very little money when it started dating, they ask others if they have a social network- out, and social media was an inexpensive way to reach ing profile rather than a phone number, because social voters. The Obama camp soon learned, however, that media allows them to get a sense of who that person not only was it more affordable, but it was actually is before they decide to contact them; they are able to much more effective than traditional advertising.

Obama had 5. What once took place only periodically around fans on his facebook pages, while McCain had less than one million. In the an application that allows users to start and join upcoming elections, this data will likely be used to causes they care about in order to spread information help determine who will take office.

Often tomers through the wrath of social networks. It is estimated that consumers to brag about their accomplishments or online voting could save the U. For example, a travel company 6. Like light all of the countries and cities they have been to. Obama, organizations and gov- ernments need to keep up with The U. President, for the first time, can cultivate grassroots the possibilities that lay within social media. There is a goldmine communities directly where people discover, create, and share of information available to those information online.

Obama has pledged to involve Americans who are willing to sort through in his decision making, by giving them five days to comment it, and it is incredibly easy to get online on any nonemergency legislation before he signs it. Most e-books are people online, campaigners and organizations will able to connect to the Internet, and because of this, it find that they are able to gain offline support as well, will soon be possible for words within e-book texts to whether that is through an increase in campaign link to products or services related to that word.

For donations or an increase in sales. Because of dis- cess cheaply, quickly, and with a quality product. The appointing experiences with traditional advertising, cost of paying a web designer to create an applica- many individuals no longer trust what brands have tion is much less than the cost of shooting a television to say about themselves and prefer to ask their friends commercial and paying entertainment networks for about their experiences with a specific type of prod- advertising time slots.

The popularity of an applica- uct or service. In fact, 76 percent of consumers rely on tion can spread with incredible speed due to the ease what others say regarding their downloading decisions, with which individuals can share information with while only 15 percent say they rely on traditional friends by posting links on their own profiles or on advertising.

Only two types of companies will be those of their friends. Social networks are becoming included in online conversations: those that are very so popular that they are beginning to threaten Google good at what they claim to do and those that are very in regards to their utility as a search engine. Rather bad at what they claim to do. When a company designates themselves many people are choosing to search through their as the expert on a specific subject, individuals will social networks for product information before decid- automatically remember to go to that brand when ing to make a download.

Google displays the most they have that specific need or issue. Organizations should work to craft one simple and salient message that they will As people increasingly look to their social networks for advice convey throughout all of their and recommendations, marketers need to make certain they marketing tactics, both through traditional advertisements and via are part of the consideration set.

The End of Social Schizophrenia If a company cannot state what they stand for and In the past, most people maintained separate work how they are unique from the competition in a few and home lives and rarely mixed the two; they acted as short sentences, then they should reevaluate exactly one person at work, and another, very different person what it is that their company is doing. Once the cor- in their personal lives. When prepar- social networks, however, counteracts social schizo- ing to market a product or service on social networks, phrenic behaviors.

It is almost impossible to get every- networks. While there are downsides to having such thing right the first time. With the large amount of authenticity on social net- works, something less than flattering will eventually Corporations should also make sure to play to their be said about any company. The way an organization strengths. Advertising a wide variety of abilities is not reacts to these postings will determine whether or not as effective as advertising the one ability that they do they are a winner or a loser in the social media uni- extremely well.

Making themselves known in a spe- verse. For example, Charles Schwab spon- nization should ask the individual to take the game sored the very popular sports podcast Fantasy Football down, even though they violated copyright or trade- Today, and instead of simply mentioning Charles mark laws.

Doing so would only make the company Schwab and moving on to other talking points, they look staunch, old-fashioned, selfish, and out of touch. The more enjoyable the ad is for the con- the sorts of social media tools they will be using sumer to watch, listen to, or participate in, the more i.

Corporations should take are aiming for. This will cost face in order to deal with them effectively when the organization no money at all, and it will engage they arise. For example, a company that makes Companies should also be careful not to cross the line wedding cakes should not call themselves by their between copyright and customer loyalty. Traditional recruiting their profile name. Larger, more established compa- avenues such as job fairs and head-hunting firms nies may prefer to go with their brand name, but for will continue to exist in the near future, but not for smaller, niche companies it is a better idea to use key- much longer.

Today, companies are beginning to words instead of fringe company names in order to focus the vast amount of their job recruiting ventures bring more potential customers to their profile. More Some companies may feel inspired by social media information can be learned about both the applicants and decide that they should start their own social net- and the organization simply from reading over their work just for their organization.

Doing so, however, is respective profiles. This information was often diffi- a bad idea.

Socialnomics: How Social Media Transforms the Way We Live and Do Business

This does not allow employees to integrate cult or impossible to obtain in previous years, and the their work into their personal life, which broadens the increase in personal data makes it easier for compa- reach of the organization, and even loyal fans of the nies and applicants to determine whether or not they brand are not likely to start up another profile on an are right for each other.

Because of this phenomenon, entirely different social networking site that relates the number of appropriate matches between busi- only to one specific brand. Instead, corporations nesses and employees has increased significantly should focus on being where their customers are and within recent years. Job seeking will become more referral based in the same way that businesses are becoming more referral The people and corporations of today live in glass based.

Search engines rightfully look for and aggregate these tags as well as the names of the links to help in ranking items. Jane the Blogger receives tons of direct traffic from the various direct links to her story. She has thousands of eyes looking at her story that a marketer would be happy to pay decent money for. The average person on Facebook has friends—there is a lot of viral potential when one person posts a story or video.

Barriers to entry, like required subscriptions, can cause an unfavorable ripple to cascade into an inevitable crescendo of failure. Tribune is the second largest newspaper conglomerate and has such well-known properties as the Los Angeles Times and the Chicago Tribune. We see this type of flawed thinking time after time, and it keeps repeating itself because companies are having a difficult time understanding how to leverage the social graph.

Rather than attempt to understand, many forge ahead and try unsuccessfully to impose outdated business models on the social graph.

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The end result of this type of approach is not pretty. In the Associated Press asked Google not to feature its content in the search results.

Other companies and publishers pay search experts to help get high in the rankings want because they more traffic. Yet, the AP did the exact opposite.

More progressive thinking is what the New York Times has done. They have a monthly subscription-based model that automatically downloads to eBook readers like the site Kindle, Sony eReader, Apple iPod, and so on. It is too soon to tell if this type of model will work, but it has a better chance than the models that are attempting to cram a square peg into a round hole. There is no need to re-create the wheel if you can just as easily learn from the mistakes and successes of the past.

History repeats itself because nobody listens the first time. When he unexpectedly passed away in , his Wikipedia page was updated before Fox News announced it. The online newspaper-subscription model works well if you are the only one holding the information. However, it breaks down if free and faster information is available. Ironically, major media outlets are designed to cover the big news stories, not the minor niche ones.

This makes sense because these niche stories were historically reserved for the local media outlets. Our major media outlets are now competing against Wikipedia and other social collaborative sites, and those sites are stronger.

As far back as December , studies were conducted showing the accuracy and viability of Wikipedia. The experts then compared the competing articles side by side —one from each site on a given topic—but were not told which article came from which site.

Nature collected 42 usable reviews from its field of experts. In the end, the journal found just eight serious errors, such as general misunderstandings of vital concepts, in the articles. Of those, four came from each site.

One could debate and many have the validity of this study, but one thing that is very telling is that Britannica itself launched its own version of a Wiki they need to have final approval in Today Wikipedia has become even more accurate, not less, due to the increased size and diversity of its contributing user base and increase in editors.

Wikipedia is bound to be more accurate for major topics—if you have 1, experts contributing, versus 3 to 5 experts, the social graph will win every time. However, conversely for niche products, where you have 2 to 3 contributors versus 2 to 3 encyclopedia experts, the experts will provide more reliable information.

Wikipedia is successful as a result of scale and selfpolicing. One prime example of free and faster information is the site zillow. Zillow allows users and realtors to investigate the estimated values of various real estate properties. It aggregates various public data most recent sale price, up-to-date selling prices of the surrounding houses in the neighborhood, asking prices, quality of schools, etc.

To augment this third-party data, Zillow allows its user base to update various aspects. For example, a user can update the number of rooms or bathrooms in a particular home. If you are the homeowner and renovated it by adding a bathroom in the basement, who is a more qualified expert than you the homeowner to update the listing?

Google Maps offers a similar wiki functionality by allowing users to move items on the maps so that they are more accurate, such as updating a store that may have gone out of business in 23 24 Socialnomics the last few weeks. This model works well. Google establishes a baseline product offering map of the area and then allows the public to help fine-tune and grow it. This is a slightly different but just as effective model as Wikipedia.

Wikipedia proves the value of collaboration on a global basis. The output of many minds results in clarity of purpose and innovation. The lesson to be learned is that if collaboration among strangers across the Internet can result in something as useful Wikipedia—think about how collaboration among colleagues can transform business. Many businesses are starting to use Social Media collaboration tools like yammer in the workplace.

They then used data openly available on MySpace to seek out people who had mentioned bacon in their profiles—they found over 35, such people.

It was amazing and scary at the same time. The spice that made everything taste like bacon incredibly sold , bottles in 18 months. Like JetBlue, Zappos, and Comcast before them, they also started following what people were saying about Bacon Salt and responding to them.

For a small business owner, it is still very daunting and cumbersome to figure out how to set up a website for a small business. As evidenced by Lefkow and Esch, you can get a fan page, profile page, group page, and so on up and running on your favorite social network in literally minutes.

The functional solution that social networks can provide is the ability to have an automatic shopping cart and transaction model easily established. The social network could take a. This is similar to what Obama excelled at—small payments that add up to millions of dollars. Essentially, this is almost a micropayment model for small businesses. Small businesses can be up and running in a few hours on a social media storefront, and the fractions of pennies that the social media platform captures from transactions would hardly be missed by that small business, but would be a huge revenue generator for the social media platform when they collect from thousands of businesses.


These efforts often fall short, and companies wind up developing their own similar marketing programs—sometimes to grand success and other times to failure.

One company that was able to leverage an overnight sensation was chewing gum brand Stride Cadbury. Many of these games were primarily shooter games. All of us are known for something quirky among our friends. Harding was known for a particular dance. So, while traveling in Vietnam, his travel buddy suggested he do his dance, and they filmed it.

The video was uploaded to his website for friends and family to enjoy, and they loved it! Harding decided to perform his unique dance whenever he was visiting an exotic location on his journey. He later wound up editing together 15 dance scenes in exotic locations. The beauty of the video was that there were no language barriers, it was simply Matt dancing in various locations.

Then, once YouTube exploded on the scene, it was a natural fit for Matt to upload it there. Stride Gum saw a huge opportunity and approached Matt, offering to help sponsor his travels.

Matt was delighted because he had been traveling on a shoestring budget, actually having to use a college travel company STA. With the help of Stride, Matt was able to produce a third video in June, This video was the result of traveling to 42 different countries over the prior 14 months and included shots from 70 different cities and locations. It really makes you feel good about us one day eventually all being connected globally. The best part is the video is still being viewed by the millions, which is completely different from a one and done television commercial.

In fact Stride helped Matt improve on his original formula by suggesting that Matt try to surround himself with locals also joining in the dance, whereas previously the somewhat reserved computer programmer would have, at most, one or two people in the video with him. This resulted in some genius results—one of the most inspiring being Matt surrounded in Poria, Papua New Guinea by a tribe Huli Wigmen dressed in their indigenous garb.

The beauty of this sponsorship is that Matt and his girlfriend Melissa continued to do all of the legwork. He received over 25, responses, and he needed to get release forms signed prior to the filming. This is quite a bit of legwork that could easily get bogged down in the legal department of a large corporation. In this instance, Matt and his girlfriend were continuing to produce the videos from point A to point Z.

Stride could have had Matt wearing a Stride T-shirt and passing out gum, but they were smart enough to leave well enough alone. Instead, they had a tactful message at the end of the video i. Stride showed how successful a brand can be by simply associating itself with social media that is already virally successful, which gives other brands something to chew on.

In April of , over the course of four days, American Airlines had to cancel 3, flights as a result 29 30 Socialnomics of a large percentage of their jets not meeting the maintenance requirements mandated by the Federal Aviation Administration. This was not the result of bad weather or security threats; it was pure negligence on the part of American Airlines. A spokesman for American Airlines expressed their strategy in handling the situation: We fly over million passengers a year, and they are all important to us.

A large percentage of them fly with us exclusively, so the most important goal was to stay in contact and let them know what was going on. And we used every communications channel we have available to us. This included some new plays, including monitoring blogs, as soon as the crisis started.

That was an important part of our strategy. Some of the remarks were tough to take and on some blogs people were actually defending us.

This is similar to trying to time the stock market; very difficult. Website complaints to www. This caused a 13 percent increase in e-mail complaints. What jumped out was a 74 percent increase in downstream traffic to social network MySpace. Also, as noted in the previous quote, there was no mention of specifically monitoring social media outlets—only blogs. They chose to ignore these important conversations. Later in this book, we will show how JetBlue has correctly taken the appropriate measures to make sure they are listening and responding within social media to disgruntled consumers.

Will American Airlines listen?

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Despite niche fragmentation caused by the Internet, people still desire an understanding of what the majority is doing. Spending time on social media makes you more productive.

Business models need to shift. Traditional magazines and newspapers are struggling for online survival because some of the most qualified people to write a story are freelance bloggers who write for the sheer joy of it!

In the future, we will no longer look for the news; rather, the news will find us or we will create it. That future is now.

A key aspect of social media is the ability for millions to tag items just like you would label a manila folder. This helps catalog the information on the Web and makes it easier for all users.

Not all great viral marketing ideas need to originate in the marketing department. It is prudent to team up with already successful grassroots programs e. While millions of people have discovered the benefits of social media, some people and companies have also experienced the potential pitfalls of such mass transparency. More than a few students have been kicked out of universities for collaborating on Twitter, hi5, Facebook, MySpace, and the like for assigned individual school projects.

Or, how about the teachers who have been asked to step down for overtly sexual content within their social 33 34 Socialnomics networks. So what does this all mean? Are social networks powerful enough to cause an adjustment in personal and corporate behavior on a macro-level?

You bet your camera phone they are. Sure, many still have the desire to put their deepest and darkest thoughts and behaviors into a black box, but they are less likely to be able to keep their actions secret. Or, the fact that the substitute teacher went an entire class period not knowing she had toilet paper on her shoe would provide much needed levity to a parent returning from a stressful or monotonous day at the office. At best, parents and teenagers share time around the dinner table, and then everyone goes about his or her own life.

While ignorance can sometimes be bliss, social media provides insight for parents into the day-to-day activities of their children. But you shake your head and say there is no way that kids would allow their parents to spy like that.

Obviously, if their parents are in the social network, then teenagers will be taking on preventative behaviors. Keep in mind that teenagers will also take on preventative behaviors not only for their parents, but also for some of their classmates.

For example, if a rowdy, partying guy was trying to impress a particularly prudish and reserved girl—his behavior in the social network might be a little more refined after she becomes a part of his network and is privy to his activities and behavior.

Good 35 36 Socialnomics companies do this, but savvy companies take it one step further and act on it. Comcast, who has notoriously terrible customer service, did a progressive and great thing from the beginning when it came to microblogging. Comcast saw that and tweeted me back minutes later. This morning I got a call from their service center. This afternoon someone came out. Now my HDTV rocks! THAT my friends is customer service and how it should work all the time.

For example, this is a typical response from JetBlue: Sorry if we weirded you out by following you on Twitter. Because corporate involvement in social media is a new and evolving discipline, I also take a specific interest in conversations revolving around our role here.

Again, my apologies. Is this any good? Tim Ash: Yes, I am. The difference with social media is the speed and ease in which this occurs as well as the sphere of influence.

A post on a message board can take a company quite some time to find i. This can also be a labor intensive and costly process for companies to follow. The key problem is that it is often very labor intensive for the user to post a complaint.

To post on a message board, you generally are required to set up an account for that particular message board. Now, it is so easy to disseminate information from anywhere in particular from your mobile device that more and more customers are doing it.

This is critical because it allows frustrated customers to instantly post their exact feeling at the point of frustration. Similarly, the posts are easy for companies like JetBlue and Comcast to see. This gets to another point on how great companies philosophically approach critically posted content on the Web.

Effective companies and people relish critical online feedback. They use this information to make themselves more competitive by improving their products and services in the eyes of 39 40 Socialnomics the consumer. Good companies view it as an opportunity to prove to that customer they are willing to go the extra mile for them. A good everyday analogy of constructive feedback is a friend who lets you know when you have an unsightly poppy seed stuck in your teeth prior to a big blind date.

This friend is much more valuable to you than the politically polite and silent friend. It has to do with the sphere of influence of the person posting. This status update is sent to people within his network who all personally know him. By knowing Peter, they can readily identify with the position Peter is coming from. The old rule of thumb was that a person who had a bad experience would tell 6 to 10 people about it.

The average person on Twitter follows people. Ten people will be influenced directly. If those 10 also have followers and only 5 percent pick it up, then another 50 individuals will be influenced indirectly, and so it goes on down the line.

Businesses and people are willing to have open diaries within social media as a way to stay connected because their ultimate desire is to feel a part of something larger than themselves.

With this openness comes responsibility for both businesses and individuals. What happens in Vegas stays on YouTube. Individuals and companies are starting to lead their lives as if their mother or board of directors were watching their every move because they probably are. Social media connects parents to their kids like never before.

Social media enables frustrated customers to instantly post their unbridled frustrations. Negative comments and posts are easier for companies to find with social media. Hence those companies have more time to focus on the solution rather than spending time finding the problem. Effective companies and people relish critical feedback via social media. Customer comments that identify areas for improvement are invaluable.

Poor companies spend time attempting to obfuscate or manipulate negative comments within social media. Good companies spend time addressing and resolving customer complaints.

What once took place only periodically around the watercooler is now happening in real time.Yet, some of the core marketing and business principles of the past few centuries will still apply, while other basic practices are becoming as extinct as the companies that continue to try to force them on the unwilling public. One of the key maxims of this book is that investing time on social media actually makes you more productive. Fittingly enough, this is similar to our social media usage behaviors.

More than a few students have been kicked out of universities for collaborating on Twitter, hi5, Facebook, MySpace, and the like for assigned individual school projects. What mistake did NBC make in its coverage of the Olympics?

Someone could argue that the core offering and search engine results have not advanced much in the past five years. Social network competition means the consumer wins.