The Inimitable @markwschaefer interviews Ted Rubin [video]

Originally posted at

Ted Rubin has been on the forefront of social media marketing innovation but when I asked him what was his exciting him about the future, he had a very surprising answer. I liked the conversation so much that I knew I needed to record it for all my friends on {grow}! It’s a short interview but Ted talks fast so he covers a lot of ground, including:

– Disconnect between agency pitches and business needs
– The glacial rate of social media change at the enterprise level
– The number one reason social media is not being spread to employees
– The need for a small-town mentality on the web

I’m sure you’ll enjoy this discussion. Let me know what you think in the comment section below!


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The Power of Community in Social Media ~via @GenFabulous

by  on July 11, 2013 in Coffee with ChloeGenFabTVSocial Media – VIDEO interview below

Last year at BlogHer I had the chance to meet Ted Rubin, co-author of Return on Relationship, in person, but didn’t take it.

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Does Big Data Kill Big Thinking?

Big Data is a popular term today that references the huge volumes of business and consumer data being collected and stored by organizations, which cannot be effectively data mined due to the limitations of commonly used software tools that capture, manage, or process the data.

While first diagnosed in the science, government, healthcare and military industries, the vast volumes of consumer data being produced through social technologies has landed this reality – and this problem – on the desks of CMOs globally.

Not only is data being produced at lighting speeds, the devices used to produce, broadcast, measure, store and share that data are on the rise, which then fuels further content generation. The cycle is creating a Big Data cyclone that organizations will continue to struggle with.

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Permission Marketing: Why Brands Should Be(a)ware!

Social Marketing is the ultimate in Permission Marketing, and therefore it carries the ultimate marketing danger with it: taking away the permission is totally in the consumers’ control.  Brands be(a)ware!

Permission Marketing puts the power in the consumer’s hands, by requiring that the marketers send promotional messages only to consumers who have given marketers permission to do so, whether explicitly (opt-in email list, for example) or implicitly (internet search).

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Digital Darwinism: Who’s Next?

This is the first part in a short series to introduce The End of Business as Usual

Change is inevitable, but it is rarely easy. Among the greatest difficulties associated with change is the ability to even recognize its need at a time when we can actually do something about it. Sometimes, when we finally realize that change is inevitable, the vision  or energy needed to push forward in a new direction is elusive. Or worse, when competitors recognize the need for change before us, we are by default pushed into a precarious position where our next steps become impulsive rather than strategic.

If you follow technology as avidly as I do, we can agree that the volume of emerging technology is both awe-inspiring and overwhelming. As new technology makes its way into into everyday life and workflow, certain devices, applications, and networks disrupt the norm and begin to impact behavior. It is this disruptive technology that over time, influences how people work, communicate, share, or make decisions. The question is at what point does emerging technology or new behavior become disruptive? And more importantly, what systems, processes, and protocol are in place that recognize disruption, assess opportunity, and facilitate the testing of new ideas? The time to answer these questions is now.

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Social Business and The Age of Infrastructure

It’s inevitable that in many discussions of social media and social business development, someone will ask:

What’s the next big thing? What happens now?

The next big thing isn’t big at all. Well, at least in terms of flashiness or bombastic, noisy fanfare. It’s not even likely to be sexy.

If you care about where social is going next, it’s time to get your sleeves rolled up and dig in. Because the era we’re approaching is in the merging of social at a superficial level, and social at a foundational and organizational level. And that’s going to get messy.

There is and always be a bleeding edge for things, and people that somehow manage to make their livings and livelihoods from predicting what that edge will look and feel like. But there’s precious little room on the brink, and when it comes to building something sustainable that applies to your existing business, there is much work to be done.

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The Dilemma’s Innovator: Innovation and Change as the New Pillars of Business

If necessity is the mother of invention, then perhaps imagination is the source of innovation.

In December 2010, I was given the opportunity to write the cover story for Entrepreneur Magazine. The article, “Change: Lessons on What’s Next,” explored the innovation behind three (well four) companies — Foursquare, Square + Twitter, and Zappos. Throughout the years, I’ve had the opportunity to spend time with Dennis Crowley, Jack Dorsey and Tony Hsieh. And over that time, I’ve observed inherent traits that I believe represent the future of business and how companies engage with customers to create a more adaptive and connected infrastructure to compete for the future.

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Put Some Skin In The Game

Building something entirely new. Creating something fresh from something that existed. Evolving business to a new place. Changing a culture. True innovation. Standout success. Attaining influence or authority. Building a devoted following. Creating lasting relationships.

There’s one thing that all of these have in common…

You must invest something of personal value and worth.

It might be your ideas, your energy, or your reputation. Maybe it’s something tangible, like money or resources. Perhaps it’s a bit of all of those combined.

But leading – truly leading from within, not just sitting in a position of annointed leadership – requires an element of vulnerability that few are willing to risk. It means betting on your own hand, and being part of the things that you’re asking others to do with or for you.

If you have little invested, you have little to lose. And it’s hard to trust your intentions if you can’t be bothered to commit – and risk losing – something you value in the name of the thing that you want.

Let your team, your volunteers, your customers, peers and colleagues know what you’re willing to put on the line to achieve something. Don’t just work on a project. Don’t just build a plan and execute on it or delegate it. Invest in it. Personally and professionally. Put some skin in the game.

And let them see you do it.

Then watch how the game – and your own perspective – changes dramatically.

Amber Naslund

image by banspy

Who owns your brand?

In the past, marketing owned the brand, using a tightly controlled set of messages piped through carefully selected channels to ensure brand “ownership” through control….but that’s no longer the case.  The increasing integration of social media into our consumers’ lives has shifted brand ownership away from marketers and into the hands of the consumer.

We marketers like to think that social media is primarily a set of tools for our marketing purposes, but in reality, social media is also a strong set of tools our consumers use to share and influence opinion about our brand.   Our consumers now have “the channel of me.” Consumers’ opinions now create the “reality” of the brand — if enough consumers say negative things about your brand, your brand loses its credibility, and (thankfully) vice versa.

There are two main ways we can react to this change:  we can fight it or accept it. I highly recommend accepting it.  If we fight to retain control of our brands, we are likely to hold on so tight that we suffocate the flexibility and outward-looking awareness our brand needs for survival.

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Build Relationships, Not Billboards!

The marketing paradigm is shifting with much greater “power to the people” facilitated by social media.  If you want to continue to reach your market, it’s not about advertising any more, but about building relationships.

Consider the following differences:

Advertising Building Relationships
1.     Telling

2.     Starts with “me” (the brand, the product, the service)

3.     Focuses on “what can you give me?

4.     Goal:  instant impact

5.     Where’s the money?

1.     Listening, hearing, empathizing, asking,

2.     Starts with “you” (the customer’s needs, wants, interests and expectations)

3.     Focuses on “how can I serve you?

4.     Goal: ongoing engagement

5.     Who are the people?

1. Telling vs. Listening

It may sound counterintuitive, but if you truly want to be heard above the growing social media “noise,” you need to listen.  Listen to what your consumers and potential consumers are saying before you even put one word out there:  What are they saying, what are they feeling, what are their pain points, what solutions do they need?   Then when you do “speak” (type), empathize with them and ask them questions.

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