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CSRA Milestones: Ten Years of Experiential Social Media

CSRA Milestones: The First Ten YearsCSRA milestones reflects on my first ten years of experiential social media, seen through the eyes of clients I’ve served. I’ll share what I learned about what outcomes we got in each engagement as well as how it happened that I developed and pioneered experiential, which if a repeatable process for developing trust and profit at scale.

If you’d like to watch this post instead, just click the thumbnail button.

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Converging Trends and Technologies Enabling the Police State

Technologies Enabling the Police StateTechnologies Enabling the Police State describes the inevitability of pervasive surveillance, how it’s developing, and how we can act now to maintain the maximum degree of freedom. This is Part1 of a series on autonomy in the digital age. Personal and Collective Actions to Maintain Autonomy (Part2) is a how-to post, while Police State Scenarios (Part3) discusses ways that collective loss of autonomy may unfold.

Despite their grim titles, these posts are not intended as doomsday writings, and I don’t intend to say that I think a police state is being developed intentionally. My conclusion is rather that the technologies of mass control are developing rapidly, and the risk is significant that some group will seize control of them in the foreseeable future. I think you’ll find some of their points surprising, perhaps even breakthrough. Please let me know in comments!

I did not want to write this post, and I doubt that you want to read it; however, as I explain here, we’re at a pivotal point of human history. We are rapidly losing our individual and […]

On Autonomy, Artificial Intelligence and the Internet of Things

Autonomy Artificial Intelligence and the Internet of ThingsAutonomy Artificial Intelligence and the Internet of Things reflects on how people’s autonomy will be affected by software-powered devices and systems that are rapidly permeating our individual and social lives.

Although this noodle has a strong personal angle for me, I also have the unusual benefit of having regular conversations with people who are leading the redesign of our “environment.” By superimposing digital devices, sensors, and “intelligence” onto the physical world, designers, engineers, policy makers, behavioral economists, neuroscientists, nanoscientists, and investors, just to name a few, are changing how we perceive and interact with our “world,” so I’ll also bring my insights from those conversations to it. Finally, I’ll consider creator and user points of view on autonomy artificial intelligence and the Internet of things.

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Omni-Channel From Brand and Agency Viewpoints: DAA Chicago Symposium

Omni Channel From Brand and Agency Viewpoints: DAA Chicago SymposiumOmni Channel From Brand and Agency Viewpoints takes you behind the curtain of the digital provider world. The audience of the Digital Analytics Association’s Chicago Symposium was focused on omni-channel from the point of view of how its moving parts functioned because members buy and sell media and marketing content. Brand and agency digital professionals are caught in the tidal wave of data, which is straining legacy processes and relationships to the limit.

However, “Attribution” stole the show from omni-channel—and, for a fascinating reason. The same capabilities that enable big data give ecommerce vendors the ability field solutions that “attribute” the value of each media asset to the customer purchase. Hence, attribution is a massive accounting exercise, but it is disruptive to the digital media ecosystem because it enables, in theory, far more inclusive and granular counting of digital content’s impact on ecommerce or mcommerce or even in-store purchase. This is bringing accountability to digital and advertising firms. Just think of all the media that customers see before they purchase something. Agencies and vendors are […]

Digital Transformation's Personal Issue: It's the Key to Customer Experience

Digital Transformation’s Personal Issue reveals personal treatment to be the key to breakthrough customer experience, and it shows how digital social spaces enable Chief Digital Officers to use personal treatment to create more profit. Before they arrive, though, they need to lead their organizations through the Personal Issue. Digital Transformation's Personal Issue

The Personal Issue refers to a perceived conflict between empowered customers and profit-starved companies. Digital social technologies are enabling customers to “re-personalize” business and society because their online interactions among themselves are personal, which is changing their expectations of all interactions.

However, businesses resist treating customers personally because they fear cost and inefficiency. They don’t understand the digital social economics of treating customers personally online, at scale.

Meanwhile, the missions of chief digital officers (CDOs) and chief customer officers (CCOs) are creating bold new “customer experience” and profits by using digital technologies to transform organizations, brands and businesses. They will fulfill their missions far more quickly and completely by using the key.

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Noodle XI: The Rise of Design and Fall of Nokia, RIM and Motorola

The Rise of Design Signaled the Fall of Nokia, RIM and MotorolaThe rise of design signaled the fall of Nokia, RIM and Motorola describes how engineering is becoming less important in distinguishing hightech and other products from each other. It also presages a seismic shift away from product towards customer experience in determining market leaders for people-oriented products and services. A very large portion of product companies will follow in the footsteps of these three former mobile phone titans unless they transform their focus from product features (engineering) to customer experience (design).

By no means do I imply that engineering is not important—in fact, it is more important than ever—I assert that it is less important than design in differentiating people-oriented products. Engineering is abstracted away from the customer/user of the product, and design explicitly addresses how the customer uses the product to attain outcome(s).

Design is to the Knowledge Economy what engineering was to the Industrial Economy.

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Chicago-Style Innovation 2013 [Lightbank Innovation Day]

Lightbank logoChicago-Style Innovation is my notes from Lightbank Innovation Day, which took place on 9 May 2013 at the City Winery (presentations) and Lightbank’s offices (networking). Throughout the day, it was obvious that the Knowledge Economy’s Social Channel was unfolding; entrepreneurs’ startups are stripping off an increasing breadth of enterprise processes and using digital social software to improve them. For example, Needle’s platform creates experts in user (customer) use cases and outcomes that outperform anyone at retail; Fieldglass, HighGround, Fooda, oDesk and TalentBin take aim at various parts of human capital while Aon Hewitt showed how to practice enterprise innovation on the inside; DoubleDutch aims to [at long last] digitize trade shows and conferences through its platform’s geosocial functions. Sprout Social and Contently offered social tools.

Presenters Gian Fulgoni, J Schwan and Ramon De Leon shared valuable advice for entrepreneurs, investors and enterprise executives. Fulgoni provided statistics that showed how mobile was eclipsing ecommerce and analog commerce; Schwan opened the audience’s eyes to Ubiquitous Computing and the Internet of Things, and De Leon showed the power of (pervasively ;^) being yourself.

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Ron May: Digital Social Pioneer

Ron May Digital Social Pioneer

Ron May, 1956-2013

Ron May Digital Social Pioneer, and the notorious Chicago hightech commentator and analyst, died on 23 June 2013. Since I knew Ron longer and better than many people, I’ll reflect on what I knew of his life and considerable gifts and contributions. Above all, I’ll try to convey what Ron taught me about the digital world, where he was a pioneer among pioneers.

I met Ron in late 1996 in Dick Reck’s office at KPMG, when The May Report was fledging. It was obvious that he was unusually smart and passionate and motivated, and I learned that these traits were the foundation of Ron May the person. Ron May cared, and he had strong opinions. He had a brilliant inquisitive mind and indefatigable energy. I had a few conversations with Ron about his health over the years, and I suspect that it had a large impact on how he felt and interacted in public.

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Pureplay Report: Advisory & Services Firm Social Business Adoption 2012

Pureplay Report: Advisory & Services Firm Social Business Adoption 2012 Pureplays address social business as transformation by definition because they have been launched to address emerging market needs that established players either do not yet understand or have yet to organize to address. Moreover, Pureplays are not adding social business to their existing services; they have been formed to practice social business. They are a small cohort in this research survey because they were constrained to social business and transformation as were advisory firms in other categories.

Pureplay firms are often smallish startups, so they are quite limited in some areas when compared to established legacy firms as in this research survey. From a market and client perspective, Pureplays represent a vital part of the market and can offer unique capabilities; however, clients need to approach them with “eyes wide open” because the way they serve clients varies considerably.

There are thousands of social media advisory Pureplay firms that are focused on marketing and promotion. Pureplays’ capabilities are largely colored by their founders’ backgrounds. Dachis Group, SideraWorks and SocialxDesign directly address […]

Enterprise I.T. Report: Advisory & Services Firm Social Business Adoption

Enterprise I.T. Report: Advisory & Services Firm Social Business Adoption 2012[UPDATED] Enterprise I.T. vendors are chiefly product businesses that specialize in large-scale “solutions,” and all contenders in this research survey field large services businesses. They are a diverse group that was selected based on their public activity relevant to social business transformation. For example, Salesforce.com is a leading cloud infrastructure and services provider that sells organizational flexibility, which synergizes with social. IBM, Dell and Hitachi are large product vendors, although IBM’s services business is now larger than its product divisions. Accenture, Infosys, Capgemini, TCS and Cognizant are large outsourcing providers, although Accenture’s roots are management consulting, and it subsequently developed a large outsourcing business. BearingPoint is regrouping after bankruptcy; its origin, like Accenture’s, was an audit firm spinoff (KPMG and Andersen respectively).

As you evaluate advisory firms that are moving into social business, it is useful to refer to their DNA. Enterprise I.T. firms scale largely by selling products or productized services. Many have “collaboration” solutions, and they tend to approach social business within the context of product strategy. Product vendors […]