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Noodle X: Anonymity, Marketing and Predicting the Future

Anonymity, Marketing and Predicting the Future shows that, although each culture has its own concepts of “anonymity” and “marketing,” anonymity will prove to have been a temporary phenomenon in most human cultures because communications technologies are counteracting it. Moreover, based on my studies of and experience with sociology, evolutionary psychology and technology, I observe that 20th century marketing is grounded in anonymity, so we can predict the future of marketing by exploring anonymity and its relationship to marketing.

In brief, marketing’s influence is most poignant when anonymity is high and the marketing “target” is ignorant of the product/service and how to use it. In this scenario, the target is most open marketing’s influence. Read on to learn how marketing is related to anonymity, where anonymity is going and how marketing can transform to strengthen its influence.

Marketing organizations that do not transform will be sidelined because anonymity is dissipating fast.

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Executive Summary: Advisory & Services Firm Social Business Adoption 2012

Executive Summary: Advisory & Services Firm Social Business Adoption 2012Advisory & Services Firm Social Business Adoption 2012 is a research survey that looks at social business advisory/consulting firms in a new way. Using quantitative methods, I compared consultants according to the needs of clients who want to transform their organizations with social business. The twelve metrics measure firms’ performance in business impact, sociality and transformation areas and rank firms within firm categories and overall.

Now prospective clients can compare Strategy firms, Big Four firms, Agencies, Analysts, Enterprise I.T. firms and Pureplays quantitatively. Moreover, consulting firms can use these metrics for guidance in building out their social business practices.

I launched CSRA in 2006, and we have always practiced social business as transformation. Client work in social business transformation enables me to see where the market is going, so this survey considers social business firms from that future state.

[UPDATE 8 Mar] Now available: “Executive Briefing” is even more summarized (14-slides) in two versions: Guidance for Clients and Guidance for Firms. Research survey results will be most useful if you follow the […]

Create More Opportunity with a Career Mission

You can create more opportunity with a career mission, especially when you don’t get distracted by traditional career or job search concerns like whether you have a “consulting” or “employment” relationship. Here I’ll share how you can create far more opportunity by changing your assumptions about work, tapping the Social Channel and aligning yourself with the emerging Knowledge Economy. To illustrate the point, I’ll use myself as an example because I’m a veteran of many types of “work arrangements.”

It’s the good news-bad news story of the almost-decade: legacy “work” and “jobs” have permanently gone by the wayside as the primary means for people to be productive in “modern” economies (bad news). However, people can create a higher quality of life by adopting a more flexible approach to work, and organizations are crying out for flexibility (good news).

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How Social Networks Change Strategy, Prediction and Decision-Making

Unusual strategy & management guide shows how to use social data to solve complex problems How Social Networks Change Strategy, Prediction and Decision-MakingBook Review: Everything Is Obvious* Once You Know the Answer/Duncan J. Watts

Everything Is Obvious* is an excellent how-to guide to understanding how social networks change strategy, prediction and decision-making. It offers practical techniques and profound insights for using social networks, big data and new ways of thinking to solve complex problems in business and government.

Intriguingly, the book also cites research that debunks several social media sacred cows.

Watts has an interesting point of view because he combines several disciplines: he began his career as a physicist before moving into sociology, so he strives to combine the quantitative, experimental methods of physics with maddeningly complex social problems. Moreover, he’s been running practical experiments at Yahoo! for several years, using search, Web and social data. Watts backs up his assertions with primary research that he has led or in which he has participated. He is also a very engaging writer.

I also highly recommend “Obvious” because it enables the […]

Knowledge Economy Products and The Future of Manufacturing

Knowledge Economy Products[UPDATED] Several profound market forces are preparing the ascendancy of Knowledge Economy products, which result from collaboration among designers, artists, engineers, customers and firms. This represents one of the Knowledge Economy’s most exciting-yet-disruptive elements: “products” will cease to be dominated by monolithic factories that mass produce virtually all items that people use and consume. Moreover, people have an inherent joy when they can make things for themselves, their friends and their families—and a dramatic new wave of creativity and innovation is imminent. To help you wrap your mind around Knowledge Economy products, this post will recall what happened to mass media and entertainment industries.

Knowledge Economy products are conceived, designed, prototyped and fabricated in the Social Channel. Best practices in open source, Agile development, design and Web development will unleash continuous innovation at a scale and pace we’ve never seen before. Knowledge and innovation will be free in the Knowledge Economy because all supporting processes will become an order of magnitude faster and cheaper. Firms and brands that do not recognize and respond quickly enough will become irrelevant.

Most brands can […]

Bank Branch Disruption Enables Unusual Opportunity

Branch disruption enables unusual opportunity for bank executives who consider transforming their relationships with clients. More generally, retail banking provides an excellent example of an Industrial Economy industry whose services are facing commoditization and weakening profits due to the waning of the Productized Channel of Value. In 2013, bank branch networks are under intense scrutiny because they are expensive, and client visits have been falling steadily for several years as e-banking and m-banking adoption have accelerated. Astute banks will use branches to transform their client relationships by leveraging the Social Channel. Here’s how they will do it.

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Social Business in Insurance: State Farm's Chicago Coworking Space

social business in insurance: State Farm's Next Door taps The Social Channel to engage millennials/Gen YNext Door Chicago is a newish concept for State Farm Insurance that’s a great example of social business in insurance. It differentiates the firm by interacting in the Social Channel. The Lincoln Park/Lakeview community center and coworking space is notable because its DNA is empowering people to improve their lives through financial education. Next Door offers free coworking space and wifi, classes on financial management that are free of product pitches, free events (some financial, some art showings and other diverse events), free conference rooms and an energetic environment. Only the optional coffee bar is paid.

Next Door’s main online presence is oriented toward free membership. Members can book space, sign up for classes and hold events. Here’s IDEO’s case study on the concept and design process.

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The Dirty Dozen Social Business Risks

How to Outperform by Managing the Social Business Risks that Slow Your Competitors

Social Business RisksBy understanding the dirty dozen social business risks, you can make fewer mistakes than your rivals and get more done for less money, so this may be one of the most valuable posts you read this year. Having advised executives in adopting disruptive technology since the 1980s, I have learned that hidden assumptions sabotage early adopters’ investments and delay desired business outcomes. Happily, early adopters can significantly diminish social business risks by looking for them and mitigating them with agile development methodologies. CSRA’s client work has shown that using a risk mitigation approach is the most effective way to increase social business return on investment.

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Size and Value of Bank Branch Networks

Banks are under intensifying profit pressure, so all are reexamining the size and value of bank branch networks. In How Many Bank Branches Do We Need in the U.S., posted in Celent Banking Blog, Bob Meara offers a brief discussion of the concept of “branch flexing,” as coined by Oliver Wyman to describe optimization. It’s no surprise that banks are questioning their massive branch expansions during the 2000s, especially in light of increased capital requirements and regulatory costs, which increase cost of operations. Moreover, margins are razor thin as interest rates are at historic lows.

What does this mean for branches? I’ll offer a surprising alternative.

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Social Business Policy: Boosting Legal Safety and Employee Engagement

Social Business Policy | social business management | best practiceSocial business policy (social media policy) engagements are some of the most interesting, revealing and critical engagements CSRA has done. Of course, organizations’ main motivation for creating social business policies is protecting themselves against possible legal threats caused by employee interactions online; however, a far greater threat is overemphasizing the legal threat and sabotaging employee engagement online. Well researched and crafted social business policy increases trust between the employer and employees—and among employees, leading to more appropriate online interactions, which burnish the firm’s reputation. Here, I’ll outline how you can use the process of creating the policy to manage legal exposure while increasing employees’ trust and productive social business activity.

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