My Latin teacher in high school used to say "quam carta cadit, scienza galoppat". Don't try to translate it; it's pidgin Latin (read: it's made up). What it means is that when we do not have the paper in front of us, our knowledge goes with it. That was the traditional way of looking at information. The new way is online.
That was a big shift for those of us who were not natives. We didn't grow up using the Internet and surfing the web. We learned, some of us better than others. I'm a bit timid with some applications, and being in a corporate environment, I still surf the web using Microsoft Explorer -- and I think it's version 6.0. I know, I know, that is terrible news.
It's what I discovered when I came in this morning. All my favorite bookmarks were gone. As in irretrievable, not found, deleted, nowhere in sight. Do you get the idea? Five years worth of research disappeared in seconds. Because I am not as wise as I'd like to be, I did not know that there was no backup anywhere. My IT department is running a virus scan, but I suspect I was naive and did not do what I could have done to save myself the aggravation and time.
How can I remember all the great sites I have visited in the last five years? I am grateful that I learned how to aggregate my feeds using Google homepage so the blogs I read are stored there. I had another idea for a post today, but I think this conversation is one worth having. I am exactly like the marketers and business people you are trying to reach.
I have enough knowledge of the web to be dangerous. I know I should be using better tools, like Ma.gnolia.com to bookmark my favorites. Downloading the Firefox browser and using that instead would have been smart. My good friend Chris Baskind told me that there's a free extension that backs up your bookmarks every hour. Not only that, it will synchronize your bookmarks with your other computers. Bookmark something at work, and it'll appear on your home machine.
Like your customers and clients, I get email marketing, I understand banner ads, and other forms of online ads and branding initiatives. From a benefits standpoint I can have a detailed conversation of what to use that would work best for the business I am marketing. I am lost when it comes to features. That is why it is so important to sell me the benefits and eventually teach me the features; I love partnering with companies that help me learn. They will get my business.
Shift happens and it is very easy to be caught in the middle of it. It is also easy to forget that the people you are talking with may not keep up with what you're saying. They know enough to give you a false indication of where they are on the spectrum of technical savvy. So they have an incomplete understanding of what you do -- and sell.
If you partner with me, and bring me along, you may have a business relationship for life.