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Karen, Valeria -- and customers aren't the only participants in the conversation.

By trying to control (or by not being able to manage) your message, you risk cutting off relationships with potential or current employees. (And sadly, for some, this is actually OK...but that starts to veer off into a different topic.)

Valeria

What you're saying is true. Too often, business adopts an "us vs. them" attitude towards their customers. This one sided approach stresses dominance versus value, and once people feel excluded (ie. they don't feel that they are part of the brand relationship) they will think twice about buying your product or service.

Social media stresses the "how", but it also gives companies answers as to the "why."


@Anne -- the problem is that firms are counseled to "use" social media by agencies that are clueless as to how it really needs to work. So they start a blog to launch a new product or a line of products and nobody is accountable internally to facilitate the conversation. Because they think it's just another tool they have to push and control the message. Social media is not a program, it's a dynamic -- very different!

@Karen -- if the messages we are working on inside organizations were relevant, human, useful; if the people were genuine, personable, open, we would not have the need to exclude the people we are trying to reach and influence from those conversations. If social media taught me anything at all (on top of being Italian and incapable of not saying what I think) is that the most important piece is attitude, how you show up. Which was true of social dynamics and communities before we moved it online.

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