The new gymnastics of business requires you to make your activities even more of a balancing act. Promote or not promote your stuff? This is the question. If you ask yourself the question, you're already working on balancing.
These tools are amplifiers - they will highlight what you do and magnify it. You could be small and act big, you could be big and act nimble. Increasingly, you can go all the way to niches that were unthinkable with traditional media. It's the beauty of the Web and some say, its risks - it makes your trace permanent.
Pass the test on the balance beam and you're now facing the vault - scale. How do you grow the number of your relationships and still stay personal and intimate?
Less Volume, more Connections
As marketers you're used to thinking in terms of volume - cast as wide a net as possible to capture as large a slice of the sample percentage. This kind of thinking is deceptive, as it assumes that individuals among that mass will self-identify. They might not. They do not.
If the message doesn't speak directly to someone on their own time, when they need to know about something, then it is a beautiful waste of time. So much time goes into orchestrating that piece and that list, yet the process stops too soon, when information is still very general or generic.
That's why blogs and social networks have become so important in the mix - it's the customization, the adaptation of that information to specific needs that is attractive. Information gets customized in the comments - activated through participation, pulled by those who are interested.
Scale with Social means Team
In social media individuals can self-select - vote themselves into a conversation - usually on the basis of their relationship with someone. While the more successful you become, the more that intimate relationship with individuals is hard to maintain, scale is easier to achieve using this bottom up approach. Because as you do that, others will step in to become nodes in the conversation.
Is team one of the new customer relationship management tools on social? I like the idea of team. It's still a group small enough to stay in the game together, yet bigger than just you - scale. You can still be the quarterback, the orchestrator of your business social media symphony.
Focus on the Right things
The majority of our time is still spent on the preparation of the message. While that's important, testing it over and over in real time is what makes it better and more relevant to the individuals you are hoping to attract. When it comes to connecting, what scales?
- professional conduct
- meetings of the minds
- diversity of ideas
- open entryways
- game changing moves
Just like vaulting, proficiency involves both difficulty and form. The judges in this competition for attention also look at how many interactions (or somersaults and twists) you have over time - with them.
In part three, we will talk about both balancing and scaling so that the pendulum doesn't swing wildly in either direction.
What have I not covered? How do you scale? How do you spend your time on social networks? Can you be everywhere you need to be and still manage to be responsive on each?
[image by Raphael Goetter]