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Perry Belcher’s Seven Secrets of Social Media

(Thanks to Mike Fruchter‘s post on Louis Gray’s blog for pointing out this video)
Perry Belcher provides a very entertaining video on the etiquette of social media.  Though he styles it toward individuals, the ideas are just as applicable to organizations and brands.  Watch the whole video, but here is his list of seven secrets:

  1. Be remarkable
  2. Be fun
  3. Be helpful
  4. Be supportive
  5. Be controversial
  6. Be resourceful
  7. Don’t be an asshole (i.e, don’t be a flogger)

If you like that one, you might also want to watch his How to Make Money with Social Media.  It does not go into any monetization details, but it expands the etiquette nicely into a pattern of good marketing behavior on the social Web.

Posted in: Adapting, Business, Internet, Society

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KM vs. Social Media: Beware the Warmongers

In a stark example of ageist bigotry parading as insight, Venkatesh Rao is trying to instigate a war that does not, and need not, exist.  He believes that knowledge management (KM) advocates and social media (SM) advocates are at odds with each other.  His divisive post imagines a war between KM and SM.  Evidently, after encountering resistance to his polarized view of SM, he authored the dense tirade as a call to a war that does not exist.  His post brings to mind William Randolph Hearst’s quote, “You furnish the pictures, I’ll furnish the war.” (Although that is history and Rao dismisses the importance of such institutional knowledge.  He’s doomed to repeat a great deal of history, I suppose.)
I see no reason why we should respond to Rao’s call to war.  His evidence in support of war are little more than petulant responses to people’s inevitable resistance to change.  He supports his opinions with fallacy in an attempt to create generational conflict.  My personal favorite: “…RSS and Mash-ups are culturally Gen X ideas…” I wonder how Dave Winer, the primary inventor/advocate of RSS, would feel about that statement since he falls solidly in the Boomer generation that Rao seems to disdain.  Statements like “The Boomers don’t really get or like engineering and organizational complexity,” beg a cultural flame-war.  But I will resist.  Instead, let me make a case for KM and SM peace.
A few bad apples don’t spoil the whole bunch. All change champions encounter resistance – sad fact of the human condition.  And many entrenched incumbents can be especially resistant to the status quo.  But we paint with too broad a brush if we let a handful of stubborn dinosaurs define an entire group of people.  I have been in KM for over a decade and have been active in SM since the term was coined.  And amongst the advocates of both, I see many more examples of integration than I do of segregation.
Social media actualizes the idealism of KM. In the workshops I deliver on Enterprise 2.0, I often refer to it as “KM 1.53”  This alludes to the fact that the goals of E2.0 are nearly identical to the goals of KM.  E2.0 (SM in the workplace) delivers the platforms and tools necessary to reach the KM ideals we have sought for years.  While the inherent ungoverned disorder of social media seems radical to some KM administrators, most KM advocates welcome these tools in their quest to free information and improve performance.
Most KM practitioners recognize the value of SM.  I have presented keynotes and workshops on SM at KM Australia and KM Asia.  At both, I have found many more eager adopters than resistant dinosaurs.  Based on my experience, most KM practitioners are excited about SM tools and platforms and are looking for ways to incorporate them into the current KM strategies as soon as possible.  As for the less structured aspect of SM, the response to my “Abandon Your Content Management System – KM in the age of GooTube” presentation at KM Australia was very positive.
Rao ended his post with his prediction of how the war will end.  Please read it yourself, but I would summarize it as: the old resistant people will die and the young righteous people will prevail.  I will close with my prediction of how the peace will continue:  Our technology and society will continue to evolve; people will continue to be resistant to (but finally adapt to) change; youth will continue to disdain their elders until they become tempered by wisdom; and the opportunities to learn and prosper will continue to grow for those wise enough to do so.

Posted in: Adapting, Business, Learning

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Web 2.0 Executive Bootcamp in London

As I mentioned in the last post, I seem to be a glutton for punishment.  So, three days after I return from Sydney, I will be jetting off to London to deliver a special version of the Web 2.0 Executive Bootcamp.  I have had the great fortune to work with Scott Gavin of Applied Trends and I think we have put together a great day of learning.  If you will be in London on September 30, come join us!

Posted in: Events, Internet

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Heading Down Under Again – Web Directions South

Because I’m a glutton for punishment and it has been nearly 2 months since I was in Australia, I will be heading down under this Friday.  I will be delivering the Web 2.0 Executive Bootcamp as a workshop annex to Web Directions South.  And I’m very pleased that Stephen Collins of Acid Labs will be joining me in the delivery.  If you are going to be in Sydney next week, it is still not too late to sign up.  See you there?

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Photo Blogger 2.0

This week I delivered a two-day masterclass on Web 2.0 and Enterprise 2.0 in Singapore.  As always, I had a host of interesting participants, one of which was Reeda Malik, Brunei’s top photo blogger.  Reeda was nice enough to take some shots during the class, both from the first day and from the second day. I’m grateful to Reeda for posting the pictures for me and all the participants to enjoy.
The class went extremely well and I thank all the participants for everything they taght me.  And now it is on to deliver a keynote and workshop at KM Australia 2008.

Posted in: Events

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The Road to Singapore (and Australia)

Just wanted to post a note that I will be on travel the next two weeks, so the posting here may be even slower than usual.  I will be in Singapore delivering Web 2.0 & Enterprise 2.0 Foundations masterclass July 17-18 and delivering a keynote and masterclass at KM Australia July 21-23.
My keynote at KM Australia is entitled Abandon Your Content Management System: KM in the Age of GooTube.  I hope to get a synopsis of it up here as a post soon.
I’m looking forward to being down-under and I hope they are having a mild winter so I can enjoy some of my short stay.  If you will be in Singapore or Australia, it’s not to late to register (I think).  See you there?

Posted in: Events, Off Topic

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Steve Ballmer Made Me Wear a Tie

Steve Ballmer at MIX08 in MilanToday I had the great pleasure of presenting a session on Web 2.0 and Enterprise 2.0 at MIX08 Italy in Milan. I was there as a guest of our strategic partner in Italy and Germany, Reply. The day was kicked off with a keynote by Microsofy CEO, Steve Ballmer (see videos here). There are other posts about his comments on Yahoo! So I thought I would just share some of my thoughts on the other parts of his talk (and the follow-up Q&A).
Content + Community + Commerce was the mantra for the talk. This seems to be there way of recognizing that software is not the main driver in IT any longer. Now it is all about getting people what they want (content) in a social experience of their choosing (community) and, of course figuring out how to monetize that (commerce) so you can stay in business. The one thing that struck me from the talk was that the only monetization model he talked about was advertising. While I’m sure they are considering service subscription models as well, he didn’t mention it. During Q&A the theme came up again when he said the reason they were after Yahoo! was that they were a advertising and marketing platform that was already at “critical mass.”
Software + Services is the solutions theme for Microsoft. This is there take on how they will help us serve the C+C+C from above. Despite Ray Ozzie’s release of Live Mesh and some observations that MS finally sees that software is dead, Steve stressed the continued importance of software. He described how software will evolve in an environment that wisely balances desktop, Web, enterprise, and devices. Seems to me the “software vs. services” debate is semantic posturing. In either case we will still need engineers writing code that moves bits.
“Consumer, consumers, consumers.” That quote and his discussion of consumers was the only part Steve’s talk that made me cringe and think they still don’t get it. In this day and age, no business should look at their users/customers as consumers. I agree with Matt Jones’s definition of consumers. The people who use our products are our partners, not mindless consumers. Empowering people to partner with us to make our products better is at the heart of Web 2.0. If Microsoft does not get this, they are going to have a tough row to hoe.
Looking foward five years. Finally, perhaps the most animated and interesting part of his talk were his visions of the future of computing. They really were about services (supported by software) that reflected the pending convergence in media and technology. To paraphrase badly, he told a brief story envisioning a future when he is golf watching “TV” and shouts “Hey Bill, did you see Tiger sink that putt”. His intelligent “TV” would recognize that Steve wanted to say that to Bill Gates and would instantly find if Bill Gates was available for Steve. Bill’s “cell phone” would let Bill (sitting on a beach somewhere) know that there was a message from Steve and play the audio of Steve’s comment as well as the video of Tiger’s putt. Steve would respond, “that was nice – what kind of ball is he using?” Steve would rewind the video, zoom in on the ball, click it and get instant information about it and a link to buy it. He would tell Bill the brand and order two boxes for them. This was just one example of his crystal ball gazing – he also discussed ePaper and projectable surfaces.
Overall, his talk was interesting but didn’t break any new earth. But it did make me wear a tie. I try to avoid wearing a tie like I try to avoid root canal surgery. When I asked my Reply hosts if a tie was required for my presentation, the response was something along the lines of, “we know Americans don’t really wear ties – let’s wait and see what Steve does…” So, I was counting on Steve to go tieless. Wisely, he chose to show respect for the host culture and he wore a tie. So, I followed suite.  The most difficult part of the whole day was remembering how to tie my tie…

Posted in: Business, Events, Internet

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Microsoft MIX08 in Italy – See You There?

Steve BallmerJust a quick note:  If you will be in Milan on March 23, drop by the Crowne Plaza Hotel for MIX08 Italy.  Steve Ballmer and his Microsoft crew will be giving the Microsoft spin on what is hot in Internet development in the morning.  I will be joining a host of colleagues from our Italian partner company, Reply, for additional presentations on delivering Web 2.0 and Enterprise 2.0 solutions in Italy in the afternoon.  So, if you decide that Milan sounds like more fun than another year of Web 2.0 Expo in San Fran, drop on by!

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Web 2.0 in Italian and German

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This week I have been in Milan delivering train-the-trainer for our Web 2.0 University™ (W2U) partners at Reply. Reply has license to exclusively deliver the Web 2.0 Executive Bootcamp, Enterprise 2.0 Bootcamp, and Ajax Bootcamp in Italy and Germany. It has been an exciting week working with the dedicated and experienced folks at Reply to localize our learning content for their target audiences.
Reply E2.0 TTTDuring the training we discussed how many of the Web 2.0 ideals and applications play out differently in Italy and Germany. From the legal restraints that make music sites like Pandora impossible to the generally more conservative attitude toward social applications, Reply is customizing the W2U content to deliver outstanding learning to their clients. They have become quite Web 2.0 savvy and I’m sure they will do a great job leading the 2.0 revolution in Europe. So, if you want to leverage the competitive advantage of Web 2.0 or Enterprise 2.0 in Italy or Germany, visit the Reply W2U site.
Unlike most trips abroad, I took some extra time to enjoy Milan. Friday evening I had the great pleasure of being treated to dinner by Piero Rivizzigno, the CEO of the soon to be released, Glossom.com. (This social website will focus on design and fashion – link to come soon where you can learn all about it.) Piero took me into the city center for the best fresh mozzarella I have ever had as well as traditional Naples pizza that was fantastic. Piero mentioned that the owner of the Buffalo Ristorante (I think that was the name – confirmation to come) is hoping to open a restaurant in Georgetown in DC. That would be a wonderful development! Piero was a great host and our discussion of the future of social applications was illuminating. We discussed data portability and Piero was spot-on in his observation that website-owners who benefit from the content we provide need to do a better job of sharing their revenue (at least a small portion) with us.
Saturday I got to play tourist in full glory and traipsed all over Milan city center. I visited the Parco Palestro, the Castle of Milan, and the Milan Duomo and the Galleria Vittorio Emanuele II. Sadly, the battery on my camera bit the dust at the Duomo, but here are a few pictures:
The Palestro in the Parco Palestro…

Milan Palace

The drawbridge at the southern “Little Bridge” entrance to the Castle of Milan:

Milan Castle Drawbridge

Inside the Caste of Milan (or as it should be called – the castle of cats – they owned the moat):

Milan Castle

Approaching the Duomo Church (both inside and out, it is simply magnificent):

Milan Duomo

My personal favorite: A beautiful fountain fighting the unbelievable moss that it swallowing it with the Duomo behind:

Milan Fountain near Duomo

Now it is on to the butt-busting flight from Milan to Frankfurt to DC and back to my family (hopefully my son will look up long enough from Adventure Quest to notice I’m home ;o).

Posted in: Business, Internet, Off Topic

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Web 2.0: Show Me The Money (Part One)

Here is a simple illustration I put together for a client that displays the six primary monetization methods on the Web. Is is a simplification and expansion on a post from Dion Hinchcliffe from awhile back. The only real “Web 2.0” advances in monetization lurk in the “back door” that was opened up using APIs. Recently, Larry Dignan reiterated a common refrain that APIs are the future of Web monetization based on very rough numbers of how much Amazon makes from its numerous Web Services (additional interesting point here). While the numbers are not yet firm they are the only new monetization method that has arisen with Web 2.0. The illustration shows the monetization methods from the traditional “front door” of a Website as well the new opportunities opened up by APIs (all presented simply enough for even the busiest executive):

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And here is a very brief summary of the six methods:
Advertising: The Web site owner sells spots on the website (“inventory”) to advertisers. There are numerous models for this type of monetization. Some are fixed price, some are per displays (“impressions”), other are based on the visitor clicking or taking some other action from the add link. Example: AOL sells premium ad banner locations for up to $500K per day.
Subscriptions: The Web site owner only makes some or all of the content or functionality available to customers who create an account and use a credit card (or other means) to subscribe to use the content or services. Rhapsody.com charges users $10/month to be able to listen to millions of songs from thousand of artists anytime, anywhere (online – additional charge to download a song).
Retail: The Web site sells products or services directly to the site visitor. This is a single transaction as opposed to an ongoing subscription. Example: iTunes makes it money be selling individual songs for download.
Donations: The Web site allows people who find the site’s content or services useful to donate money to keep the service functional. Example: RadioParadise.com is a user-supported online radio station that generates all its revenue from listener donations.
Fees: This is a B2B charge where the Web site makes some or all of its content or services available to other businesses for a fixed fee. Example: Amazon.com opened many of its online merchant functionality to other companies and generated an additional $250M in revenue in 2005.
Commissions: This is a B2B charge where the Web site makes some or all of its content or services available to other businesses and collects a percentage of the other business’ resulting revenue. Example: Google AdSense allows everyone to put Google text ads on their website and get a percentage of the money Google makes from the advertising.
And that is a wrap of the original document. But…
Coming Soon: Web 2.0 Show Me The Money (Part 2) – wherein I revisit the illustration and update it based on recent developments and the great monetization summary article from Professor Michael Rappa. (I will try to get part two up in the next 30 days!). In the meantime, please leave comments especially if you can point out everything I missed!

Posted in: Business, Internet

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