Governments create them but are afraid of them. Businesses thrive on them.
These days a big crowd can turn up on your doorstep just as easily as having 9.7 Million people know your company broke my guitar and didn’t pay for it. Our interview by News 10 Sacramento about th flash mob that converged on Westfield Group’s Galleria at Roseville proved to be a valuable case. The mall had a fire not long ago that caused some structural damage. When thousands converged on the mall in holiday spirit to see a choral group, the mall was evacuated for fear of shopper safety. You can read the article or watch the news reel.
Here’s a quick list of the social business lessons learned from our perspective:
- Have a social media strategy
- Be certain that your strategy includes policy and procedure listening, monitoring and participating in conversations with your customers.
- Be certain your strategy includes a procedure for what to do when you hear something, like a lot of people are about to be at your building.
- More than our typical mantra of communication and collaboration benefits, like speeding the innovation process, social business technology can serve to mitigate risk.
- Embrace the cultural shift to rallying a gathering via the social web quickly. Public spaces are REALLY public. Thousands of people can converge on your doorstep – potentially within hours. If you’re in the conversation you can be ready with plenty of hot cocoa.
- The risk = not doing anything.
- To be quoted on the news as having “no comment” is a bad thing. Losing all your retail business during Christmas week is criminal!
Anybody concerned with social business ought to be paying close attention to whatâ€™s currently happening in the Middle East, since some of the organizing strategies in play there can be applied to any cause or business objective involving social change.
Weâ€™ve long admired “Here Comes Everybody” author Clay Shirky. He brings up plenty of thoughts that social business advocates should find relevant.
â€œPolitical struggle is a result of coordinated action. Governments arenâ€™t afraid of informed individuals; theyâ€™re afraid of synchronized groups.â€
WeÂ wish more social business advocates would understand the power of platforms like Facebook, Twitter, and Meetup to begin forming these sorts of synchronized groups. Too many social business advocates are failing to grasp the potential for using simple online tools to build business activist-oriented communities.