At first I was thinking this would be a long speech, it was in actuality a short, crisp presentation followed by a spirited, fun and playful question an answer session. It far exceeded my expectations and Kevin Ryan should be commended for having this type of community event.
Now onto a discussion of his new book, Meatball Sundae. The foundation for a new economy is being built. The past several years have laid the foundation for a new industrial revolution.
Told the detailed story of Josiah Wedgewood and his high standards for pottery.
There are 14 main themes occurring right now in the world – though there are many smaller and industry specific trends playing out. These 14 trends are (I typed them fast in a live blog situation so I might not have them exactly right):
– Direct communication with customers is creating massive change
– Individuals can amplifying their voice and become a critic – these are not hassles to be dealt with. The answer is building an organization that thrives and survives on this…
– Having an authentic story is vital
– We don’t have attention spans anymore (why are you still reading this post? 😉 )
– The new marketplace long tail – very few organizations are embracing it
– Create innovation – If you can describe a job it can get done by somebody cheaper
– Google and the shredding of information and bundling
– Noise and infinite channels of communication
– Consumers can talk directly to consumers without the middleman or company
– The changing balance of scarcity and abundance – it’s hard to imagine people being bored
– Big ideas can reach many people quickly
– The shift from how many to who – the idea of being on the today show instead of a blog is higher value is over
– Democratization of the wealthy – the gap between the rich and poor is getting wider but the rich is going up
– Gatekeepers are more important as they distribute information yet less important as you can go around them easier than ever
After the short speech on the trends there was a free for question and answer session…
Is your marketing out of sync?
SG: They should say how change your marketing (what you do) so that it’s in sync with what the market demands.
Why don’t most companies get it yet?
SG: I spent many years selling advertising. People buy TV advertising, it’s fun and it’s not measurable. When the Internet came along and they went running to Yahoo! to buy ads that aren’t measuring. Google and Overture were used by small business people in the ad. The choice is Superbowl ads that don’t work and measurable ads that are harder to make work. It’s naïve to hope that they will shift in a month or a year. They will eventually have to shift. The prices will continue to go up. People still applaud the commercial not the SEM.
Where do you find thoughtleaders to lead organizations and instead of hiring people with “experience”?
SG: I wrote a post on a similar topic about the loss of relevancy of credentials today. Basically, there are two types of leaders qualified to do this:
– People who have managed change before
– Idea people who don’t necessarily know better
How do make a corporate blog work?
SG: Blogs don’t reach people, people reach blogs… You need to be quick and candid. It’s all about change and being iterative in nature.
Everyone attending SES Chicago will receive a copy of Seth’s book. I look forward to continuing our conversation and maybe even hearing his answers because Gmail’s javascritpt won’t be interfering with his in person appearance!