Recurring Theme

A main theme can be seen here, running through the prior posts, and in blogging in general.  This theme is the fact that blogging and social media creates a strong sense of awareness.  Social happenings can be picked up across the world.  This awareness can create heightened expectations, and on a mass scale can be very powerful.  This theme is evident in the Arab spring.  The Arab spring was a revolutionary wave of demonstrations and protests in the Arab world that began in 2010.

The Arab spring can be viewed as a social media revolution.  Social media in this situation carried messages of freedom and democracy throught the Arab world, and caused revault among Arab people and their leaders and helped raised expectations to the level of political upheaval.  People who were isolated from such activism were, through social media, able to access the heat, establish common ground, and organise protests.

It has been noted that the twitter users tweeting about political change in the week before Hosni Mubaracks resignation increased by up to 10.  Facebook users created groups in opposition to rulers and bloggers were commentating the situation around the clock.  “The success of demands for political change in Egypt and Tunisia led individuals in other countries to pick up the conversation. It helped create discussion across the region.”

This shows how powerful social media and blogging can be.  To alter a number of full countries all because of this interactive network is a sure indicator of the power behind social media.

One of the many arab spring videos online:


Opportunities through Facebook

Facebook can serve as a platform for generating business opportunities.  The possibilites are endless when operating through facebook.  The sheer size of the website is jaw dropping and the number of people you can appeal to is an opportunity in itself.  However, there are certainly some specific ways to generate opportunity on Facebook.  The New Zealand olympic committee runs a facebook page to help keep the public in the loop regarding the New Zealand olympic team and other relevant info.  They saw an opportunity within Facebook to run numerous competition through the page.  These competitions generate awareness, create buzz and encourage the public to really get in behind our elite athletes.  Facebook provided the foundation and opportunity for The new Zealand Olympic committee to really capitalise and accumulate supporters.

‘Facing’ Business Relationships

Facebook is a supreme tool for making business connections and building business relationships.  Having relationships in business is important – bigtime.  “Without strong relationships, it is impossible to have success as a business owner,” posted Darren Dahl when quoting an established and respected consultant.  When these relationships exist, it is just as important to properly maintain them as it is to have them in the first place.  That is, the business on the other end of the relationship cant be treated like the old pal you only contact when you want help moving.  This is where Facebook can help.  It is a great way to not only keep in contact with business relatives but it can be a good way to mention or promote their business as a way of acknowledging them.  Jason Seiler, an illustrator who works with a Facebook page mentions and promotes big clients on the page when a job is complete.  He speaks highly of them and recommends their services to his followers over the web page.  This kind of ‘word-of-mouth’ promotion is a valuable to any organisation and it doesnt go unappreciated.  Facebook is a great tool for building on business relationships.

Feel free to share links to cases aligned with these.

Book of Face

Everybody knows Facebook is enormous.  In 2010, over 40% of the whole of the United States had an Facebook account.  As of last month, Facebook could boast 845 million active users… that is absurd exposure.  That is why virtually all social media savvy businesses will be operating a Facebook page currently.  Exposing your business and brand to those kinds of numbers is simply a no-brainer.

There are more perks to this networking hub than just exposure.  Facebook is a great tool for facilitating communications.  Niall Cook describes a perfect case of this in his book Enterprise 2.0.  He talks of Serena software, a large firm covering 18 countries and alot its employees working virtually.  Because of this thick online presence, Serena Software utilised Facebook in creating a private group for just its employees rather than coughing up time and money needed in creating a similar network within its own intranet.  Team members were able to be better connected, share a more parallel understanding, and spread morale and excitement, all within a private and confidential group inside Facebook.  One reason this kind of thing works so well is that many of the staff are already acquainted with Facebook and can apply their existing social habits to supplement their professional habits.  This proves the utilisation of social media is a weapon for facilitating communications.

Geolocational Social Media

Geolocation or geosocial networking is the use of real-world geographic locationing in the social media realm.  Commonly utilising mobile phone GPS and similar technology, it provides live location information and location-based services.  Corporations are delving deeper into social media, pushing past Facebook and Twitter and getting aboard the geolocation train.

Air New Zealand is initiating a scheme to capitalise on this opportunity through their employment of encouraging their customers to use, through the customers can win airpoints and gain other perks.  The gain for Air New Zealand is that they are able to ‘keep tabs’ on their customers and stay aligned to what they’re doing.  In Air New Zealand establishing and maintaining a profitable business relationship with, they have better exposure to their market (and vice-versa) and are able to better serve and appeal to their customer base.  Air New Zealand are able to remain consistently aware of their market and their market is consistently aware of Air New Zealand all through the geolocational social media scheme.  This awareness is an evident theme in social media.

Heard of this service?  Thoughts?

The Porous Membrane

The porous membrane is a concept introduced in the blogosphere by Hugh MacLeod.  It is a concept used to illustrate how corporate blogging works.  It describes the relationship between a corporation and its market, specifically addressing the conversations and communications between them.

MacLeods Porous Membrane

Click the Hugh MacLeod link for a full description but the image basically depicts the theory that the corporation (A) lies within its market (B) but the conversations are seperated and confined by a boundary (x).  This boundary is penetrated through the use of blogging and other social media, allowing inside information out but also outside information in.

The whole idea is for corporations to have an aligned opinion with their market.  MacLeod describes it perfectly with mega corporation Apple: they think iPods are cool and so do their customers.  Whereas huge misalignment would occur if Apple talked up an upcoming product, calling it the bee’s knees while the external converstion in the market was telling all that product was no-good.  This is because word of mouth and the opinion of peers counts for more than a corporations marketing opinion.

The best way to avoid this misalignment is through blogging.  Blogging in both A and B will perforate the membrane and allow the conversations to combine and blend.  This allows corporate conversation to spill out into the market and market conversations to suck into the corporation.  Ideal for all.  The conversations dilute through with one other and ultimately align.

Not only does the idea of the porous membrane and blogging create awareness but it is also mighty persuasive.  The knowledge gained through blogs can be more genuine than popular media and provide deeper insight into topics.  This insight is what perforates the membrane making it a sieve of good quality knowledge exchange.

Social Mediology

Perhaps the most appropriate way to open postings in this blog is to introduce what it is I intend to achieve.  I created social mediology with the intention of spreading the word and further communicating the power of social media as we know it today.  Mediology is loosely defined as the study of culture transmission within a society, culture in this case being the technology we live with and the media s part of that.  Through looking into online networking concepts, I will explore, link and post articles discussing social media and relevant cases.  These posts will bear a heavy business and organisational influence and more specifically, will explore how social media can impact in the business arena.  Feel free to chime in, offer your own opinions and links but most importantly, please enjoy!