Archive for August, 2014

Catching up with the Customers

Posted on: August 17th, 2014 by Fransgaard No Comments

The Internet as an industry has grown up. Gone are the Wild Wild West days. Today we have established industry standards and educations for our people. An industry that has found its equilibrium.

Who are we kidding? This is nowhere near the reality.

The reality is that the digital landscape is shifting by the minute. Social media? Mobiles? Internet of Things? While we are trying frantically to keep up, the Customers have already adopted these things.

Both our clients and our industry as a whole is playing catch up with Customers. Yes, that’s true. Customers are leading the way.

The speed of adoption dictates where we need to focus… and boy, do we need to focus fast. I don’t need to remind any of you that those who have not yet adopted a Mobile First methodology are falling fast behind because the Customers are already there! They are already impatiently looking for the next thing.

What can you do?

As a Client of digital services

You have to listen to customers. Really listen. Yes, there will be some uncomfortable truths to face, but if you don’t, you fall behind. Adapt core creative methodologies to question and dissemble everything and put it back together in new ways, new business models.

As a Digital Professional

You have to accept you don’t know it all. No matter how senior, you have to go into every single project assuming you know nothing. That’s hard. I know it. I constantly battle myself form going “I’ve done this before” because the truth is: I have not.

As a Student

Learn to adapt now. It becomes hard as you get older and more experienced. Make a point of never ever doing the same twice. If you do what you’ve done before, it is already out of date.

To All of Us

Accept The Internet is moving too fast to keep up with and that the Socratic Paradox is ever real in the business of digital.

Say it out loud: “I know that I know nothing”.

Tips on how to decide which Linkedin connections to keep

Posted on: August 10th, 2014 by Fransgaard 3 Comments

Looking at my Linkedin profile I realised that having 500+ connections simply doesn’t look good. The “+” makes it look like I’ve been hoarding contacts and frankly doesn’t represent who I do maintain contact with.

Today I went through an exercise of reviewing my Linkedin connections and I thought it would be an idea to pen down the thoughts I made to guide me through the selection process.

Who to keep

I made myself a list of qualities in my contacts that would affect my professional career, now or in the future, to help guide me through the selection process.

  • People who I have communicated with recently
  • People I work with, colleagues or partners
  • People who have talents I may be needing in the near future
  • People who are in positions to influence my career now or in the near future
  • People in companies I may have contact with in my current role
  • People, who doesn’t match the above, but who trigger a gutfeel reaction suggesting I should keep them

Linkedin is not the only way of connecting with people

I had an important notion fairly early on when I was trying to figure out whether or not to delete a contact, who I’ve known for some time, but who doesn’t fit any of my qualifiers: Linkedin isn’t the only way of connecting. This person I know from Twitter and fact is removing the person as a Linkedin connection doesn’t change our Twitter relationship. In fact, that is where we’ve always been communicating.

Similarly, I have long-term friends as Linkedin connections who I am unlikely to cross paths with professionally. all of these people I am connected with via Facebook.

The result and risk

The result of my review has reduced my Linkedin connections from 700+ to 431. And I am quite happy with the result.

But the risk is offending people with my actions, which is why I’ve made sure that anybody I know are still connected with me through either Twitter or Facebook.

Where’s the trust gone?

Posted on: August 5th, 2014 by Fransgaard 1 Comment

Photo used with kind permission by Levi Neeson

I’ve been a fan of Jenna Marbles’ YouTube channel. They are my guilty pleasure online. Light entertainment… or so I thought. Recently Jenna celebrated her 200th video and 4 years on youtube that has turned into a career for her. The scale of what she has accomplished blew me away even though it shouldn’t have.

I contacted a prolific blogger and friend of mine, Mark Schaefer, asking whether he had ever written a blog post about the impact of video bloggers like Jenna and he offered me the opportunity to write a guest post for him.

And I started by writing:

Jenna Marbles is my guilty pleasure online, not sure why but probably because she presents herself as genuine

… hang on…”presents herself as genuine”?… hmm…. maybe: “seems genuine” or “comes across as genuine” or “appears genuine”…

It wasn’t until days after I realised that I had not considered just writing: “IS genuine”. Is.

Why was it so hard for me to accept somebody online is actually just being good old-fashioned genuine? No hidden agenda?

Is there any trust online at all?

If I complain about a company on Twitter, I am not doing it to help fellow customers or to inform the company. I do it to get something fixed. And the company replying aren’t doing it to please me. They are doing it to stop me from complaining to avoid looking bad to their other customers.

If a friend posts something on Facebook, do I trust it to be genuine? That selfie of her hugging a wine glass next to a bunch of smiling friends at “The Fat Duck”, are they actually genuinely having fun or are they just smiling to make their online alter ego look good?

As an industry we keep telling our clients that they need to built trust online, but how will they ever stand a chance if we can’t even trust each other as individuals online?

We all assume digital has brought us closer, but our instincts and senses, built up over centuries and vital parts to how we communicate and build trust, are being numbed by the invisible, but very solid veil digital communication has introduced between us as individuals.

Have we underestimating the value of physical contact and can we recreate it online?