Monday, September 7, 2009

Cherry Picking the Social Media Books

Malcolm Gladwell has a new book "The Tipping Point" [of Social Media] that describes some new words on familiar social media marketing ideas. Some highlights:

The Law of the Few- The Law of the Few is surprisingly simple. Through studies and testimonials Gladwell found that a majority of people can usually be connected to one person. Like a “6 Degrees of Kevin Bacon Game” on steroids, Gladwell determined that there are three people that tend to connect others: Connectors, Mavens, and Salesmen. The connectors are the people that can quickly disseminate a message to many. Mavens are those who study certain things very carefully and can always help you out. And salesmen are persuasive, knowledgeable and want to help you. By knowing your trusted mavens, your ultra-connected connectors and your salesmen, your message can easily be shared. Will it be viral? Perhaps not, but at least you are giving it a chance.

The Stickiness Factor- When developing the show Seasme Street, creators saw that when a child was confused or bored they didn’t learn the lesson. It wasn’t sticky. In the same way your application/message/ iPhone app or whatever Web 2.0 tool you have need to make sure its sticky. If it isn’t then it won’t travel anywhere.

The Power of Context- In any situation where a message is being spread, context plays a huge factor. In The Tipping Point, Gladwell examines the context of large scale events like the crime on subways in New York. You don’t need to go to that scale, but if you want to spread a message, you do need to know the context. For example, is Twitter the best place for your brand or are you just trying to jump on the hottest technology?

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