Going back to Social Media Marketing Basics

, Head of New Media, Telstra

For the last couple of years I’ve had the good fortune to be the guest social media lecture for the ADMA Digital Marketing Course.

The presentation keeps away from the ‘big numbers’ and focuses on the essence/dynamics of social media. One slide highlights The Cluetrain Manifesto.

Markets are conversations
For those of you not familiar with The Cluetrain Manifesto, it was originally developed as a website. The Cluetrain Manifesto is believed to be one of the first websites published as a book. The Cluetrain Manifesto focuses on how the internet can transform traditional business practices.

During the lecture I refer to the first three manifestos. They are:

  1. markets are conversations;
  2. markets consist of human beings, not demographic sectors; and
  3. conversations among human beings sound human. They are conducted in a human voice.

Businesses are built around people

At the same time I was preparing to give the lecture, I was reading ‘Grouped’ written by Paul Adams.


Paul was the closing presenter at Facebook’s Hack Sydney session. You can read more about what Paul discussed in my post about Facebook’s Hack Sydney event.


In ‘Grouped’, Paul wrote “experiences are better when businesses are built around people”.


Paul’s proof point is Facebook photos. Paul states that “Facebook Photos was not built around the content, it was built around the people, and people cared much more about seeing their friends than seeing high-resolution photos, or beautiful landscapes.”

Every so often we need to check back in to get a reality check.

Drowning in the minutia of emails and meetings, revisiting The Cluetrain Manifesto and reading Grouped was an opportunity to return to basics.

It refreshed my belief that social media can help refresh the traditional corporation and make it relevant in today’s connected world.

It re-enforced the idea that corporations need to think and act differently when including new media into their mix of marketing assets and strategies.

It reminded me that corporations need to move away from ‘customer centricity’ rhetoric and move towards a ‘business built around people’.

I’ve written this post because I got a lot out of my unexpected ‘recalibration’ and wanted to share the experience.

What have you read or watched recently where you benefited from ‘going back to basics’?

This blog was provided by Mike Hickinbotham, Head of New Media for Telstra from his blog Socialising the Corporation.


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