Posted by: pauditore | September 1, 2009

Authenticity on MVP: Social Media Hits the Front Page, Do You Trust Social Media?

Our vision for Myventurepad is to develop a network of small business people, owners, employees, marketers, influencers, customers and partners, which write about key issues impacting small businesses worldwide. In my view, MVP should focus on the seminal issues to provide real-world insight and experience that then can be leveraged by other small businesses.   Blogging is story telling in many ways; MVP blogs need to provide actionable information and most importantly innovation and ideas that can be used in small business. What we are seeing is that the lines between the core values of MVP and those of self promotion by new marketers are being blurred. To get something out of a community you need to provide value. MVP blogs should not be used to promote one’s own company and/or consulting services, nor should they be written by people who write science fiction, and by that I mean you actually have some experience in small business management.

Before You Blog Ask Yourself These Five Questions

  • Can I provide actionable information and insights that would be useful to small business?
  • Have I ever started, managed, researched and/or, been part of a small business or small business community?
  • Do I know what the most important word in business is today? (Add Comment)
  • Do I have the discipline and stamina to keep adding new insights and value each week or month?
  • Are my observations at events, conferences and meetings that I blog about accurate assessments of the trends and issues associated with them?

Your Score

    • Yes to 4 of Five and you know the answer to 3: Hall of Fame
    • Yes to 4 of Five: We love you.
    • Yes to 3 of Five: Amazing
    • Yes to 2 of Five: Great
    • Yes to 1 of Five: Goodbye
    • Yes to 0 of Five: Get some experience

My seminal quote for these social media times:

‘The power of the pen has never been greater and blogging is the game changer that separates the ok marketers from great ones.”

August 28, 2009 Front page USA Today Money Section: More marketers sign on to social media, they’re going where many of their customers hang out. Mobile Social Network Market to be $3.3 Billion by 2013

Key Article Statistics:

  • Facebook: 100,000 Websites use Facebook Connect (Great)
  • Facebook: 30 Million users access it through mobile devices (No brainer)
  • Twitter: Twitter users spend 66% more dollars on the Internet (like yah, what would u expect?)
  • LinkedIn: Assembled 365,000 company profiles (so what for?)
  • LinkedIn: 12 Million small businesses professionals are members (r these #s correct)
  • MySpace: 1 Million small businesses and individuals promote goods and services on the site (hum do I want to become part of a global bazaar?)

For me Facebook is my personal site, I don’t want to be sold to, I don’t want to be profiled and I don’t want my employees posting their fear and loathing about performance reviews on it. I don’t know about you, but Facebook is blurring the lines now between our personal and professional lives and to be honest I don’t like it. Even one of my best friends is now promoting his tanning salon on my wall, BAD. We already knew that mobile is king and that the digital natives are all over it and getting new forms of instant gratification every minute.  Twitter is a phenomenon that just keeps coming, but I am not going to tweet about every step of my vacation or that I have a head ache today. The real question is how do I really know that the person is being honest?

LinkedIn is the mystery site once thought of as the electronic rolodex it now faces an important evolutionary point in its journey. What is it? What is their business model going to look like in five years, and how will they make money? Every time I turn around I see different membership numbers and to be honest, do they have marketing? MySpace, well I was once a member but gave up on it to focus on Facebook, how many of these networks do I actually have time for? And for me at the half way point of my life time is precious.

Is There Trust and Honesty in a Social Media Universe?

There is no substitute for experience in this world, and experience builds character, depth and understanding. This is your personal wealth, no one can take it away from you and if you build your house on a rock there is no doubt. You know your friends and you know when they are not being truthful and misleading. How do you know that about your social network community and the so-called expert bloggers? The fact is that you don’t have enough time to even think about it, let alone doing the research to validate it. These are important considerations in a world where people put on an “act” as we used to call it in New England, and where many CEOs and others have falsified their backgrounds and even lied about their education. Everyone is enamored with the promise of social networks, but in the future how will these “trusted” networks provide you with actionable and accurate information in your business decision making process?  There would appear to be a great deal of trust existing in the networks today, however, the future is unknown and we do know that history does have a tendency to repeat itself. Positioning oneself as an expert is easier than ever today and sites like LinkedIn allow you to quickly view others backgrounds, but I would wager that LinkedIn has never done the due diligence to check the authenticity of their members. I really like LinkedIn and it is usually the first place I go before meeting with a new colleague or potential business partner.

There is no doubt that those with nefarious intentions and those with other intentions are already stalking their prey on these sites. Use your best judgment when consuming and using social network information in business decision making, because in this age of the Internet, instant gratification is here in a new form, social networking.

The Personality of Fish: The World’s Oceans and Fisheries in Crisis

Life Magazine December 3, 1971, (cost 50 cents) leading article, Crisis at sea: the threat of no more fish.

  • The common haddock is an endangered species
  • Less than 10% of Atlantic Herring remain
  • The last US whaling vessels are out of business
  • The yellowfin flounder fishery has been wiped out
  • The present catch rate dooms the tuna

The first sentences from this article, “The world is on its way to running out of fish. The endless riches of the sea that were supposed to mean salvation for the world’s multiplying population turn out to be far from endless.”

Outside of stopping whaling in every country except Japan, since 1971 we have done very little to build and maintain sustainable fisheries in this country. We enacted the Marine Mammal Protection act, which has worked, and the Magnuson-Stevens Fishery Conservation Act, which has been a dismal failure. New and innovative approaches to fisheries management need to evolve and we have to stop taking from the ocean without giving anything back. I grew up in Gloucester, Massachusetts, once the largest fishing port in the world for nearly 200 years, now its primary industry is tourism. I grew up with fisherman, my grandfather, uncles and cousins were all fisherman and their motto was always live for today. And a management system like the Magnuson-Stevens act, which is dominated by industry representatives, will only lead to more irreversible damage to fisheries populations.

Only 300 people from our planet have actually seen the earth from space, and I am sure that every one of them was overwhelmed by our blue oceans. A couple of months ago I saw that the lobster industry is now positioning themselves as a sustainable fishery. I can tell you that this is far from the reality, when I grew up you could make a living with 100-200 traps, now they fish up to 600 to get the same catch. And of course they don’t talk about how the offshore lobster industry was completely wiped out during the 1960s.

Next week I am off on vacation to Woods Hole, Nantucket and the islands and will return to where I studied and practiced marine biology twenty years ago. This will be my first “writing vacation” and I am really looking forward returning to my scientific roots and thinking about how we might innovate fisheries management so that our children and families will have fish in their future. The one thing that we have learned in the last 40 years is that whatever we have been doing in fisheries management it doesn’t work. Until next time I wish you great selling and marketing in the millennium.


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