Why You Should Design Your Business Around Social

“The social version of anything is more engaging and will outperform non-social.”

That’s a direct quote from an interview with Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg at the 2010 Web 2.0 Summit.

He noted that we are all hard-wired to connect and engage with other people.

This followed his comment that “Over the next 5 years most industries are going to get redesigned around people.”

At this year’s Web 2.0 Summit, Facebook’s Chief Technology Officer Bret Taylor carried the torch and gave some additional insights into the future of social.

“In a few years from now, nearly every single person at Facebook will be working exclusively on mobile.”

These are all profound statements that merit your attention as business owners and managers.

Social is Serendipity

Bret Taylor went on to elaborate something that we all know.

Social is not a layer that you add to your business marketing. It has to be baked in.

He said, “Social means serendipity – it means seeing what your friends are doing in context.”

Serendipity is not a word that most small business people use. However, they do understand context, and its significance for being findable online.

Context is connecting the dots to gain new business from successful client relationships.

What is context for most local businesses?

Social is Closeness

Our social connections are the close friends with whom we grew up, went to college, or now have an ongoing business relationship.

Context is closeness. How close you are to someone determines the depth of your relationship – and how much you will share.

What is it that you most often hear from marketing pundits? Get close to your customers.

What does that mean for your business?

You got it – go all in on mobile.

What matters most to people is what is here and now. This is why local businesses have an advantage moving forward if they capitalize on their location.

Social is Relationships

Mark Zuckerberg made an interesting comment with regards to relationships – that there is a cost-benefit to every relationship.

If your relationship is small, the investment and associated cost for maintaining it is small. Think of this as your followers on Twitter.

Your big relationships are your customers. They are investing in you – which means you have to invest in them.

Businesses have traditionally recognized this, but now they have to translate that to a business environment that is becoming profoundly social.

Are you giving your customers a platform with which to be heard – such as a blog?

If not, are you actively monitoring your brand on the major social networks – and responding in kind?

These are just a couple examples of what it means to design your business (and your business model) around social.

How do you plan to design your business around social?

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Until next week,  Jeff