Monday, February 22, 2010

Social Good is Also a Business- MC Hammer at e-week

These words, doing social good is also a business, music to my ears, came from MC Hammer at the eweek event "The Power of Social Technology". Unfortunately they came right at the end and I didn't get to ask him specifics. But still, having him say it at an entrepreneurship event was good. The panel of experts which included Robert Scoble and Loic Le Meur, shared tips and personal experiences around social media engagement. I was there to find out "why you don’t need money or power to ignite seismic (seesmic - get it?) social change." Well, I was far from convinced, but certainly a good time was had by all and nobody was sleeping - granted - it was lunch time and all around me were scarfing sandwiches. And, it was interesting to see in real time how, even as each panelist logged into their twitter stream, attendees sent messages. So:
- Social software never sleeps: the world is moving fast - its real time -so 24/7 engagement is important - solution is to get a partner in another time zone (not wear yourself to the bone). Loic said his company has no PR department - just 2-3 people managing social media engagement.
- Always try to add value - social media are great source of information: eg. if you are interested in a VC follow him/her on twitter; or follow those who follow them etc. - find out how you add value and pitch to the right people - network in person after getting informed
- Content is king- Don't get caught up in the tools- Before you engage find out what you are passionate about, develop a voice that is personal but also amenable to being a brand

GSB dean made some good points:
- Social media - fastest communication medium today
- increases need for traditional content (else nothing to tweet about)
- is not a substitute but a complement to current tools
- finding a vice on twitter et al is hard - balance your personal voice with the institutional voice

Bottom line - work hard and smart and social media is your ally in getting eyeballs - which can lead to heart and mind.


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