Friday, July 31, 2009

The Network

This is what really got me interested. Remember the whole six degrees of separation concept? I have no idea what it is now, but I will guess two degrees. Why is this important? If you send an email to five people (constituents / customers). That is not too big a deal, but what if that one person forwards the email to 100 other individuals and that one of those 100 forwards it to 100,000 others? Your email just reached 100,105 folks, ticked off several, and we generally call it spam. So an example using a social media tool, follows a similar path, amplified by hundreds, and is viewed as information- not spam.

I feel sure someone can give a much more concrete example than the one above. The point is communication moves fast. The best way I know to explain is with a real example.

Pre-CD plans a party (generally):
· Call or possible email, likely days or weeks in advance
· May include a link to a map
· Gets mad because X is not going to be there
· Human capitol investment likely several hours over days or weeks

Post-CD plans a party (generally):
· Text or use social media tool (usually connected, I will attempt to explain that later) to all friends, likely in seconds
· Friends check the location of the invite (yes they know where because of things like Latitude)
· Friends show up- no one notices who doesn’t
· Human capital investment seconds and possibly minutes

Here is the crazy thing: the party could be cancelled or moved just as fast and without anyone causing a fuss. So the scary part is you can end up with really big crowds at a single location in a relatively short amount of time. There is also an opportunity.

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About Me

Little Rock, Arkansas, United States