Interview: Employee amplification: Social strategy for austere times

What is the most intrinsic part of a successful sale? Human-to-human contact. Unless a person already knows exactly what they want, where to get it and what they are willing to pay, a successful sale is about human centricity. This represents quite a challenge in our current context, where social distancing and digital channels have usurped more traditional ways of touching base with customers. But even if those weren’t factors, the potential to reach substantially more people in a meaningful way is so much greater today – if you can pull it off. And according to Mike Saunders, CEO of Digitlab and author of the book Humancentric, this is possible through social media and employee amplification. “What I’m starting to see is that the people who are succeeding are the ones taking hold of their online networks and committing to them, as opposed to just relying on their brand pages to complete the social experience.” Merging social and employees Many managers and executives grow nervous when one mentions words such as ‘social media’ and ’employee’ in one sentence. Is social media not that world of frivolous distraction, fake news and filled with wrecks of brand promotions gone awry? “Social media has a dark side to it, that is true,” says Saunders. “But we shouldn’t allow these mistakes to distract us from the bigger picture. We should focus our questions on why social media, good or bad, is so successful? Why do people keep going back to it and using it? It’s...

Why Startups Need to be Humancentric

Entrepreneurs are people who don’t have a shortage of ideas. They’re constantly devising new ways to create value. The very nature of their “idea-driven” personality has become their most significant asset and the most substantial liability.  The trouble with being an ideas-driven person is that we don’t take the time to run those ideas through the gauntlet before testing them thoroughly. We move quickly to our other strength – taking the concept from zero to one.  Clive Butkow shared a list of the Top 20 Reasons Startups Fail, and I found it incredibly interesting to draw comparisons to my experiences as an entrepreneur.  No 1: No Market Need I’ve been down this road so often it’s scary. Launch day comes, and the sales plans are executed. We wait in anticipation and – nothing – or at least, not enough. Coupled with this, we start to see that number six on the list is becoming a reality. Our research said people would pay for the product, but not at the price we could produce the product.  The small starting market we had, found the price too high, and we cannot find the market to generate our sales through.  At this point, I want to suggest a more in-depth dive into your research than “who is my customer.” Best practice talks about market segmentation, consumer research and persona development. While these are all valuable, they are not the endpoint we need. The endpoint is a buying customer – so the question I ask is...

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