E13 Social Media Strategy – The Vanguard Approach
For those of you who have been associated with me for an extended period of time, (some for more than 20 years), you know that my online business strategy has gone through many subtle, but important changes.
It started in 1990 with my first online business known as the 13 Oaks Internet Development Center, and became Jericho Technology months later.
When Social Media was born, my first approach to helping entrepreneurs was the E3 Social Media Strategy. It then progressed to E7 last year and will now expand, (effective in beta April 25, 2011), to the E13 Social Media Strategy – The Vanguard Approach.
This is not a history lesson — but it is a study in change. Change is good.
One of the key lessons to be learned if you wish to be successful in online business, is that nothing remains the same for very long. It can’t. In fact, if you notice that your approaches to business have not changed for a while, you can rightly assume that you have fallen behind.
Bill Gates once referred to this phenomenon as Business at the Speed of Thought. In his book by the same name, published in 1999, he was recommending that businesses integrate their business functions with their IT functions. Think about it. That was only eleven years ago, and even that revolutionary idea seems passe by today’s standards.
In that same iconic book, Bill Gates and Steve Ballmer both referred to the Digital Nervous System. Ballmer described it this way:
“If you think of the human body, what does our nervous system let us do? It lets us hear, see, take input. It lets us think and analyze and plan. It lets us make decisions and communicate and take action. Every company essentially has a nervous system: Companies take inputs, they think, they plan, they communicate, they take action. The question is how does the nervous system in your company operate?
If you ponder Ballmer’s description for a moment, it is prescient. It sounds remarkably similar to today’s best definition of Social Media — an idea that did not even exist at the time.
Conditions change, technology improves, competition becomes more vigorous — even brutal — and perhaps most importantly, your wants and needs as a businessperson evolve, often dramatically.
For all of these reasons I have changed my approach once again.
E13 represents cutting-edge strategy, execution and management. Or, as I prefer to say: The vanguard approach.
The literal definition of vanguard is: “The foremost position in an army or fleet advancing into battle.” The word vanguard is apropos because business is a battle. It’s not a hobby — not a diversion — and not a sidelight. If you are reading this post it is because your online business has become an indispensable part of your life.
It is not what you do, it is who you are.
The core concepts around which the E13 Social Media Strategy is built.
The 13 “E’s” in order of importance are:
- Emotion, and
The E7 Social Media Strategy website language suggested that “it was essentially a very simple idea .” That was a regrettable omission. It was simple, but it wasn’t easy. The website continued, “It’s about knowing what to do, how to do it, and how to measure your results when you’re done.” That was true, but only half the story.
In E13 I have expanded this notion. A better description is this:
- The E13 Social Media Strategy is simple, but it isn’t easy.
- It recommends dealing with economic realities head-on, but suggests expanding your business and profits exponentially, when conditions dictate.
- It requires understanding your customer and empathizing with his needs and wants, ahead of your own.
- It presupposes that you either have solid Social Media expertise, or that you find it before you begin.
- It recommends that you discover an exclusive marketing niche, but if none currently exists that you create one.
- It suggests that you empower your customers’ businesses as you empower your own.
- It advises that you evaluate your current approaches, adapt as necessary, and that you make evaluation a part of your daily activity from then on.
- It reminds you that execution is all-important.
- It stresses the need for total engagement with all of your audiences.
- And finally, it reiterates the core notions of E7, that you practice effectiveness and efficiency, while amplifying your media messages with emotion and enthusiasm.
I have a favor to ask.
Will you please join me as I inaugurate this next step toward placing us all in the vanguard of Social Media? Will you please assist me in answering Steve Ballmer’s prophetic question for entrepreneurs everywhere: “… how does the nervous system in your company operate?”
The E13 Social Media Strategy is now fully active. You may view complete details by clicking here.
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