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Posts Tagged ‘social media

The unifying theory of communications: Sustain us

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unifying theoryWhen less is simply less 

Look at Earth, hanging in space, alone in darkness. After you’re done admiring the beauty of what you see, you can’t help but think, on some level:

Will we be able to sustain such a hurtling jewel?

What if we looked at communications in that context?

Sometimes communications are used in less-than-best practice.

Infographics are great. They convey information quickly. They’re on everybody’s lips.

But infographics can mislead. When infographics are over-tasked with carrying the thrust of a message alone, they fail.

Communications is about integration: a unification of channels. It’s about sustaining brilliance, about sustaining best practice.

Shaping a story

Some creatives can do graphics with great impact and shape a great story. It depends on the strategy behind the message. Infographics are brilliant tools, but success is in how infographics are used.

Words have built empires. There is no escaping our need for information. As we move into any subject, we want deeper information.

We live in a world where our communications race forward into space. Connectivity. Speed. Data blasting forward. It’s all tough to process.

Infographics are everywhere. They provide snapshots of almost anything you can imagine. Done well, they are useful, but …

How deep are some really?

The shallow end: Don’t use audiences when using data

Go out and search. You will doubtless find an infographic on what you’re looking for. Now, look for the source.

Where did the information come from?

Some infographics don’t reference where the research for the data comes from. They tell a story, but if the story’s fiction, consider its value.

Organizations have objectives. If data and infographics are used to mislead, you risk credibility.

In our race to process information, to relay information, to demonstrate concepts to people more easily, more accessibly, without demanding too much of the beleaguered audience or public, we sometimes forget to look into where the research for the data comes from.

Who did the research? If we don’t know … Are we setting up our audience, and so, ourselves for disappointment?

In these days of content curation, we still have to be conscious of where data comes from, and its interpretation. That can be difficult. Speed is of the essence.

Even the research process itself has come under repeated analysis. There have been a number of papers criticizing peer review. Often, the conclusion is, peer review may be imperfect, but it’s still the best thing we’ve got.

Questions, questions: Ask some questions

At the very least, we should ask questions about what research seems to demonstrate. We live in a time of rapid change.

Since Einstein, and beyond, we’ve learned that things are relative. We may like slow cooking, but we still have priorities related to “getting things done”. In a historical context, Einstein did pretty well without all the technology we have at our disposal today.

Take research on phones. As one of the largest manufacturers of phones used to advise us: Think different. A recent study suggested a few things about different phone manufacturers. One idea was that the wealthy / intelligent buy a certain model of phone.

What’s being suggested here? That the phone makes you wealthy or intelligent?

Let’s ask some questions: What types of phones are we talking about? Does one brand sell a greater variety of phones across a broader spectrum within a broader price range? (For example, if wealth determines intelligence, then obviously Warren Buffett and Bill Gates are smarter than Steve Jobs was.)

Which company focuses on the high-end? If a product costs more, it doesn’t take Einstein to figure out that the wealthy might buy that product.

Sheep or deep?

Questions can start to reveal bias or data manipulation. There’s a difference between interpretation and distortion of data. Insights have to be as deep as the data.

None of us are perfect, but If we use data with less-than-best-practice, doesn’t it reflect our opinion of our target audience? Our publics?

Is there an element of danger in such a strategy? How do people feel when there’s a massive pullback in a company’s stock? When IPOs and exchanges are held up as parlayers of bad practice?

Researching media reports after such errors in judgement – more often labelled as “debacles” in the media – provide clear evidence. No management team wants to see its name lit up in a reputational example of bad practice.

Need more evidence? Take a look at questions asked about the U.S. government’s reputation following the Merkel phone-tapping.

The complications involved in communicating, and various organizational debacles, are bound to affect brand and reputation. Do consumers want to know we’re burying poor references to our brands in cyberspace, or, that:

  • We’re addressing issues from stakeholders
  • Opening a channel of dialogue
  • Working hard to improve our organizations

and,

  • Willing to listen to feedback that provides insight?

Daniel Libeskind and David Chipperfield discuss why architecture is collaborative and is a form of communication. Any new building is bound to cause controversy like any great new idea. The discussion is the thing.

Flip the agenda on its head

Some believe that in a world where our communications burn across media at a faster and faster pace, the potential for backlash is vastly accelerated. But isn’t it important to consider that people are also getting more discerning? Aren’t people looking for something to believe in?

Aren’t we building a form of architecture when we reach out to talk to publics and audiences? Aren’t we better off building a foundation that lasts?

Isn’t there opportunity here? And if you’re not involved in the discussion, not seated at the table, digitally, with your publics, then, who is?

If you’re not dealing with stakeholders’ trust issues, then who is?

Won’t integrity stand out?

Peter Lynch and Warren Buffett have been cited for discussing how a company’s focus on how to spend its money (read: not spending outlandish amounts on offices, furniture, etc.) shows a competitive edge in these companies, especially for the shareholder. Does this frugality on the part of management mean that the managements of these companies aren’t intelligent?

Warren Buffett still lives in a modest house. Is he less intelligent for doing this?

Meanwhile, some companies spend a great deal on their employees including training and R&D to help stimulate creativity, engagement and innovation.

Is there more than one way to get to an outcome? In fact, is the construction of outcomes liquid? In constant flux?

A river flows out to the sea, but the way the water gets to the sea is epic. It’s a story of flow, of perpetual change. It’s the story of nature’s architecture.

A discerning audience is able to deconstruct what it sees. New York has taken steps to protect consumers from fake reviews. Is it really sound to imagine that there are no customers that have ever considered that these kinds of bad practices are going on?

Smart competitors will create smart campaigns centred around companies’ branding. Clever advertising is full of examples of a brand’s position being reframed – even if you’re reframing the idea that consumers of that brand are “creative”.

If an infographic misleads, does it take your audience where you want to go ultimately?

Information in infographics absent best practice, can mislead. What can it do to a brand?

Data can be used in a self-perpetuating, self-aggrandizing way to rationalize, what? That a product makes us look smarter? Makes us superior to others because we spend more on it?

Publics are going to change as fast as the media that bombard them. Appealing to customers will be an act of ultimate creativity. Some will do it brilliantly. Others are going to be remembered for compromising their ethics.

Customers, more than ever, want organizations that walk the talk.

Even if an organization mounts a comeback related to a major stumble, followed by negative media coverage, wouldn’t it have been better to follow a sustainable path of best practice in the first place? Wouldn’t it have been better not to suffer the reputational damage – to have more consistent growth?

Isn’t this why business schools hold ethics classes? Why reputation and trust factor large in polls? Why the Warren Buffetts of the world focus on the long-term rather than the short-term?

Are we telling stakeholders that all of this is mere lip service? Do we want to build our communications architecture like a house of cards?

Consider smartphone advertising, public relations and marketing. Just this sector is full of (depending on your opinion and metrics) winners, winners who became losers, organizational wrestling with public perception of privacy issues, the rapid pace of technological change, intense competition, shrinking margins, hype, hubris and successes that are hard to maintain.

Looking for a bullet-proof suit? It exists in best practice. The structure that sustains is the structure than can be built on.

Privacy, hacktivists and change giving birth to change

What of privacy? How much are people willing to give away? With social media, many of us are more visible, willingly, but there’s still constant debate about what amount of social media exposure is healthy. We do that regarding television, and electronics generally, too.

Hacktivists seem to be playing a major role in our public perception of networks, our personal, societal and corporate treatment of information.

Doubtless, security plays in the minds of our publics even as they increasingly give more of their information away. Security issues could impact dramatically on collaboration and information exchange, but innovation depends on such exchange.

Multiple security issues can change perception about services. New perceptions create new realities.

Many in the media and related professions and organizations are trying to appeal to their audiences. We could go on and on asking questions: The pace of change is making us move from what we are, are becoming and will be. It’s a never-ending cycle of change.

Change begets change.

Audiences and publics are undergoing ferocious transformation, and they will undergo all manner of metamorphoses as they absorb their new universes.

The portals are everywhere

In our hands. In our pockets. On our desks.

Portals. Everywhere.

Our world has become worlds. Some of us are spending as much time in virtual worlds as in real ones. Since the advent of screens and all their permutations, we’ve gained new devices offering  portable portals.

Some won’t care. Others will constantly jump on the “new”, but the reality is, sustainability of anything, idea, product, service, depends on growth. But what kind of growth?

Integration and ethics: The song that remains, sustains

Infographics work best in an integrated communications plan. They are a great tool when used wisely. Today, the way you reach out has to have a long-term focus. There may be short-term tactics, but they have to rationalize with a long-term vision. Content is everywhere, so, creators of content need to work together to move mountains.

Eventually, you have to bring people somewhere where they access deep, meaningful research or information. While short pieces are the rage for grabbing views, leading audiences to deep information increases credibility. That, in itself, is the message.

Fluff eventually blows away. Substance is permanent. A well-built foundation upholds a structure.

Unethical manipulation of public trust, of audiences, can only end badly. Look at the U.S. and world stock markets as an example. It’s only this year that retail investors have come back.  If people hold great and enduring mistrust against the stock markets, what will the impact be on innovation, societal development and wealth creation?

The great thing about asking questions is it can help you formulate long-term strategy. In a world where you want to be aware of weaknesses and threats against your organization, your society on a small and large scale, you have to focus on ways to create opportunity that resonate for the long-term. (This should be in our DNA. It’s the double helix of a virtual spiral.)

We’ve all heard pop songs that are one-hit wonders, but there are some songs that sustain us, and in turn, we sustain them.  Quality endures. We make sure of it.

In a world of change, where there are so many one-hit wonders, songs that remain sustain.

Image source: Flickr/Ted Kendell

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N.B.: When it comes to integrated communications, here are three excellent key messages:

canada digital in sync

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Statistics on companies’ and nonprofits’ use of public relations resources and budgets [Study]

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microphoneA recent study on how much corporations and nonprofits spend on public relations staff, press release services, outside public relations firms, digital and print-related public relations and other areas of public relations shed some light on practices within the industry.

Amongst the highlights in the report:

Some results weren’t surprising including those showing that publishing and media companies dominated the issuing of news releases.

  • Publishing and media companies issued the most press releases, 150 on average, while finance and business services companies issued the fewest, a mean of 29.4
  • Companies spent a mean of $53,404 on outside news release services, including email and print distribution, database and list provision service and editorial help, in 2012-13 thus far

Two companies dominated news release services:

  • 45 per cent of companies in the sample have used BusinessWire for  news release services
  • 44 per cent of organizations with annual revenue between $50 million and $250 million have used PR Web

While it may not be a surprise that all of the healthcare-related companies and 75 per cent of the manufacturers sampled had a separate public relations budget, it may surprise some that:

  • 57 per cent of nonprofit companies have a separate public relations budget
  • 40 per cent of the manufacturers and 36 per cent of the nonprofits in the sample use Vimeo in their public relations efforts

Social media continues to make strides into PR departments, with:

  • 35 per cent of company PR departments tweeting multiple times per day
  • 41 per cent of organizations considered the use of LinkedIn as critical to their public relations efforts

Conferences and conference appearances absorbed:

  • A mean of 14 per cent of their staff

Scale, as one might think, considering larger organizations ability to integrate more channels, means more use of video and webcasts:

  • 83 per cent of companies with over $2 billion in revenue in the sample maintain one or more repositories or databases of video, podcasts and/or webcasts about the company’s products that can be used for marketing and public relations purposes

In financial and business services, companies spent:

  • A mean of $47,500 on public relations firms and consultants in the past year

If you’re interested in more information related to the study, contact Primary Research Group.

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Written by johnrondina

June 4, 2013 at 7:00 pm

The galactic magical mystery tour

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Near-Earth Object

Coming soon through a portal in space near you

The tweeters guide to the galaxy (and beyond)

Every key message is a ride through a solar system. Every message is a galactic magical mystery tour. Every message is you.

Whether you are government, nonprofit, corporate, small business or just an individual, you can reach a digital world you couldn’t before.

The message

Messages leave their creators. They reach inside and outside of time and space. Messages create cosmologies.

Messages leave this plane and come back to it. They have huge orbits.

Some will collide with other bodies and become titanic. Others will fizzle and burn out on re-entry. Some will be lost in the cosmos.

Tools that convey messages are now more virtual than concrete. These tools are part of something bigger. Call it SocialMind.

Messages. They soar across space and time and land with great impact. They are digital comets and meteors. Asteroids.

What do they carry? What do they convey?

By surpassing writing, we have regained our wholeness, not on a national or cultural but cosmic plane.

— Marshall McLuhan

Near Earth Messages (NEMs)

Research has shown that water may have been brought to Earth by asteroids.

Asteroids may have played their part in creating us. The dinosaurs may have been destroyed by something hurtling toward and then impacting with Earth, but the ancestor(s) of that Near Earth Object (NEO) that came screaming toward Earth may have also created the dinosaurs. NEOs may have first brought life to Earth.

Our messages now hurl around us. The hope is that they land with impact. That they create something great.

Metaphors: How we tell our stories

There will always be stories to tell

Imagine you couldnetmulti see tweets blasting around.  Imagine they had tails like comets. While the tails of comets are created by melting ice, imagine that the tails of tweets are the lifetimes of messages.

Some tales are bigger than others. Some tales are mothers.

Many writers and speakers in the personal development field talk about why your targets should be big. Why not?

Shoot high. Shoot for the stars. Message the multiverse.

There will always be enough criticism around to pull you down. But some of this criticism will help you improve. That’s why we call it constructive. There’s a valuable place for contrarian thinking. Brain trusts are built on the strength of voices in collaboration.

We won’t always agree, but we will get to a solution, and that solution will be better for the analysis that gave birth to it.

Imagine tweets as the creation of new cosmologies. Mothers that give birth. New worlds. Worlds within worlds. Ideas. Stories.

Going far out …

We want to go far out. Humankind crawled up onto the sands of some primordial beach in a time before mechanical clock faces. The only mechanism for measuring time was the sun. We crawled forward and transformed into cave-dwellers, hunter-gatherers. Inevitably, we pushed.

Antonioni, the great filmmaker, called “cinema’s preeminent poet of the modern age” said he looked toward a highly industrial landscape and saw something human there. While human activity can sometimes leave us in despair, Antonioni saw, within industry, hope.*

The multiverse becomes a hive of industry

2 [mass noun] hard work:the kitchen became a hive of industry

— Oxford dictionary

Hope. While we struggle to achieve whatever we’re destined to become in the next hundred years, in the next thousand, what is absolutely undeniable, is that our ideas are circulating at the speed of light all around us at this moment.

And the next. And the next. And the next.

It’s not just in the next hundred years — it may be in the next hundred minutes. Or seconds.

Every second, 750 tweets hurtle by. Sixty-five million total tweets a day. What do they contain?

Some will criticize, especially what they deem as the more insipid tweets, but, isn’t that like saying books have no value because the medium was corrupted by a poor writer? Some will say tweets are affecting our psychology, dumbing us down with endless “top” lists, etc., but isn’t that absolving us of responsibility?

For every criticized use, for every negative effect, isn’t it up to us as human creators to discover a way to use a medium to benefit, to increase knowledge, to inspire?

Imagine an alien intelligence, light years beyond our technology. If such an intelligence looked at the messaging of this world, now, what would it think?

Would it marvel at the infancy of the creation of the digital technologies we are now beginning to harness, to understand and to use? Would it wonder at what we are bound to become?

For such an intelligence, would we hang in space like the totemic baby in 2001?

If the medium is the message, is the message still not the message, too?

The birthmark of an idea

Astronomical bodies crash together sometimes increasing their size. The medium doesn’t remove the impact.  The media increase the creative explosion that creates a lasting crater. The creative explosion is the birthmark of an idea so powerful that it can’t be contained.

… Coming back to Earth

Integrated messages create one hell of an impact crater.

And then life is born in the minds of many human beings. Ideas go like lifeforms into the minds of many people, they influence and then they change.

How will those people alter those messages? Will they create something new?

Some of these ideas will even be used to criticize social media.

Our understanding of messages, especially in the digital context, and the new social vehicles that carry the messages, and the next vehicles that will carry messages, is in its infancy.

We’re learning to listen, and we’re learning to talk. We’re growing up really fast.

What are we saying?

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The social multiverse at work?

A friend of mine sent me the following, startled at how similar the beginning of it was to my pieces on the social multiverse. Interesting …

How Twitter Is Reshaping The Future Of Storytelling http://www.fastcoexist.com

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*Red Desert [Criterion Collection] interview with Antonioni conducted by Jean-Luc Godard

Written by johnrondina

April 30, 2013 at 7:13 pm

The impact of social media on investor relations

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netmultiHow has social media affected the communications world with respect to investor relations?

Disclosure and necessary tools

Have a look at a graphic representing tweets launched into the communications stratosphere. Visualize the potential impact of social technologies.

Can investor relations (IR) exist today without taking advantage of what digital has to offer?

Recently, the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) in the U.S. has decided that social media is a necessary tool when it comes to disclosing key information. Companies can use social media, but they need to tell investors where they can find key information about operations.

As we begin to use these tools more, as a generation grows up used to them, and they evolve, the impact of social media becomes increasingly apparent:

Social media, like any nascent technology, will have its successes and failures, but criticism sometimes misses the evolution in communication:
Speed.

Social tools are quickly establishing their relevance. Studies continue to show and to project the impact on business of transformative collaborative tools. And now the SEC has acknowledged that they hold relevance for investor relations.

(Two interesting visualizations of tweets.)

“Perfectly suitable” but not if access is restricted

Critics of the SEC were calling the regulatory body a dinosaur struggling to keep up with changes in the playbook of communications. George Canellos, acting director of enforcement at the SEC, said regarding the policy change: “Most social media are perfectly suitable methods for communicating with investors, but not if the access is restricted or if investors don’t know that’s where they need to turn to get the latest news …”

Of course, there are different kinds of investors, and not all investors have the same access to information. Organizations like FAIR Canada are working hard with multiple stakeholders, including regulatory bodies, to advocate for and help assure a level playing field for all investors.

The stakeholder is the message

Companies need to share information with stakeholders. Stakeholders are increasingly flexible, technologically-savvy, and as anyone who’s done research on digital technologies or social media can tell you, they want information the way they want it, when they want it, and, often, as fast as possible.

The stakeholder is the message. And the future is about listening and interacting. But is this true of stakeholders in all their incarnations? Will less social-savvy investors be at a disadvantage?

Most large companies are already actively listening to social chatter. How will the smaller investor cope?

Listening to the voice of the multiverse

Listening, monitoring messages in the digital multiverse is, and will become, increasingly important. It’s social media’s incredible speed and accessibility that makes it an important channel of information on a company or issue. You only need to focus on Royal Bank’s recent experience with outsourcing, and the resulting firestorm, to see that this is true.

Monitoring for issues related to IR is crucial.

Multiportal conversation

One of the cornerstones of communications is that an organization deserves to tell its story, but now that communications has tools like social media, it’s important to remember that public relations is a conversation. It is dialogue.

  • Conversation is now multiportal
  • Conversation resembles multiple “worlds”:
  1. Information is accumulated, digested and shared very quickly
  • Information can be accessed by almost any individual or organization in near real-time, and then sent out to more new “worlds”, where:
  1. The process might repeat again and again, exponentially

If you’re not part of a two-way conversation, then, what does this say about your organization?

Questions, questions, questions

Can less social media-savvy investors cope? Do they want to cope in this environment?

Then again, did storytellers want to cope with the printing press?

How does social affect reputation or risk mitigation for companies? Do stakeholders perceive you as having the ability to respond in a crisis? To listen? What does it say about your thought leadership? About advancing your organization, and advancing its most important resource, its people, within your sector?

You can find social media users amongst investors, both institutional and retail, customers, and analysts, but how level is the playing field when it comes to those who are less social-savvy?

The conversation over social disclosure is going on whether companies or other stakeholders take part or not. Not only is it multiportal — it’s multidirectional.

At the time of writing, a case of tweet-hacking set the whole conversation on its ear. The Associated Press (AP) was hacked, a fake tweet was sent out saying there had been explosions at the White House resulting in $136 billion evaporating from the stock market although the market bounced back after the tweet was discovered to be a fraud.

Speed is both advantage and disadvantage when it comes to social. The AP event guarantees an ongoing discussion on the use of social media and reinforces regulators’ philosophy of using social technologies as part of the integrated flow of communications.

The AP Twitter hacking will draw increasing attention to issues of security. But Bring Your Own Device (BYOD) and news wire services, as well as emails, can, and have been hacked, too.

It’s clear we’ve entered into a brave new world of digital communications where the speed of our technologies will accelerate the speed of the debate on our technologies.

Inherit the feedback

Social channels provide an interesting arena for obtaining feedback. Some feel it’s the best feedback money can buy: direct customer feedback from specific and broad stakeholder groups. And it’s cost-effective. 

In the Royal Bank case, information about what was happening was posted via social media. But the creators of the Facebook page weren’t random individuals, or even disgruntled customers. They were employees, part of a key stakeholder group.

Information is power. But increasingly, information is becoming an exponent of conversations. Debate is a necessary tool. It’s how we advance.

Yet the lightning strike of the AP event, and its resulting effect on the markets, can’t be ignored.

Justin Fox, in a recent Harvard post, said: “… history, data-crunching, and informed opinion — (it’s) intended to be consumed and debated by an audience … far beyond (insert your academic [or other] stakeholders here) …”

Restricting communication, access to information and people networks is something I doubt you would champion as a sound business practice for the 21st century … You can resist, but your competitors and customers are moving ahead.

— Mike Langford

Investor relations might not be able to shrink from social channels even if it wanted to. Some critics will say IR should embrace social channels. It’s true that adding social media to an IR website opens new avenues for disclosure and transparency. While it’s important to have contingency plans for crises and miscommunication or poor communication, that’s true of all channels in public relations.

Social conversations and what it is to be “informed”

Shrinking away from social conversations, from the debate about what’s right regarding the future, on any issue, from dialoguing about what it is to be “informed” and how to actively listen in an increasingly digital world, might lessen the ability to formulate a sound strategy for the future. Today, it’s hard to imagine that social media won’t be involved in the future of IR.

The debate is sure to be an interesting one, and like the technology itself might be ever-evolving.

Companies worry about litigation, media flare-ups and reputational damage. But shrinking away from social lessens your ability to compete as a thought leader. Thought leadership is the evolution of conversations.

Thought leadership helps set the agenda for debate for future practice. If you’re not part of the debate, then it’s hard to claim leadership.

Has anyone ever really created a sound strategy for the future by avoiding societal debates? By avoiding internal organizational opinions?

While companies worry about disgruntled employees or consumers doing damage to corporate reputations through social media, the Royal Bank situation proved that anyone can set up a Facebook page presenting their “voice”. This isn’t new. Websites have existed for awhile.

The only thing that’s changed is the medium for the message. And the speed media can be set up at.

One thing social definitely can do is empower individuals by giving them platforms that are fast and accessible, platforms they may not have had previously, platforms with reach.

What about the advantages social media may have for IR? Best practices suggest there should be a social media policy in place at every organization to clarify things.

Many organizations are leveraging the collaborative advantages of social to learn what they already know. Organizations are enabling themselves to share information more broadly within their structures.

Because what you know may not be what I know, even though we work a cubicle away from one another.

Fear of technology, and its impact on stakeholders

Is an organization that’s shrinking away from the newest and fastest channels of communication an organization that’s going to look like it has something to fear? Fear of a social planet: What does that say to your stakeholders?

Engagement, sales, customer service, feedback — the processes that social media impacts are many. None of this is static, the processes are evolving. It’s important to remember this.

The direction an organization takes regarding social disclosure says a lot about the confidence the organization has in itself, in its people, and ultimately, in its business model.

How forward-thinking do organizations embracing social media look compared to their peers who aren’t using social tools?

It’s normal that such a disruptive process gathers attention. Critics serve a valuable function in helping to refine the steps that are creating our future. Critics focus on transparency and more level playing fields.

“An integral part of the distribution platform”

Business Wire chairwoman and CEO, Cathy Baron Tamraz, recently said:

Protecting our clients’ sensitive information is at the core of what we do, and we’ll continue to do that in the most secure and innovative way possible … Social media can be a valuable part of the investor relations ecosystem, but it should not be the core. Social media has been an integral part of our distribution platform for many years … However, we are wary of unintended consequences by limiting access to a single site that doesn’t have the security, reliability, or interface to reliably serve the entire investment community.

Best practices do indeed mean you should use all the communications channels you can flow responsibly.

Social disclosure is at a very interesting point in its brief history. How will regulatory bodies in Canada respond in light of the SEC’s decision especially with respect to future policy?

By its very nature, social media can create tremendous conversation and debate. Through its incredible speed and accessibility, it can help put ideas forward on its use with respect to disclosure. In effect, social technologies can help promote or criticize social media as tools of disclosure.

The Ontario Securities Commission (OSC) provided the following as the current best practice approach:

  • If management of a reporting issuer becomes aware of a material change or a material fact, they should disclose it in a news release (through a widely circulated news or wire service) before posting the information on the issuer’s Twitter account, Facebook page or website
  • In any social media post, include a link to the news release or other disclosure document containing the detailed disclosure
  • Reporting issuers should establish policies on the use of Facebook, Twitter and other social media (see the guidance on corporate disclosure policies, quiet periods, electronic communications and rumours in sections 6.2, 6.9, 6.11, 6.12 and 6.13 of National Policy 51-201)
  • The issuer’s policies should address what disclosure can be made in a Facebook or Twitter post and who is authorized to make those posts and what pre-clearance they need.

 You can find OSC policy on what is “generally disclosed” here.

What do you think regarding the current and future impact of social media on IR?

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Written by johnrondina

April 25, 2013 at 7:00 pm

Creators, travelling at the speed of light

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optoCommunications continue to hurtle forward.

At least, we’ve developed the capability to send data at 99.7% the speed of light, flying through previous speed and latency records.

In Digital at the speed of light: Who’s afraid of social media?, Social Media: A universe expanding at an incredible rate, and Social cosmology: Social media is creating its own multiverse, I blogged about how social is propelling us into the future. Social media, like any nascent technology, will have its successes and failures, but criticism sometimes misses the evolution in communication:

Speed.

It’s one big thing (there are others) that’s changed profoundly since the creation of the printing press.

Some criticize speed and new technologies. It’s good to consider where we’re going.

Will technology ever create us?

The way we live has always been impacted by disruptive technologies. Criticism of disruptive technologies is valid in that the pace of technological change is rampant and accelerating so fast that it’s almost impossible to know which tools will dominate in the long-term.

The long-term, the future, becomes the present. Social tools have already had tremendous impact. The future becomes the present faster and faster.

Some platforms will last and evolve even as they stake their claim for superiority, usefulness and usability. Criticizing technological change in communications is like criticizing the printing press. Necessary, but if we could jump hundreds of years into the future, the point might be moot.

The printing press was revolutionary. We know that. Every time I read a book, some kind of unconscious thanks travels from me to the ghost of Gutenburg and the ghosts of the Renaissance.

And men go about to wonder at the heights of the mountains, and the mighty waves of the sea, and the wide sweep of rivers, and the circuit of the ocean, and the revolution of the stars, but themselves they consider not.

— Petrarch

Will a David ever sculpt itself?

We know what the printing press enabled. Tools aren’t what we are as creators. Tools are what enable us to realize our ideas. But the ideas are ours. Michelangelo may have said that his sculptures were imprisoned in marble, but the hammer didn’t pick itself up and begin to do the David on its own.

The printing press was revolutionary. The exchange of information it enabled, equally revolutionary. Education, for the literate, was changed forever. Literacy continues to be of prime importance today. Literacy separated what people could achieve. Often, it still does.

Tools aren’t what we are as creators. Despite how much we sometimes grow to love them. We are still the creators of  ideas and content. Even if we are conduits, as some describe the experience of creation, even if the sculpture is there, imprisoned in marble, we, like Michelangelo, hold and guide the tools. We wield the tools and they enable us to work in different media, in different contexts.

We are the creators. Tools are an extension of us.

Like a paintbrush. Like a hammer. Like a keyboard.

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Written by johnrondina

March 28, 2013 at 4:05 pm

Canadians creating their Twitter and LinkedIn cosmologies

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blaho

Is social media growing in Canada?

For Canadians, it’s often easier to get information on the digital landscape through our neighbour to the south (for obivous reasons). But what of digital Canada?

In Social Cosmology: Social media is creating its own multiverse, I blogged about the potential for social media as it accelerates into the future. You’ll find some interesting Twitter stats. In SocRev: The social revolution and its potential to revolutionize the corporation, I referenced similar statistics on LinkedIn.

Digital Canada

comScore just did a report on the Canadian digital space (or is that “Canadian digital space?”).

In Canada, with respect to unique visitors:

  • Twitter grew 27 per cent
  • LinkedIn grew 38 per cent

comscore slide
 

While Facebook’s growth has slowed, Twitter and LinkedIn are two growing portals in social media defining their positions in the social media multiverse. Twitter and LinkedIn have been growing at a rapid pace in Canada (and abroad), and they continued that trend in 2012.

Pinterest (especially) and Tumblr grew faster, but will they have the longevity Twitter and LinkedIn promise?

RBC did a study reporting that use of social media amongst small businesses is almost as popular as websites. *

Some say there’s no place for social media …

Have they been speaking to Canadians?

Find the report here.

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The social multiverse at work?

A friend of mine sent me the following, startled at how similar the beginning of it was to my pieces on the social multiverse. Interesting …

How Twitter Is Reshaping The Future Of Storytelling http://www.fastcoexist.com

* eMarketer.com

Written by johnrondina

March 6, 2013 at 12:13 pm

Social cosmology: Social media is creating its own multiverse

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Social media is creating its own universe.

blahoIf you really think about what’s happening, the social media/enterprise media sphere is crashing into other worlds:

Social media is creating a communications multiverse.

Fear is pervasive regarding social technologies and the empowerment it offers consumers, but companies that are dragging their collective worries, in effect, tying themselves to the gravity of a black hole of fear — should look to thought leaders.

100 of the biggest that do not live in solitude

When it comes to the Fortune 100, social media is alive and well and becoming a multiverse. The 100 were mentioned 10.4 million times in one month.

As the social media universe expands, Twitter has gone from:

  • 50 million tweets per day in 2010, to
  • +140 million tweets per day in 2011, to
  • 340 million tweets per day in March 2012

Looks like Twitter is alive and well and only beginning to explore where it can go.

  • More than 1 billion tweets are sent every three days

Imagine the intellectual capital of that … (For more stats on Twitter, see the below infographic.)

Tools are neither bad nor good

Upon invention, was the printing press bad or good? I recently had the opportunity to look at an old press. It sat there like an objet d’art — a tool that could be loved for what it could facilitate: communication.

SocialMind: Everywhere, further, faster

Some tweets aren’t what you or I may deem important. But some will contain the germ of creativity that will thrust us forward. Ideas. Concepts. High-quality information.

Consider how new Twitter still is and then use your ability to see into the future, to focus on worlds within worlds, on universes merging and acquiring information from each other, sharing and pushing the capabilities of SocialMind deeper and further, exploding the capacity of what information-sharing can bethink.  Think potential.

And there will be more tools.

What the social multiverse will become lives only in the imagination. Perhaps it hasn’t even been imagined yet:

  • 87 per cent of companies are using at least one social media platform
  • 82 per cent of global companies are using Twitter

The average number of Twitter accounts each corporate account is following increased 182% since 2010. Companies that fear the reputational damage that social technologies can create are listening to what the social multiverse is saying.

Thought leaders aren’t shrinking away from social media: They’re embracing it

Why? Because they understand the awesome power of the social multiverse.

  • Each corporate YouTube channel averages 2.02 million views
  • 79 per cent of corporate accounts engage on Twitter
  • Corporate accounts on Twitter and Facebook average more than 10 accounts on each

Companies in Europe are using accounts in mulitple languages to reach out, to inform, to embrace. Europe, by its geopolitical and multilingual construction, already knows there are multiple worlds.

Lead or resign yourself to being a follower

Raising awareness and increasing brand equity is increasingly hard to do — especially if you’re not using the channels that 100 of the greatest companies in the world are using. And if you’re not using these channels:

What does that say about your organization, and, what will your customers think of you?

Will they see you as a thought leader?

Or a follower …

We’re not talking about posting random nonsense in the social media multiverse. We’re talking about sharing and distributing high-quality content. We’re talking about communicating, about reaching out like light particles that travel boldly at break-neck speed.

These particles of light carry messages. When it comes to the quality of messages, the rest is up to us.

Reach your customer, share your intellectual capital in a way that only lived in the realm of science fiction a short while ago.

Fear of social channels will do what fear does. It will distract our attention with end-of-the-world scenarios (think Mayan calendar), but those who know the future has been changed forever are already going social.

Twitter is the most popular social media platform in Latin American. Its user growth tripled in China from Q1 to Q2, 2012 (35.5 million). This isn’t a strictly developed world phenomenon. This is a universe.

A multiverse.

Multiple possible universes, a click, a tap or a keyboard shortcut away

Multiple possible universes of information and of information-sharing, including the history of everything we’ve created, everything we know and have done … Could such tools be coming to a future near you? Twitter’s planning a massive archive available to each user.

Channels. Channels that will reach out into everything that exists and will exist. That’s the potential of social media.

If creation is cosmology, then we will create new cosmologies, new universes.

It’s coming.

When Da Vinci set down his brilliance in his notebooks, did he know that his work would live today? Did he know it would be digital? Did he know he’d be touching the face of an audience …

  • that could send short messages at the speed of light?
  • that could attach all kinds of intellectual property or images and share them in seconds?

Channels and social Galileos: Leaving behind the flat Earth

Channels can be used in mulitple ways. They are tools. What we will develop, share and disrupt with those channels will be a flat Earth that will give way to digital  Galileos finding celestial bodies, spheres. Twitter is simply one example.

Social Galileos will project their ideas and their creativity into the multiverse. Social Galileos will peer into holes in space and find new worlds. We’re already busy compiling archives of tweets that have gone before.

And we’re just peering through the portal.

Feeling gravity’s pull into the great beyond

That is the promise of these technologies: that they will bring the brilliance of our collective imagination to multiple thresholds and portals and push through like light pulled by the gravity of a black hole, bending, but finding spaces to create new worlds.

Because … we are human and we aspire toward and beyond the stars. Because … we want new worlds.

Because the next bold steps for humankind will be in the creation of our cosmologies.

 

Follow me on Twitter, by RSS or sign up to receive posts via email, top sidebar to the right.

The social multiverse at work?

A friend of mine sent me the following, startled at how similar the beginning of it was to my pieces on the social multiverse. Interesting …

How Twitter Is Reshaping The Future Of Storytelling http://www.fastcoexist.com

Statistics: Burson-Marstellar

TNW.com

Some stats on Twitter courtesy Forbes:

twitsta

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