October 12th, 2011
Is it just me? Am I the only person preoccupied with the potential effects of the “occupy” protests? Not to be an alarmist, but they could have dire results in our economy, results that would greatly please the forces that have been attacking our democracy. (A great resource for staying up to date: ListenLogic.com ‘s Occupy Threat Center for all the latest information, including the threat level graph).
My intent is not to be political, but to help identify potential opportunities to utilize Social Media in a positive brand building, value generating way. As I regularly post in my personal networks, what good is a protest that generates negative sentiment without providing potential solutions and recommendations? Reminds me of the tale of the Pied Piper which only objective was to lead the rodents to drown in the river. Who’s problem did that solved? Definitely not those of the rodents.
For years financial institutions have been talking about Customer Relationship Management, recently increasing their retail presence and positioning themselves as community pillars and civic partners in helping grow the local economies which they serve. Well, I would say the time is now to create a war room with your marketing departments, ad and PR agencies and develop strong messages that communicate potential solutions to helping America create value. Identify project opportunities that will not only enrich the economy in the communities they serve but also give a chance to aimless protesters to put their efforts into building instead of lame sittings, walkings and whatever else “occupiers” do.
My recommendation would be to look at campaigns such as Pepsi Refresh to identify ways to develop local economy opportunities via programs like micro-loans to small businesses, re-training facilities and even employ potential local ambassadors to help brand image and idea identification in their communities. Let’s provide the naysayers with tools and resources to build, not destroy. While an industry wide effort would be more efficient, I recommend that you start with the following steps:
- Monitor what is being said about your company
- Identify the influencers – where did the comments originate?, anyone or specific group is most vocal?
- Analyze their main concerns – Ideate ways to solve, ameliorate
As business people and bloggers let’s start our own movement – “Occupy minds to produce not destroy” I welcome not only your retweets but your ideas on how we can help make a difference. Let’s take a break from writing about the meaning of a Facebook “like,” or the chances of Google + succeeding, etc, and come up with ideas and recommendations to use the tool of Social Media to rebuild and resolve.
Stay tuned for my next blog. In the meantime, please share your thoughts below; I appreciate each and every one of your insightful comments, and I promise to pay extra attention to any opposing point of view. You can also contact me via email: firstname.lastname@example.org, Twitter: @zeusofmarketing and Facebook: Zeus of Marketing. You can also find additional contact information via LinkedIn:http://www.linkedin.com/in/jrgrana