Takeaways from a Q&A with Brian Solis

solispixI recently had the opportunity to discuss social media business and social media strategy with global thought leader, author, keynote speaker and principal consultant of The Altimeter Group, Brian Solis.

The session was part of an advanced class on social media workflow, a diploma course I’m heading with Rasmus Johnsen. The course is part of our academic further education programme for media professionals at The Danish School of Media and Journalism.

I was conducting the chat, armed with sharp and curious questions from the course participants, who during the course have been extensively drilled in aligning social media strategy and tactics with clear business goals.

The chance to pick Brian’s brain with his back catalogue of more than a decade of top level consulting, speaking and authoring was something of a coup for the professionals attending this class.

I have embedded the full session at the end of this post. Here are 6 short cuts to my personal selected highlights from the Google Hangout with Brian Solis:

  • The path to digital transformation: Timecode: 09:13.
    “A simple, but key question to ask yourself: What would my digital customer do differently than my traditional customer? Focus on behaviour, not technology and suddenly, things like social and mobile start to come alive”.
  • Struggling to meet business goals: Timecode 12:08.
    “Why is it so persistantly difficult for many organizations to align social media strategy with clear business goals?”
  • Experience architecture is your challenge in social media: Timecode 17:14.
    “Everybody is competing for the moment and it’s a bad habit. Think about content in social as a social object and start designing for the experience around that object.”
  • Organizational models for implementing social media. Time code 31:41.
    “The holistic model is when use of social media is widespread throughout an organization and people use it like they use email. In the holistic model which is honestly far away, people are self governing, self aware, educated and also strategic.”
  • Brian’s advice on social media policy: Timecode 37:11.
    “If you’re going to use social media in your job and it wasn’t part of your job when you were hired, you deserve a reward.”
  • On Lady Gaga and the force of community: Timecode 41:19.
    Lady Gaga puts a smiley up on her Facebook wall and it receives 93.000 likes. Can we still talk of social media with such a mass phenomenon?


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