Vote at www.changethis.com/proposals/1279

The “Introducing Social Capital Value Add” proposal is now posted at:

http://www.changethis.com/proposals/1279

Please click the yes button and share the link …

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Pls vote for ChangeThis.com proposal

A few weeks ago, after receiving a reviewer’s draft of my “Introducing Social Capital Value Add”, one of the founders of www.changethis.com advised me to submit SCVA as a manifesto.

I just received confirmation that the Editorial Board has accepted my proposal and that it will appear on their site beginning May 20. 

Now I need anyone who believes that we need to figure out how to measure social media in a meaningful way to vote for the proposal.  It would be a great way to get the conversation into a higher gear.  Tom Peters, Chris Anderson, Gladwell, Richard Florida, Seth Godin and many more have instigated some great ideas through www.changethis.com.

Please go to www.changethis.com and vote for the “Introducing Social Capital Value Add” proposal and forward the proposal or this blog post to all like minded individuals.

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Measuring Social Media

Joseph Thornley, who recommended that I launch this blog a few months ago, hosts Third Tuesday in Toronto.

This coming Tuesday, the group has lined up a great topic and panel to address the issue of measuring social media.

Learn more here:
http://publicrelations.meetup.com/85/calendar/7931420/

Social Capital Value Add would agree with the thinking expressed in this article and podcast by INSEAD’s Herminia Ibarra (shout out to Valdis Krebs).  While in this instance, Herminia speaks about social capital in the context of career development, she says that efforts should be measured in terms of success.

One thing that investors and managers at all levels agree on is that social media exposes their corporations to new risks.  SCVA points towards the asset underlying social media and suggests that we should measure this in terms that will put social media on the priority list at the Board level.  That is, in the same terms that corporate success is measured … in terms of corporate valuation.

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What’s with the dog?

No sock.  No talking puppet.  This dog just came to us.  It wandered in and now it is part of our group.

SCVA mascot

It is not Toto.  This dog doesn’t even have a name.  Maybe we should have a contest to name the dog?  This dog is an empty vessel.  A shadow.  But Toto is our dog’s hero.  Toto has inspired “dog” here, to help us with the SCVA mission.

SCVA contends that the narcotic numbness that Marshall McLuhan used to describe our continuous embrace of our own technology, explains why the vast majority of corporations insist on using the same old hammer of traditional brand management when new tools and management methods focused on maximizing social capital must be fervently developed and employed.

The transition required is no less abrupt than that moment when the search of Dorothy, the Tin Man, Scarecrow and Lion reaches confrontation with the Great Oz façade and the curtain is pulled back to reveal a mere mortal.

The corporation is at risk of being the “humbug” caught shouting into the loudspeakers and pulling at the mechanistic levers of the past.

I hope that we discover together that if we make the kinds of investments that SCVA points us towards, we will all become “clever enough wizards” to quickly transform from Great Oz into leadership of great courage, heart and brains.

Playing a role in personal identity formation by recognizing our social network connections with certifications (the Scarecrow’s diploma), testimonials (the Tin Man’s ticking heart) and medals of honour (the Lion’s courage) will be familiar aspects of our strategy and tactics.

Our dog does not want Naomi Klein hassling him.  So let’s not pick “logo” as a name.  Let’s just say he helps animate our cause.  He is the SCVA mascot.

Okay … what’s with the thinking behind “the dog”?

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SCVA: Invitation to Great Minds!

Is There Value in Getting Involved?

This blog is an invitation to great minds from a rough and tumble practitioner of business. Criticize, collaborate, pontificate; choose your course, but please provoke the next step for this nagging collection of thoughts.  Shall we put them away and get back to the real (read: cynical) world or dedicate our life to them?

The basic idea is that a new form of social capital that is attributable to social media has emerged as a distinctive contributing factor to corporate valuation and this has changed the way business is practiced. It will change decisions that management makes and how investors choose to place their money. Over the last twenty five years markets have come to accept that the sexiest part of corporate valuation – the premium that acquirers are willing to pay over market trading value – is largely attributable to brand.

However, since Interbrand Corporation, a leading proponent of brand valuation technique since the late 1980s, began publishing its list of the world’s most valuable brands in 2001, two distinct groups of valuable brands can be observed in the top 100 – “broadcast made” brands and brand valuations that are “social network made” (this later category employing powerful network technology).

Great minds will ask: Is this distinction important? And if so, what valuation techniques should be employed to “social network made” companies vs. “broadcast made” brands?

 

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The Short Comings of Symbols

Symbols (like a brand) are valuable indicators. Some symbols tell us that the environment that businesses operate in has profoundly changed. Netscape is a good example. It is a symbol of great corporate value creation (and new risk) enabled by the introduction of the browser. The term Web 2.0 and the Facebook/Microsoft deal are symbols of the new environment that has emerged since mid-2004 when broadband over took dial up.

Examination and discussion of these symbols is the preoccupation of a lot of great bloggers. Who did what deal? What one ego said about another? The death pool mentality … that benefits from the energies of risk takers, but also may stifle some. It is too bad that Randal Graves was right, “There’s nothing more exhilarating than pointing out the shortcomings of others, is there?”.

Dwelling on the symbols can only take us so far in changing corporate management and dealing with the complexities of an “inflection point” for business that is the result of so many factors that challenge us in so many different ways.

Social Capital Value Add is designed to focus the attention and efforts of investors, managers and their agents beyond the symbols towards building out corporate social networks that are maximized for social capital.

Over the first 20 posts or so of this blog, we’ll introduce the SCVA argument with short pithy little gems like this.

UPDATE, Sept.6, 2008 – this was before Seth suggested posting “Introducing Social Capital Value Add” and things shifted from me taking this idea as far as I can, to following the idea as far as I can.


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