The period of mourning is over. Organizations don’t control the conversation. Technology has restored the power to the lowest common denominator, the individual. (Hint…organizations never controlled the conversation. It was all an illusion anyway.)
As some come to grips (finally!) with this new reality, there are some unexpected observations that must shape any corporate communication strategy as it relates to conversation with the intended audience or consumer:
- Conversations are organic. You can’t fabricate them. And when you do, it will be obvious.
- Conversation evolve over time. The way we talk to our 3 year old child is different than how we talk to them when they are 30 years old. The same is true in corporate or marketing communications.
- Conversations are between people. Brands are platforms. Campaigns are constructs designed to manufacture behavior. People influence people.
- Conversations are full of surprises. New voices. New ideas. Uncomfortable chatter. Challenges to authority. And visions of a different tomorrow.
- Conversations involve commitment. Time. Energy. Trust. Without those you’re just making noise. (And I don’t like noise.)
The most effective communication is also the most inefficient and costly: conversation.
Is is worth it? If it’s not, move on.