Come writers and critics who prophesize with your pens
And keep your eyes wide, the chance won’t come again.
And don’t speak to soon, for the wheel’s still in spin
And there’s no telling who it is naming.
For the loser now will be later to win,
And the times, they are a changin’
The times have been changin’ for a while now. We went from a mass media newspaper-radio-TV world to a Web world that, at first, promised more of the same. More of the same didn’t happen because of one powerful word – and that word is not Facebook, or Twitter, or even “blogging.” Those are all symptoms of a more fundamental shift.
No, the word is “access.”
If there is one fundamental message I could offer to business leaders as we approach the new year it would be this: “Recognize that access to your market, your customers, your members, your employees is now perpetually up for grabs, and act accordingly.”
That’s what “Web 2.0” has done. It has made it possible for nearly anyone with the right combination of expertise, creativity, drive, and time to make a go of it. Not that getting the mix right is easy. Easy is the new hard in many ways – but that logic applies to newcomers and incumbents alike.
Given the Dylan quote above, I should add that these are not prophesies I am peddling. I am looking at history, not the future. The times have already changed.
The one prediction I will venture is that 2010 is the year when those who are still mired in the mechanics of the tools and tactics – or worse yet, haven’t even gotten to that stage yet – will start falling behind.
There was a time when simply having a blog, or a Twitter account, or a Facebook page might offer an early adopter advantage. Those times are gone. Specific Web 2.0 technologies no longer “matter,” to borrow a bit of Nick Carr’s thinking. What matters is understanding the new environment they have wrought, and adapting accordingly.
The above is straight from the most recent edition of my Hedgehog & Fox newsletter. I rarely put newsletter content onto the blog, or vice-versa, but I thought I would post this short piece because (a) it reflects some of my views on the year ahead, and (b) I’d like to make a bit of a pitch for the newsletter. Open rates on the newsletter are usually north of 100% – suggesting that readers are finding quite a bit of value in it – and the following are a couple of actual comments from actual readers on the last newsletter:
Just got the Hedgehog & Fox newsletter. Great SoMe [Social Media] stuff! Check out the website http://jtcobb.wpengine.com/ or follow @jtcobb
Wonderful ideas! Thank you!
What have you got to lose? Subscribe and you will automatically get the last edition. If you don’t like it, just click “unsubscribe” and you’re done. Give it a whirl, eh?