The Data Is The NetworkCurated two articles this morning about Geo's impact on mobile search prompting an interesting note from Brian Yanish (@MarketingHits) a good friend and trusted Internet marketing source. Brian got me thinking...
Data has a THING going on.
I thought about Sun MicroSystems' old tag, "The Computer Is The Network" and realized something. The computer isn't the network anymore. Data is the network.
Your computer is just where the apps that decode the data reside. Data has always been daisy chained by hyperlinks. When a page is linked to another across the web they become cousins.
When I consume both pages following the link from one to the other, LIKE them and incorporate them into ScentTrial Marketing I add a new dimension, a new audience to the original post. After all of that what we mean by "data" and "web page" becomes something different than where we started.
Data is more Social, Local and Mobile (SoLoMo) to start with than even Sun's the computer is the network idea. Wonder if Sun could imagine we would have tiny Sun MicroSystems in our pockets called smart phones.
Everything moves all the time now.
What you see NOW speaks more to TIME than what happens next. What happens next? Who knows. This post may be retweeted, quoted and linked. Those network actions change the post I'm writing in significant ways such as:
- My post becomes OUR post.
- The Data Is The Network.
- Move from creator to curator and back again.
- We wait for The Great Data Pumpkin.
- We are all publishers now.
MY Becomes OURSWhen I started marketing candy for M&M/Mars we crafted messages, campaigns and ideas to sell more M&M's than our dreaded competitor's candy (Hershey). We used data to inform our tactics and strategies, but once the army was in motion there was no going back. We couldn't change our campaigns until the following year.
Good luck with such a closed loop today.
Social Media Marketing and the immediate feedback loops it creates mean such inflexible and massive campaigns are untenable. Small is beautiful. Small can be tweaked, changed, modified or abandoned. Marketers may see trends in the NOW that merit moving to a medium level of investment, but the kind of "invade Russia in the winter" campaigns from my youth are gone.
I've worked with and know a lot of marketers. We all have a, "We know best" ego you see in Steve Jobs biography or on MadMen. To maintain such ego now means your ego writes checks your ass can't cash :) since there isn't a Steve Jobs among us (sadly). I only "created" my first website. After creating FoundObjects.com in 1999 (now RIP) I did what the data told me to do.
Wish I was as good as that last sentence made me sound (lol). If you asked for a single secret to make more than $30M online I would answer in a single word - TESTING. My old boss is laughing as she reads this. She had to tie me down and waterboard me to believe in testing. I'm a believer. As the feedback loops get faster NOT being a believer in testing, testing and testing some more is suicide.
Secret Marketing Implication #1
Testing culture is a must to achieve Internet marketing success. Take our Do You Have A Testing Culture Quiz to find out if you have a testing culture.
The Data Is The NetworkOnce anything you create is published to the web traveling the infinite pathways of the Internet your creation becomes a beeping node. "Hey I am here, let's play," you stories need to sing. I've discussed the bending of the Internets space/time in several posts. Content becoming a node inside a network of nodes is like being the cool kid on the playground. You want to be the kid everyone wants to play with.
The cool kid on a playground might know he or she is cool. That "I Am Cool" knowledge may make him or her that much cooler. Baseless claims don't work well in the greatest lie detecting amplifier the world has ever created. You want to be kind, accepting and as nonjudgmental as a human can be since BS walks online.
From Creator to Curator and Back AgainWhen this posts leaves on its journey I will watch it like a mother taking children to school. Soon my creation will become "our creation" and my second job begins. My second job is to become content curator of the content I just created. Today 90% of this article's network is created from my brain out through my fingers to this page. The article will grow, expand and change by about 10% as others weigh in, Tweet and share.
The ratio between created and curated content will need to be reversed in the future. Content will be 10% created and 90% curated. This may sound extreme, but if your data (your creations and curations) from your network is in a "the bigger your network becomes the easier your life gets" situation then 10% creation to 90% curation sounds helpful, right and perhaps even a must.
Secret Internet Marketing Implication #2
The first one to figure out how to do more with less wins (5 Magical Do More With Less Curation Tools).
The Great Data PumpkinWe sit with Charlie Brown waiting for the arrival of the Great Data Pumpkin. We will never see The Great Data Pumpkin, but magical forces are at play in our pumpkin patch. These "magical forces" such as an algorithm so complex NASA should have invited it (Google) and a place where we can see how much weight our high school chums gained (Facebook) are surely magical elves.
These elves race about resetting and realigning everything every second of every day. These are smart elves, rich elves who create an infinite arbitrage of position, influence, attention and cash. Winners win more. Losers lose more.
If I could tell you how all of this worked I wouldn't (lol).
The ever increasing complexity means no one can know the Great Data Pumpkin. Anyone who tells you they know have seen and worked with the Great Data Pumpkin is selling something. We know some important characteristics of the Great Data Pumpkin including:
- NOW is the web's single time dimension.
- SPEED is a must since what is fast today is slow tomorrow.
- MORE today seems less next year.
- SOCIAL we are in this soup together more and more.
- LOCAL the more content we create the more local it becomes.
- MOBILE data is the network, but the phone and the pad are the game consoles.
Local in this context means micro. At the top of any content's silo's you answer broad questions. What is Internet marketing? What is SEO? These "top of the funnel" questions branch out even as you write them. SEO may require you explain Search Engine Marketing (SEM) and that could become an article spawning more branches.
Secret Internet Marketing Implication #3
The more content you write the more "local" it becomes.
We Are All Publishers NowDivorce the idea "publishing" has anything to do with print and you see every company, brand, product and individual is a publisher now. Even if your "publishing" is limited to sharing pictures of your grandchildren on Facebook, we are all publishers.
This idea everyone is a publisher now is bigger than you think.
Every company, brand, product and individual is a content creator, curator, TV programmer, film director, SEO guru and storyteller. We all need to create more content than we can imagine. This is why process and tools are so important. I Scooped two recent posts together today. 5 Magical Do More With Less Curation Tools went mega-viral with an audience approaching a million when it was published a month ago.
Not hard to see why. We all need to do more with less. Tools are one way we plant the infinite amount of content crops we need to feed an insatiable machine. Tools stop Internet marketers from running naked and screaming into a cold November night (lol).
Process can also help chop down Jack's impossibly large content marketing bean stalk. My favorite process book is HOW: Why How We Do Anything Means Everything by Dov Seidman, and my favorite point in Seidman's book is process is the only thing you truly own, the only IP (Intellectual Property) that matters.
If we are all publishers those with the best process win.
Those companies, brands, products or individuals who understand a few seconds before everyone will use new tools to disrupt competitors and markets. Gates left Harvard to disrupt PCs. Zuckerberg left Harvard to disrupt the world.
If you have a choice between following in Borg-like zombie fashion or disrupting my advice is to opt for the later. Zombies aren't fun at parties and they stink. Rebel disruptors drive better cars, have more fun and throw better parties.
We are all rebel disruptors now.
Here is to the rebel disruptor in all of us.
Curating Data's Thing As It Goes OnGreat conversation on Google plus with some power internet marketers about SEO and Data Got A THING Going On.
with Mark Traphagen, Bill Slawski, Shawn Lippert, Lyndon NA
Stephen Peacock, another great Internet marketer just joined our SEO and Data party on G+.
Nice Comment from Bill Slawski (@Bill_Slawksi):
Enjoyed your article tremendously, and I agree that ecommerce has changed in a number of ways since the 90s. A number of ecommerce site owners I've been talking to lately seem to recognize the needs to address those changes, while that point still seems to elude some.
Had a great time visiting when I came down to speak at the Raleigh SEO meetup. Hopefully, I'll get the chance to come down again sometime soon - I really liked the Raleigh area.< Marty Note, Mark and I agree bringing Bill back to speak at Phil Buckley's (@1918) SEO Meetup would be a great idea. >
SEO and Data Got A THING Going On included in @Schwartz_jordan's The J. S. Social Gazette today. Thanks Jason.