Not Rocket Science, (Letters to Rebecca)… Part V

Conversation Age

Dear Rebecca (Sam, Marco, LaTonya, Andrea, Ronnie, Miko, and Mitchell et al.),

Just a few thoughts to share with you in this letter.

First, I want you to know that I am very proud of you… heck, after reading this… half the world will be proud of you!

Two weeks ago, the closest things you had to a marketing plan were the cold calls you were getting from an onslaught of entry-level TRADITIONAL MEDIA sales reps, and an occasional hurried glance over your shoulder to see what your competitors were up to!

Please know that as we work on these steps… as we CREATE AWARENESS… as we EXPAND OUR INFLUENCE… as we INCREASE OUR CREDIBILITY… yes, as we develop our relationships… the competition will become increasingly…

ENVIOUS?… possibly.
ANNOYED?… probably.
IRRELEVANT?… certainly.

Of course, that’s as it should be… but, alas… I digress.

And over the past few days, our conversations highlighted the fact that you’ve really begun to take the reigns on securing your future. To be sure, the twenty-eight questions you asked means you’re thinking… and that’s good.

Just one caution…

A number of the questions also revealed fear… a fear that could potentially cause inaction, and that’s, well… not as good. Not as good… because the anxiety came, NOT from having to do these new things… but from the fear of doing them… wrong!

Yes, “doing it wrong” was a common phrase, so let me take the pressure off. You are totally capable of doing this… hands down, no question… and there is plenty of help available. Further, there’s only one “wrong” way to go about these activities… and that’s to be deceitful.

Everything else is just a different shade of right… with some ideas more effective than others.

So, let’s go do some right things.


Your content and style and audience… what to write and how to write and who will be interested… are topics that we will continue to discuss… both publicly and privately. In the meantime, here are a few places that you can read more about the importance of joining the conversation, as well as a few ideas on blogging topics.

And now, a story please… to end.

The early 1900’s were marked by a shift from the AGRICULTURAL AGE to the INDUSTRIAL AGE. Several decades later, the mid 1900’s saw the move from the INDUSTRIAL AGE to the MERCHANDISING AGE, and the late 1900’s brought us the INFORMATION AGE.

Each time, there was a major shift in technology that changed the world. And now… here we are again.

Call it AUTHENTICITY… call it TRANSPARENCY or WEB 2.0… our culture has changed to what many have described as… the CONVERSATION AGE.

And while it could be argued that the MERCHANDISING AGE brought out the worst in marketers… I believe the CONVERSATION AGE may bring out the best… for it is with conversation that we develop relationships that lead to true happiness and significance.

New Media and Social Networking have brought conversation to marketing.

No more standing on the sidelines and shouting our message at anyone who is unfortunate enough to be passing by. No more loud commercials, questionable ethics, and Professional PR spin.


Just conversation. Between you and your customers… and yeah, with your competitor’s customers as well. It’s a thing of beauty.

Done well, and assuming we have identified and understand the wants, needs, and desires of our Ideal Target Market… these simple steps are where relationships can not only get wide… but DEEP.

Very, very… deep.

You see, your customers or clients can LIKE your business… they can LIKE your product. But they can FALL IN LOVE with you and your people.

“Love…,” you ask?

Yeah, pretty much… if they could ever just get to know you.


I look forward to speaking with you soon.



What changes are you making to take advantage of the new rules and expectations of the Conversation Age?

Does everyone on your team understand how they fit into the plan?

What opportunities exist in NEW MEDIA CHANNELS to engage and strengthen relationships with your customers? With your competitor’s customers?


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