Tag Archives: chris brogan

Are You an Alligator?

7 Feb

Are You an Alligator?

“He’s an alligator: all mouth, no ears.”

I heard that expression recently and I thought it was so visual and so dead-on in the description of a person we were discussing. It refers to somebody that is so focused on speaking, that they seldom listen. I bet you deal with people like this all the time – maybe at work? Maybe at home?

Or worse, are you an alligator?

Technology and social media have given us great channels for sharing ideas and furthering our knowledge base on every subject imaginable. Yet, so many people seem to use it as a megaphone instead of a listening device. Whenever I start a dialogue with someone about the usefulness of something like Twitter, they usually say “how can I use it to get my message out?” I mean, sure, social media is great for that. But, it’s also great for listening to what people have to say about you and your brand. Still, so many people feel like they have to control the message.

Sometimes I run into people that just don’t care about what others have to say. They see social media as a pedestal and they’re only interested in one-way communication. There’s a certain social media figure that has risen to micro-celebrity over the last couple of years. He has a book out and he’s appeared on CNN and other mainstream media outlets. He uses all the buzzwords like “engagement” and “conversation,” but at the end of the day, all the evidence I see in his use of social media points to him being a big fat alligator: all talk, no ears.

We’ve all seen evidence of the alligator mentality in our political system right now. It isn’t about solving problems and doing the work of the people, it’s about posturing and making sure you slip in the right soundbite right along party lines. There’s very little listening going on.

Corporate America is another place this runs rampant. So many companies are unwilling or unable to listen more and talk less – or, as Chris Brogan calls it “grow bigger ears.” One company that continues to surprise me in a positive way is Dominos Pizza. You may remember they launched their own pre-emptive strike on their subpar pizza last year. They continue to be proactive and encourage conversation about their brand and ways they can do better.

Besides the Everglades, where do you see alligators? I’d love to get your perspective in the comments.

The Mouse Gets Social

2 Feb

The Mouse Gets Social

I’m a huge fan of Chris Brogan. I met him several years back at Podcast & New Media Expo (before the event was sold to Blogworld.) At the time, Chris was a podcaster – his reputation hadn’t blown up yet to his current status. Today, he’s one of a few marquee names in the space of new media business consultants. I’m an avid reader of his blog and constantly find things worth sharing via Twitter and Facebook.

This week I found an interview he published with Disney CEO, Bob Iger, and wanted to share it with you. First off, Bob is an incredibly busy high-profile person. Getting an interview with him is no small feat. Additionally, I was impressed with how open he was with Chris about some of the more granular aspects of Disney’s marketing efforts.

I found these points of particular interest:

  • How was the CEO of Disney sold on the value of social media for his company? Disney has over a billion people connected to their various social channels but how do you take that first leap of faith?
  • How does Disney find the right blend of high-tech vs. high-touch?
  • How does technology make an experience more compelling?
  • How does the CEO of Disney move past bad days?

Companies don’t get much bigger or more diverse in their offerings than Disney. Managing a brand of that size across so many channels is mind-numbing. If they can do it in a way that their CEO can articulate so well, why can’t other companies?