1st December 2007

"Who’s on First - The role of Early Adopters…"

posted in Influencers, MVP |

I talk to a lot of people and invariably I’m talking about a lot the same things all the time - Web 2.0, Social Media, Influencers…  To be honest, all to often I lose track of many of these conversations - not the people - I’m good at tracking that…but it’s a lot of conversations.

Last week I picked up my mail at work and on my desk was the Nov. edition of Marketing News with a little note of thanks on the cover.  It didn’t really register, I just put in my to-read pile.  Today, I picked it up and tore off the outer wrapper and saw the headline story was "Who’s on First? Early Adopters spend more, share more and can make or break your product.  Rather than fear them, marketers today are building relationships with them."  (by )

Ok, that sounds right up my alley - I know instantly I’m either going to like this article or hate it for over simplifying the influencer model.  So, I sit down to read…

Page 1:  The set up - citizen marketers driving brand awareness and purchase influence through their conversations.  Relative authority of influencers increasing over historical rates.  Ok - I’m good, I certainly think this is true.  I find myself thinking about recent time I’ve shared with and Duncan Watts on either side of this position - debating the role of the influential.  I believe strongly in the influence model, but I fear its failure through over simplification (I blogged this recently).

Page 2:  Industry quotes and data/research supporting the concepts.  Low and behold, data and quotes from WOMMA co-presenter Ed Keller.  Cool, he’s one of THE guys on the topic.  A good warning from Charles Golvin at Forrester: "You have to be a bit more clever and thoughtful and engaging in developing your approach to this audience; the in-your-face, can’t-avoid-it advertising won’t fly."

Page 3: Wrapping it up with a b-2-b example…wait a minute, I know that guy.  The story turns to how Microsoft (disclosure - that’s where I work) engages with influentials (MVPs - disclosure - that’s the program I have global responsibility for) around the world to gather feedback on future products.  Suddenly I remember the conversation with the journalist as I’m reading my quotes.  Kind of a funny moment to be reading something and find yourself in it having forgotten the discussion:) 

Anyway, I like the article (good thing!) and was happy to see one of my signature statements included: "An important part of the ethos [of our program] is that MVP’s don’t do what they do in their communities to help Microsoft–they do it to help other users."

Thanks Daniel for sending me the mag or this is one I probably would have missed.


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This entry was posted on Saturday, December 1st, 2007 at 4:56 pm and is filed under Influencers, MVP. You can follow any responses to this entry through the RSS 2.0 feed. You can leave a response, or trackback from your own site.

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  1. 1 On December 3rd, 2007, Daniel said:

    No problem, Sean. Glad you liked the piece. Since my college days, I’ve always made a point to send hard copies of my articles to people I quote. I think it’s good practice, and it’s certainly something more reporters should do, at least as a courtesy.

    I’ve been quoted in local papers, etc., and I think it’s always weird when you read your quotes in an actual article. I’m just happy to (mostly) be the one asking the questions!

    Anyway, I hope you had a good Thanksgiving.


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