We’ve seen this movie before. In the early days of the web, it was the website that created a browser-fueled gold rush — until organizations realized that maintaining a website that provided real value was more difficult than launching something quickly. The same story is now playing out in social — getting something launched on Facebook, Twitter or Pinterest is easy, but building an engaged and meaningful following isn’t. And the same will happen in the rush to mobile if companies take a “channel” approach vs. a behavioral approach. In short, it’s not about mobile as much as it is about understanding mobility.
I liveblogged an Our Social Times event on Facebook for Liberate Media a few weeks back. It really struck me at the time, that you could easily divide the case studies presented into “stunts” and “relationship building”. Stunts work well in the early stages of a new technology’s life, but once the noise and engagement levels go up, it gets harder and harder to get attention with that sort of behaviour.
People who rely on stunts will always be rushing to the Next Big Thing, and abandoning other things as the become more challenging. But the people who reap most benefit from the evolving digital space will be those who use long-term investment in building relationships and value on current platforms to springboard success in the emerging ones.