Why the Groundswell

Presenters: William Caputo
Ryan Barr
Matthew Piatko
Presentation Overview
 Introduction
 Chapter 1: Why the Groundswell – and Why Now
 Chapter 2: Jujitsu and the Technologies of the
 Chapter 3: The Social Technographics Profile
“Why We Wrote This Book”
 To provide strategy advice to clients all over the world.
 To give our clients and the world a clear perspective on the
whole trend, not just pieces of it, with a clear set of
strategic recommendations.
 They also wanted to bring to bear the assets we’ve
accumulated from analyzing the effects of technology on
business for more than a decade: consumer data, real client
stories, and focus on measurable business success.
 Package their advice up in a highly readable format, with
real stories of the people who make the groundswell such
an amazing place, to provide little insight into the
psychology behind what’s happening.
What’s In This Book
 Chapter 1: Why the Groundswell – and Why Now – is a call to action.
In it we show how the groundswell can threaten institutions like
companies and brands as customers draw strength from each other.
 Chapter 2: Jujitsu and the Technologies of the Groundswell – lays out
our basic premise that you can turn the groundswell to your advantage,
like a jujitsu master who turns the force on his opponent to his own
advantage. In this chapter we describe the component technologies of
the groundswell and show both how they threaten companies and how
you can benefit from them. Finally, we analyze how to evaluate new
 Chapter 3: The Social Technographics Profile – introduces a key data
tool. The Social Tehnographics Profile lets you examine any group of
people – Australians, first-time mothers, or your customer base – and
see in exactly what ways that group is participating in the groundswell.
This type of analysis should be a primary element of any groundswell
What’s In This Book
 Chapter 4: Strategies for Tapping the Groundswell starts the second
part of the book, focusing on strategy. We define the four step POST
process for creating strategies – people, objectives, strategy, and
technology – and reveal why starting with technologies is a mistake.
And because objectives are paramount to success, we define the five
primary objectives for groundswell strategy: listening, talking,
energizing, supporting, and embracing. Each of these described in the
chapters that follow, with an emphasis on the ROI of each technique.
 Chapter 5: Listening to the Groundswell explains who to use the
groundswell for research purposes with tools like private communities
and brand monitoring. We demonstrate with case studies from the
National Comprehensive Cancer Network and the car company Mini.
 Chapter 6: Talking with the Groundswell – shows how to use the
groundswell for marketing and PR, with techniques like user-generated
video, blogs, and communities.
What’s In This Book
 Chapter 7: Energizing the Groundswell illustrates a
key stranger – charging up your best customer and
enabling them to recruit their peers.
 Chapter 8: Helping the Groundswell Support Itself –
is about saving money and gaining insight by helping
your customer support each other.
 Chapter 9: Embracing the Groundswell – explains
how to accomplish the most powerful goal of all –
including your customers as collaborators in your
What’s In This Book
 Chapter 10: How connecting with the Groundswell Transforms
Your Company – starts the third part of the book, focusing on
transformation. It pulls all the previous techniques together and
answers this questions: how can I get my company positioned to
embrace groundswell thinking?
 Chapter 11: The Groundswell Inside Your company examines
how the same trends that empower customers in the
groundswell also empower employees in your company.
 Chapter 12: The future of the groundswell forecasts the next
steps in the groundswell trend. Well tell you how demographic
and technology forces will create a disaggregated, collaborative,
fluid world with the next ten years; how it will affect companies;
and what you should do to prepare.
Digg.com Example
 Kevin Rose at the age of 27 established an online news
commentary site.
HD DVD Hack code was published as a story on the
Rose’s website
AACS order him to take it down (cease and desist)
He took down the story
It kept popping back up
The “people” would not let this story go
Other Examples of People On
The Net Taking Over
 Pilot Gabrielle Adelman took photos of the CA coastline –
Streisand protest – Her protest spurred an increase in
YouTube video posted by law student Brian Finkelstein
(Comcast technician who fell asleep)
Snakes on a plane – Jackson line…I am tired of these MF
snakes on this MF plane…
Jennifer Laycock – wanted to raise money…T shirt – the
other white milk…Pork Board protested…Realized it was a
PR disaster – caved in and actually donated money.
Dunkin Donuts – “Truth about Dunkin Donuts”
What is the groundswell?
 A social trend in which people use technologies to get
things they need from each other, rather than from
traditional institutions like corporations.
 MySpace, EBay, Craigslist, Bit Torrent examples
 The trend of people connecting with and depending
on each other is clearly accelerating.
Why the groundswell is happening
 The groundswell trend is not a flash in the pan
 The groundswell comes from the collision of three
forces: people, technology, and economics
 1st People – People have always depended on each other.
People have always rebelled against institutional power.
 2nd Technology – The way people interact has changed.
People’s connections are fast and ubiquitous.
 3rd Economics – 2007 Web era advertising reached 14.6
Why you should care about the
 Theodore Sturgeon wrote “Microcosmic God”
 Neoteric – group of scientifically created people – new
generation every 8 days.
Scientist in the book studied them to see how they
overcome obstacles
This study shows how being fast is important. The first one
to get out there can establish the market.
The groundswell has changed the balance of power.
If ignored, the groundswell can eat up your profit margins,
cut down your market share, and marginalize your sources
of strength.
If you can’t Beat Them
 Some businesses aren’t eroding away, trying to fight
the groundswell. They are thriving in it.
 Bob Lutz GM Example – Blogging
 To turn the technologies to your advantage, you need
to understand them.
 Chapter 2 explains the neat trick of making the
groundswell your ally.
Jujitsu and the Technologies
of the Groundswell
 Groundswell is like Jujitsu
 Use your opponent’s strength for your advantage
 Manual for managers to learn techniques
 Learn about the new forces at work (online)
 Tools to engage those forces
 Learn technique to use those forces to your advantage
Big Principle vs. Component
 Technologies are details
 Important to understand the technologies
 Technologies rapidly change
 Understanding the technology is not enough
 The basic principle for mastering groundswell
 Concentrate on the relationships, not the technologies
People Creating
 People create through blogs and podcasts
 Build relationships through comments and links
 Potentially dangerous because they are not regulated,
and can mix fact and opinion
 Use technologies to search blogs and video sites about
your company; participate
People Communicating
 People connect through social networking sites
 MySpace/Facebook/Second Life
 Facilitate relationships virtually through technology
 These sites are time consuming; for individuals
 Participate by creating a company profile
Test-drive a Pontiac in Second Life
People Collaborating
 Collaboration can be facilitated by Wiki’s
 People contribute their knowledge with others
 Wiki’s enable relationships through “talk pages” where
members discuss or argue
 Wikipedia is the 8th most popular site on the web
Shows the power of Groundswell
 Monitor pages that reference or contain information
about the company…and update
People Reacting
 People react through forums, ratings, and reviews
 Forums predate the internet; people discuss through
forums on virtually every topic
 Reviews/Ratings (Amazon/Rotten Tomatoes)
 Relationships form through discussion and response to
 A threat because influencing experts is not enough
People Organizing Content
 Creating a taxonomy to organize content; tags
 Folksonomy - opinions of the people matter, not the
 No control over how someone tags or classifies a product
 Research how people tag the company; tag your own
RSS and Widgets
 RSS (Really Simple Syndication) – brings the updates
to you instead of looking for them
 Internet Explorer & Firefox are readers
 Gadgets are widgets for Windows/Google
Widgets are also on phones and web pages
 RSS is the lubricant for groundswell
Enables people to stay more connected through various blogs,
SNS’s, forums, etc.
 UPS widget on desktop tracks packages (Europe)
Evaluating New Technologies
 The groundswell test:
 Does it enable people to connect with each other in new
 Is it Effortless to sign up for?
 Does it shift power from institutions to people?
 Does the community generate enough content to sustain
 Is it an open platform that invites partnerships?
The Social Technographics Profile
 Different users contribute differently
 Creators
 Critics
 Collectors
 Joiners
 Spectators
 Inactives
The Social Technographics Profile
 Using these profiles, companies build a social strategy
 Based on demographics
 Based on groundswell contributions
 Different for each strategy
 Example: Alpha Moms are critics
The Social Technographics Profile
The desire to connect, create, stay in touch, and help
other people is the fundamental universal emotion
that drives people to the groundswell.
The Social Technographics Profile
 Profiling for a variety of demographics
 Youth vs. Elderly
 Different countries
 Political parties
 Male vs. Female
 Alpha moms
 Cancer patients
Why People Participate?
 Keep up friendships
 Paying it forward
 The creative impulse
 The validation impulse
The biggest challenge in the groundswell is
accomplishing a useful business goal with your clear