The Musings Of An Opinionated Sod [Help Me Grow!]

The Power Behind The Throne …
October 20, 2011, 6:15 am
Filed under: Comment

There’s so much talk at the moment about what drives social media.

Some adfolk say it’s about the content.
Others claim it’s about giving a sense of belonging.
Then there’s the people who believe it’s about the level of engagement.
And then there’s the group who proclaim it’s all about interactivity.

Whether you accept those views or not, they tend to be the common themes being banged on about by the ad industry right now.

When you talk to the social media hub brand “owners”, you get a different story.

The people at Wikipedia say it’s about letting people “know everything”.
The folks at Google talk about, “giving access to everything”.
Facebook’s mob love to say it’s about “connecting to everyone”.

Well that’s all well and good but while they’re all busy desperately coming up with ways to attract even more people to their destinations – from building apps to browsers to new tech altogether – it’s worth remembering that their biggest threat to their business is not the folk in Silicon Valley, but the people who power Silicon Valley and the rest of the World put together … the electricity companies.

So if I was Google and I wanted to ensure I always had a huge amount of cash coming through my doors, I wouldn’t purely rely on the ad revenues I get from my search products or the fees I get from the Android devices being sold, I’d go out and buy a power company because even if overnight people dropped me for Microsoft or Apple or Facebook or some company that’s not started yet but will become the talk of the town within 3 month … I’d still have shitloads of cash pouring in to my business and I’d be able to do it without wasting another cent on mistakes like Google Wave, Buzz or Answers.

The industry might love to talk about how many people want an iPhone 5 or visit Facebook, but the real power behind social media are the companies who power the whole thing … so don’t fall into the trap of only following the category, look a bit deeper and a bit broader and you might find out that the people your brand really needs to keep an eye on are the people who have nothing to do with your category at all.

[You can have this on me George!]


35 Comments so far
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No idea if this stacks up but I like it just for the evil thinking.

Over to George.

Comment by DH

thats why the bastard no longer resides in happy fucking mountain. it was like having the devil as a fucking house guest.

Comment by andy@cynic

Regarding power station purchase. Typical of your twisted logic and I like the rationale but I don’t know if I agree with the conclusion.

At the most obvious end of objectivity, a power company wouldn’t fit in with Google’s strategic model, but as some are saying, when they do, they’re not proving to be successful so to use that well known turn of phrase, “it’s so mad, it might just work.”

Comment by Pete

I know fuck all about business but I’m sure “it’s so mad it just might work” is not the type of thing to inspire shareholder support. Just saying.

Comment by Billy Whizz

who the fuck are you and what have you done with billy?

Comment by andy@cynic

The only comment I will make Robert is that as I would expect from you, it’s a thought provoking perspective.

Comment by George

havent you just broken about 500 fucking company rules on commenting by saying youre not commenting?

grown some balls in the last 24 hours have you or will mary be ripping them off for jeopardising the families future. wouldnt blame her, fucking stupid thing to do. twat.

Comment by andy@cynic

If things turn to shit george, I can help. I need a new cleaning lady. Pays big bucks. Well, it does if you’re an illegal immigrant cleaner.

Comment by Billy Whizz

thats his normal salary.

Comment by andy@cynic

The best social media place is a bar. More interesting people, talking about better shit, loads of booze and wall to wall babes. Beats every place on the internetbubble hands down. except maybe

Hey George, get your bosses to buy that, it will make you a star, at least with the men.

Comment by Billy Whizz

sorry to burst your deluded little fucking bubble, but wall to wall babes in a strip club is not the same fucking thing as wall to wall babes. doesnt change the outcome for you though so dont fucking worry about it.

Comment by andy@cynic

actually it does, you stand a chance of seeing tits in one. what the fuck was i thinking.

Comment by andy@cynic

And I still get to see the goods without having to put in the effort to talk to them.

Comment by Billy Whizz

Why not just buy America and get all the tax income? That’s right, there isn’t any is there. Power stations work for me then, must keep youporn online.

Comment by Billy Whizz

ive got a different view rob, its who gives a fuck. fairly water fucking tight argument im sure youll afuckingree. if you know whats good for you, which you dont but you never fucking know what miracles can fucking happen.

Comment by andy@cynic


Comment by niko

where the fuck have you been?

about fucking time you made an appearance, ive been selflessly holding the fucking thing together while youve been shagging birds and taking drugs and basically having a much better fucking time than i have.

now where the fuck is doddsy and swearalot?

Comment by andy@cynic

A brace of hydroelectric schemes and a couple of component recovery businesses would do nicely thank you.

Comment by Chris

dontIrony fucking agree with him chris, it sets a fuckig very dangerous precedent.

Comment by andy@cynic

The post rationalisation on returning home with a 3 valley dam scheme and a small portable windmill would be an explanation worth hearing.

Comment by Chris

do you know campbell has bought a windmill. a real fucking windmill in super windmill country holland? the fuckers got more money than fucking gadgets. have to say gadgets because if he only had $1 it would be more than he has fucking sense. makes my pile of Canadian shit almost look a wise fucking investment.

Comment by andy@cynic

Holland eh? Only a convenient step away from Central Shanghai.

Dare I ask how the grand project is going. Not working the builders too hard?

Comment by Chris

For cash generation, better to choose a business with a higher profit-margin than a regulated utility. For strategic fit, target the businesses that profit from facilitating your existing businesses, i.e reduce the share of the customer’s dollar that third parties cream off.

Comment by Eggsucker.

You’re assuming power generation companies will continue to be a utility. I don’t agree.

Comment by Pete

Hi Eggsucker …

Not sure if I agree with you as regards choosing a business with a higher-profit margin. Of course that’s ideal, but so is longevity and market demand. On top of that, as Pete indicated, the way the World is consuming power, I wonder if this industry will still be viewed as a utility in times to come. Sure, it won’t be some aspirational brand type of thing, but possibly it’s role and significance in people’s minds and lives will increase as natural resources of fuel gets more and more impacted.

Nice to have you pop by. Hope you come again.

Comment by Rob

im with billy, they should buy youporn. it might make no fucking money but either does youtube but its a fuckload more interesting to watch.

Comment by andy@cynic

Reading through the comments, it makes me feel all gooey inside – just like old times, which means insulting, off topic and sexual reference.

Comment by Rob

the art and entertainment in one place. that’s why i like it. but not as much as i like myself.

Comment by TOTOinTrouble

Solar City, by Elon Musk (Paypal and Tesla), and Google created a $250 million “fund” in June. The term “fund” sounds a bit off – more like Google invested in them. Using “fund” makes it seem more like CSR. I started taking a look into solar power after watching this video of James May:

Forums seems to be an unfocused area of “social media” – such vibrant and passionate communities using web 1.0 tools. Read a few examples of people with forums creating high earning conferences/expos.

Comment by Jacob B

Hey Rob, what would be other examples of industries powering this: power companies, data farms…?

Dunno if it is true: “people who made the most money in the gold rush were the ones selling shoves and buckets.”

Comment by Jacob B

Not sure if that’s totally true – but probably made a hell of a lot more than most. Bloody good story though.

Comment by Rob

facebook knows everything except how to make me give a flying fuck about it.

so campbell, which came first, you or facebook? stupid fucking question but at least you turned it into something a bit more fucking meaningful than the pithy fucking chart every moron probably has shared on their poxy fucking pages. meaningful in the loosest sense of the fucking word. looser than paris hilton after half a gram of coke up her fucking plastic surgeon sculpted hooter.

Comment by andy@cynic

Could you then ask what is fueling the energy companies? That’s where the real cash is, right?

Comment by Age

but the catholic church fuckers all ready have that shit signed up. pricks.

Comment by andy@cynic

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