METROTOPICS

The Questions You Ask.

Very often in life, the most important lessons are simple ones. For some time, I have shared with clients that when conducting customer research, or research of any kind, you get answers to questions you ask. That’s a simple, yet important lesson I have learned over the years. What questions are you asking?  And why…

Is Your Brand Strategy So 20th Century?

If the 20th century will be remembered for being the “media age,” the 21st century, so far, will be remembered as the “social age.”  How brands are marketed and understood are different for each age.  In the “media age” brands were predominately marketed one to many — as in driven persistently to the consumer, often by large companies with outsize advertising…

Conversations

In today’s social and professional tribes — the groups we’re most focused on at Metro Tribal — the “conversation” is the key unit of analysis.  Conversations among and between tribe members in person, on social media, via mobile devices.  Conversations are encoded with tribal beliefs, values, and norms.  Understanding how these elements of tribal life…

Beware the Dashboard?

Technology is our friend.  Technology is also our enemy.  It’s value neutral, so how we choose to use it, and whether it becomes friend or foe, is determined largely by who we are and what we believe. Perhaps nothing more encapsulates this friend-foe dichotomy of technology than the dashboard.  It has become increasingly popular for companies…

What Are You Measuring — Ala Seth Godin

So important to realize that we measure what we value and what we value is based on what we believe.  Excellent post by Seth Godin today that talks about how we can tend to use false proxies for measuring our success. False because they do not really actually measure our success; we use them either because they…

Tribal as Constant Amid Social Media Craze

OK. So I’ve read two interesting blog posts about how Twitter and Facebook are simply channels. And that’s it.  Communication channels.  As in just because you tweet or just because you load your timeline up with really interesting stuff doesn’t mean it will have any effect on the audience you’re targeting.  So if you build…

Associations and Tribal Leaders

Like many words, the word “tribe” has taken on new meaning in an era where people from around the globe can easily and rapidly cluster around ideas, interests, goals, or even hobbies.  Social media has given rise to groups that would otherwise not have been able to form and collaborate for common purpose and reward. …

What He Said . . .

Once in a while (OK, really often), someone comes along and says something you always try to say, only they say it much better. Drake Baer wrote a great article for Entrepreneur magazine explaining why so many companies are seeking out the help of Anthropologists to understand their customers better. Read here.

The Only Story That Matters℠ (TOSTM℠)

Our work over the years has confirmed for us that in a new age of digital storytelling around brands, the only story that matters is the story that customers, or groups of customers, tell themselves, everyday (about the world, stuff in their environment, your brand!) — a narrative that guides every choice they make. We…

It’s Not What You Sell, It’s What You Believe – Bill Taylor – Harvard Business Review

Bill Taylor in HBR points out in many ways what it means to be a tribal leader.  What often distinguishes tribal leaders from ordinary leaders is that tribal leaders understand, consciously or unconsciously, the power of symbols and symbolic action.  Symbols are products of assumptions, beliefs, values, norms, and rituals.  They convey meaning.  They are…