The theory of a new Internet

The Internet is a human forward motion machine, basically because connections scale. In that precise moment, information begets for more information and influence, paradoxically this allows other people connecting easily amongst them, that collision provokes the effect that anyone with talent or passion will be able to create the connection that increase the impact of the action, interaction o relationship.

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Human Media, Talking about People and Human Relations on the Internet

Implementing the Human Media approach means that you’re talking with people, not software or technological devices. I know, it should be obvious, but it really isn’t. Believe me. Implementing the digital-human approach means that you remain human despite information technologies. This is quite different to what is taking place in Social Media; especially nowadays, focusing on the relevance of social platforms and tools and how they use people. This seems odd, but that’s how it is. Just take a look at Facebook or Twitter and you’ll understand what I’m talking about. We all seek to be connected and emotionally “touched”, we seek to connect with what we love, with whom we love. To that end, one must be believable, transparent, true, close, active, emotional, seek commitment and connect with the other side. All of this would indicate that we have to be human. Even across the Internet.

Contact Between People

The paradigm of all this could lie in channelling and using the resources of the Social Media universe (channels, media, platforms and tools) to make human relations happen which emotionally connect companies and people with an approach focusing on results and true ROI. That is, to make use of “human business interactions” to build interactive bridges between brands and communities through human contact; that is, between people, favouring a communication that is original and non-intrusive as part of continuous feedback processes.

No software can resist coming into contact with its users. That’s why the Internet is so fascinating. A relationship is worth, at least, 1,000,000 times more than a click or making an impression. It is also more difficult to achieve and involves much more than brands and companies are willing to give. It all boils down to how you monetise and create this interaction. Here’s a tip: humanise your processes and pay more attention to human relations. Think about it.

Photo credit: mlive.

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Looking on the Social Web for Humanity and Rays of Light

One of my favorite pastimes has always been watching people watching, you learn a lot. One day I started paying more attention to the environment we were living and how this marketing and media revolution was changing the game. Indeed, during the last two years the game has changed considerably, it has turned more smart and selective.

Social media was born as something difficult to measure, but inevitably it appeared new ways of measure our activity and its results. It was not easy, sure, and it did not happen in one night, but eventually business began to discover new winning paths using the social web.

Social Media is Evolving

Social media, as any other type of marketing and communication, it is evolving right now. Through the last years, advertising and PR were focused on the “big idea”: manipulating the hearts and minds of organizations and individuals… and thus, business itself. Then the question was… How could I manipulate and alienate businesses and people? Nobody knew exactly how to do it, but the numbers – from whenever they come – showed that it worked.

The “Social” Revolution

Time before the Internet appeared and with it digital, and then the revolution, the “social” revolution, meaning the disruption of marketing and communication. The Internet destroyed any kind of frontier that prevented from a free, human, authentic and genuine communication, today the social web has thunder any trace of retention measure towards a global communication. Now, creating connectivity and resonance with any person of this world is possible, yes it’s possible. All thanks to certain human extensions called Twitter, LinkedIn, blogs, Facebook, Foursquare, Pinterest, Instagram, Flickr, Youtube, Google +.  We had something really valuable to work with.

Back to the Past Again?

However, we wanted to step further before saving what we had closer, people. We forgot creating long-lasting relationships with our community members. The fact that hundred of thousands of organizations, agencies and marketers were not paying attention to the existing link between relationships, results and measurement made that they started ironically focusing on online advertising, massive marketing and influence. Sadly, it take us back to the conversation isolation and media saturation, it take us back to the over-communicated past society.

Happily, it is changing again. Thanks God we are more human than ever and we’re looking for this small ray of light that the social web creates, and not for the disturbing noise that come with it.

Photo credit: scrap your adventure.

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Use the Social Web to Tell Stories that Create Resonance

Let me be clear, we do not want you to sell us, neither that you talk about what your business can offer us, Not to mention, the classic “how to be the best alternative.” If you think that we want to listen how fascinating your products o services are, you will be mistaken. Hide the word marketing in the last drawer of your office. Human Media goes beyond recreating nonexistent necessities, so marketers can launch a new product that looks the same, but improved and then, creating another supposed necessity, the wheel does not stop here…

A New Vocabulary

¿Do you want to scare your audience? Name some of this words: sales, target, loyalty o data base. However, this words are essential.

Whether you want to assume it or not, the game has changed. If you intend to carry out any of the actions listed above – hope you will, if not you will be damn lost – this is the new vocabulary: connect, align, guide, equip, create resonance and consolidate.

It’s not about the technology, but people and what happens among them.

Talk about… emotions, feelings, self-effacement, failures, examples, commitment, people, love, passion and eagerness. Tell a story, the story of you and your business, how you started, these hard moments you had to face, how you have got here. Stay human, always.

Touching People

Some months ago, I spoke about Social Media for some Realtors and state agents. When the event had finished, in the Q&A time, one attendant told me that feelings, trust, credibility, transparency and emotions had been always there. Nothing new. He told me also, that it was surprising that in the new media era we will come out with values again. My answers was pretty simple and clear “if you truly want to play in this new scenery, these are the rules towards real results, if not you can always swim to nowhere.”

The new marketing and the communication that goes with it, it’s not about social media, neither complex technologies. It’s about human relationships. resonance and alignment with people. Everything has a story, a human story, touching, moving and friendly. It’s then when you “touch” people. In this exact moment you are creating resonance, the new marketing.

The Human Story

It’s not about what you say, it’s the story that you create and how it touches people emotionally. The story of a brand, the sort of a business founder that had to leave his country for immigrating to France so he can master his craft, then he left to Canada and later on he passed his knowledge to his sons, they have followed his path years later and now it’s one of the most successful business focused on spas and pools of spain. Talk about real stories of real people, don’t talk about Cinderella, twitter PROs or celebs, it’s not going to work, they are just victims of this ego-system part of the hype-environment we are living now.

Make use of this opportunity: tools, APPs, channels and platforms that will help you to connect in a very human way. If we practice human media through social media, we can change the focus, actions and epicenter. We get rid go the tech-obsession, social hype and #smokemaking and we empower people and it’s human interactions.

In its Heart

Don’t forget that the audience is the heart of the brand. Now the brands have the responsibility for making the public part of its story. Human Media makes possible the engagement between public and brand. It creates emotional touch points that makes people feel part of the brand and the story that it telling to the market. However, there’s still something missing, how the brand stays human and transmit to their customers what it is through interpersonal communication process. Tell people about your desires, fears, achievements and goals, beginnings, funny things, tell the story. Make your brand human, make it alive.

Photo credit: Travel with a challenge.

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The Opportunity of Social Media Remains in the Human Relationships

remains on the human relationships - Isra GarcíaDuring all this time I have realized that we pay to much attention to concepts – perhaps – too abstracts, such as the times you interact with the audience or how many visits have our blog or youtube channel. Ok, it might not be as abstract as we may think, at the end, it’s our day-to-day job (bonus: you can also buy it on the Internet) No, it’s really abstract when we compare with staying human.

The Meaning of Staying Human on the Internet

We talk about experiences, not concepts. We talk about feelings, not about promotions. Emotions and not services and most importantly, we don’t talk about our business, we do it about stories, stories that create resonance. We align people with people.

Are we truly social? This is quite weird, sometimes we forget the word “social” and owe just focus on the word “media” or “marketing.” Businesses lose their authenticity and brands turn themselves into robots – and remember that they won’t flirt with you – looking for more and more robots like them, so they can easily automatize processes and content that get lost in its way to nowhere, in its way to the auto-promotion, mediocrity and silence of the ego-system. However, there’s a new offer that rewards the credibility, authenticity, engagement and alignment. In other words, the opportunity remains in the connectivity created by human interactions.

Where’s the Opportunity?

We don’t know what is going to happen tomorrow, who knows? What Human Media means for us?

If you are a business that intends to use the Social Web in a meaningful and thoughtful way, my advice is that you may focus on experiences that happens in your community, connect with people within your community and decrease the noise by creating more conversations – this starts by listening – this conversations could happen beyond your community, you should be there too, engage personally with every customer – not a fan – and really make use of the human interactions through the Social Web. I do think that brands, companies and organizations should embrace the fact that, in this 2012 – 2013, connecting first by staying human is the key for a sustainable business model as a result of building a foundation among your community. Then more and more brands will approach Social Media from a human perspective (Human Media), then business will create relationships, and this will stay longer than sales pitches.

If you are a business using the Social Web for creating connectivity with your customer, my advice is that focus on interactions and execute them with brilliance, you should go beyond counting fans, followers and likes. There’re some ways to do that, but it is no as easy as create a Facebook page or a Twitter account and waiting for results to come soon. Create content that matters to your audience, offer different ways for them to connect with you, allow them to have a voice in your framework, allow freedom of interaction and relationship inside your business, answer clearly and quickly and in the most human way possible.

The opportunity remains in the human relationships.

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Human Media Practices

human media tactics - isra garciaA fundamental shift is needed in the way we communicate, market and do business, this shift relies on the convergence of people, human interactions and the Social Web.

Here you have some practices that help to explain the phenomenon of Human Media and how it leverages the Social Web through Human Business Interactions.

Human Media Works

– Human relationships are the core: When I started in New Media, it was early 2008. At the beginning, I didn’t care about making a sale or doing business. What mattered to me was becoming known by a lot of people and it doesn’t mean just introducing myself, if that is all, how many people can you meet on the Social Web on a daily basis?

I started building relationships with people I have things in common, sharing information and thoughts, reading contributions from other people and commenting on them, highlighting people who were doing work that I thought mattered. All of this brought me closer to them, then from time to time I was reaching out to these people to see how things were going. Suddenly, among other things I found myself working on a New York Healthcare company’s social media project, being appointed social media adviser, for a London-based agency, blogging for the number one social media resources site and being hired to speak in countries such as Mexico, Australia or the US. It was simple, I just did one thing, being and remaining human on the Internet.

– The new thing It’s about people: When we launch an online strategy we must look at people, feelings and behaviors and not figures, numbers or stats. Everybody wants to make a quick sale and leave, that’s not how it’s working today. First we must connect creating resonance and then building a relationship based on trust, care, credibility and commitment, then people will not only buy from you, but they will also tell their friends that they should buy from you.

– Human Business rather than Social Business: Businesses are not people and people are not businesses. When we work in projects as for example we worked on Amnesia Ibiza, we don’t focus on the transactions – they happen eventually – we focus in how people interact with the people who is making the engagement and most importantly we focus on how people react when is in the club, then then only thing we do is connecting with them in persona and using the social platforms to take them where they want.

– Electrify the interaction: When you interact with people, connectiveness should arise. The best way to make this happen is giving total freedom to your staff to connect. Guidelines are ok, but are ok just for platforms and tools procedures, no human interactions, don’t be a robot.

– Human simplicity: Look at IBM, Apple, Google, Zappos or Starbucks, they keep connection and interaction simple, accessible and authentic because they know that this is the key.

– Human Branding: Brands such as Coca-Cola show and demonstrate how a brand can be humanized. The emphasis on values and feelings such as happiness, nostalgia, joy…not only this, but they share their successes as well as their failures, which undoubtedly fosters community and makes them more human and appealing.

– Human Leader: I spend more than 60% of my time interacting with people, answering emails, responding tweets, connecting and expanding relations on linkedin, commenting on other blogs, also answering comments on my blog, through Google + and of course, taking the relationship to the real world. The more I interact and connect with people, the more “lucky” I am. I confident for going throughout the 70%.

Thoughts? Do you have more Human Media practices to add?

Photo credit: ChristIAM blog.

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Human Media Fundamentals

Now it’s time for everything to be placed on a map and coherently drawn – thank you Luis Calabuig. These are the Human Media Fundamentals, the concepts which define the way to a new form of communication, one that represents the end of the Social era in its pure state of art.

Human Media goes deeper than 3.0 and makes it possible for a company to offer products or services that meet the clients’ expectations. How? Simply because the clients realize that they have someone to connect with at the other end of the channel, they find common means to communicate and be listened to.

This is your opportunity to connect people and communities, build relationships, generate loyalty and be involved in human interactions, all this on the base of gaining great relevance and reach. Doesn’t that sound brilliant?

First of all, let’s define the fundamentals of Human Media. There are 10 fundamentals, which most of the times are interrelated, complement or support each other. They are presented in a chronological order, so as for you to easily identify the relationships between them.

The Human Media Fundamentals

human media fundamentals - isra garcia - odosdesign

Social Media…

…is the root of Human Media. This might look like a reversed process, a paradox, as it is generally known that social communications should derive from human interactions. Maybe this has been the mistake: using technology and social media means of communication to select, categorize and label communities. The connection should be made based on human values.

Allow me to point out that when you listen, understand, respond, build relationships and connect emotionally, you are being human, not social. The social media challenge is take back to the human nature.

Disrupt Media

The interaction between Social Media and Human Media has started here and now. We live in an world of information overload and this saturation is already reaching the Social Media environment; not because there are too many people using it, but due to the way they are using it. The hype, the “social media experts”, “Community Manager Seniors” and other products saying “we-are-the-solution-to-all-your-problems” have transformed the opportunity to create connectivity into a “bla, bla” movement.  Noise, many messages sent in the same direction, intrusive messages, “non sexy” robots and predetermined users is what I call disruption media. The eruption of social media as sales pitches, with the wrong goals, which are artificial and strictly commercial have generated a new Social Media breach, which is what once happened to conventional marketing, only with this there is more awareness regarding the matter.

Welcome to the disruption era – this gives us the opportunity to make use of the new media to transmit our values, abilities, emotions and knowledge through the Internet. And this opportunity is Human Media.

The good news is that we’re no longer accepting these agents…what has taken them there won’t get them here, that I know for sure.

New Media

Human media wouldn’t be possible without New Media, which is revolving our everyday lives. As an example, we are almost not using the telephone anymore. Instead, we use Skype, Facebook, Twitter, Whatsapp, Google Plus, Foursquare, LinkedIn, in different ways for different reasons.

The New Media is more than an evolved type of communication, as it’s located at the connection point between people and information/innovation technologies. I can’t call it the revolution of communication either, even though it has broken most of the traditional broadcast models – can’t even mention the TV, newspapers or radio here, as they are not a means of communication. How could they be, given that they never facilitate an interaction, feedback or any type of expression rights from the message recipient? New Media is the re-evolution, as it is an evolution that has revolutionized the ways of communicating both between people and businesses.

New Media converts us into authors, publishers, protagonists, leaders, affiliates, connectors and information exchange points. New Media offers us a blank sheet where we can draw the lines of our personal brand, the way we want to communicate and market our company, the business strategy of our Startup or the actions that will take our small business over to the next year. New Media is only showing us that everything we do depends on us.

Human Conceptualization

We are now thriving to make every interaction as human as possible. The key now is to stay human while still making use of the Internet. The human conceptualization of the processes helps us better understand the online platforms and tools in order to generate the WOW! effect. This is part of the Human Media strategy: create credibility, trust and resonance. By simply understanding the key concept – stay human – we will be able to create a fundamental change in the way we relate to other people within interactive environments.

Human Integration

This is the tactical part of Human Media, how to stop being a robot, advice, recommendations and experiences that will help you to emotionally connect.

Human Branding

The brands’ focus is radically changing, now brands are like us, act like us, dress-up, eat, criticize, complain, have fun and connect like we do. Nowadays, brands are more human than ever, they undertake a process called Human Branding. This is translated into a new type of communication: Human Media.

The human side of brands will be soon reaching a tipping point: we’ll stop talking about brands, but people, feelings, emotions, histories and abilities.

Businesses have finally understood who are their most valuable assets: the people. This is why their efforts are concentrated towards generating positive emotions, both internally and externally.

In the case of companies, the way to integrate this change into their business model is called Human Business. In order to be able to interact through Human Media, the way of connecting/thinking/functioning must suffer a great change. It’s something imminent, though you are welcome to simply stick to your Social Media strategy and only change when you have no remedy left; though it will then cost you more time, money and effort.

Human Leader

This concept refers to all the people who use the web in order to add a human touch to their business and lead communities with transparency, honesty, resonance, charisma and authentic relationships. Human Leaders (HL) understand the importance of this change and use it to build a sustainable future.

The HL inspires and leads through the web. He’s not a robot, he’s a vivid human being.

We’re basing this idea on years of experience as hybrids made of analogic and digital components, combined with the understanding of the people and the business. We can tell you how and what to do, but you would still need to make an effort to apply the formula to your business.

We’ve discovered that people who understand how to build relationships through the Social Web, know how to make businesses work by using the same knowledge.

The Human Ecosystem

This is where the inertia comes into action. The Human Ecosystem is aiming to create an area of relationships and human interactions on the web, taking advantage of the resources, benefits, peculiarities and profiles of each participant.

– Channels: PPC, SEO, SEM, SMM, SMO, SM, Web Development, Design, Innovation, Community, Tech, Entrepreneurship, New Media…

– Platforms: Twitter, Soundcloud, Foursquare, SCVNGR, LinkedIn, WordPress, Google +, GetGlue, Yelp, Stumble Upon, Slideshare, Ustream, Flickr…

– Tools: Workflowy, Timely, Scoop It!, Storify, Badgeville, Let’s Lunch, Prezi, Skype, Flowtown, TrackUR, Posterous, claim.io, Social sharing, Radian 6…

– APPs: Boxcar, Evernote, Instagram, Bump, Whatsapp, Latitude, LiveShare, Notepad, Pulse, Google APPs…

– Media: Online and Offline. Precisely, this is the way: interconnecting both realities.

Human Business Interactions

The process of creating interactive bridges between people and brands as a result of taking the online warmth to the offline relationships also works the other way round: the business model based on emotional touch points. The Human Business interactions make use of all the Social Media resources (Human Ecosystem: channels, media, platforms and tools) in order to apply the emotional side of relationships on to the business framework.

This is one of the most important Human Media fundamentals, the way that Internet is backing-up the human relationships in order to generate business opportunities.

Your mileage could be different

These are the Human Media fundamentals, where human interactions, people, Internet and businesses start to make sense. I am confident that the concept will build-up, expand, generate ne concepts, but still, this is where it starts from. Some of the fundamentals might be useful to you, some not. Don’t worry, we are in a permanently reinventing state, take advantage of it.

Human Media is the way to understand how people make use of the information technology and interact on the Social Web.

Why wait for someone to award you permission? Implement Human Media into your strategy today, simply do it. [Read more…]

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