Social Media: TV Predicted its Popularity
77 days from now Business at the Speed of Now will be in all fine bookstores and available as an ebook. You can preorder it today on Amazon, Barnes and Noble, and 800ceoread.com.
While the logic of Mass Production enabled the affordability of many products, the television gave birth to an exciting new window into the world for the masses. Only if you lived in Berlin or Leipzig in 1936 and knew someone who owned one of the earliest televisions were you able to watch the first televised and infamous Berlin Olympic Games. Not until the 1950s were Americans no longer reliant on the newspaper’s still photos and the radio’s ability to transmit voice to see their president — television was commonplace. The human desire to peak into the private lives of others — a harbinger of our love of social media – made televisions shows from Father Knows Best and Leave it to Beaver on to today’s Dancing With the Stars and Survivor.
The affordability of television was made possible by mass production management techniques, perfecting the products and driving down cost and up quality. Television more than anything, created a platform for common human experience as we all thrilled on Sunday night over The Beatles appearing on the Ed Sullivan Show and trembled together watching the World Trade Center Towers collapse on live television in 2001. Whether as Trekkies, ESPN couch potatoes or reality TV addicts (American’s spend 1/3 of their free time watching television and 67 percent of that is on reality shows), we hunger for something missing in our boring lives and hope to somehow experience it vicariously watching others.
Reality television is life at the speed of now, watching people face the daunting challenges of everything from losing a 200 pounds to trying to get along in a house or on an island with a bunch of strange and often odd people.
The phenomenal adoption rate of social media should surprise no one, when you think a bit about our love for the intimate details of some else’s life!
Today nearly half of Americans are members of some on-line social network and 30 percent of these users access some social tool several times a day.
We are social creatures, and the revolution that is coming, is when these tools become commonplace INSIDE our organizations. Today many executives see social media as rather strange and a dangerous waste of time and energy, but once they begin to see how to harness their power inside the organization, social media will become the power tool of great leaders in the decade ahead.
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