by Josh Bernoff
Here is what you get with Seth: a mashup of massive quantities of common sense with a nice view of the future. There is so little common sense in visionaries, and so little vision in sensible people, that this is unique. Even moreso, it allows him to come up with a nearly endless series of "oh yeah" kind of insights on his blog.
Now the fun part about this is you have to renew it every year or two, so he can come out with a new book every year or two. This time it's Meatball Sundae.
Seth ran down (no kidding) 14 trends that people need to know about now. They include things like direct communication between producers and consumers, amplification of individuals' voices, short attention spans, the long tail, and the shift from How Many to Who as the important question for marketers.
Listed out like that, these seem like platitudes. But what's available from Seth is all this stuff in a nice package that makes so much sense even a CEO can embrace it.
His main point, which is that grafting these new ideas onto an old-world thinking company doesn't work, is important. A meatball sundae is "the unfortunate result of mixing two good ideas." And having tried to evangelize these ideas within corporations, I have seen this over and over.
I think I know the cure. First they should probably get his book. (Ours won't be out until May).
And the second is to pick a small social project -- a blog, a presence on Facebook, a community -- and make it work. Successful projects spawn more, which creates change. And that is how to avoid ending up with a meatball sundae.