Monthly Archives: June 2009

Norms of Reciprocity

Social Marketing Doesn’t Rely on Social Media

Do you believe human beings share certain fundamental traits that define “being human”?

If so, do you believe that human beings tend to behave in certain ways under certain circumstances?

If so, do you then believe since human behavior has these tendencies, it can often be predicted?

If so, then do you think perhaps the study of Psychology and Sociology might provide you some clues to creating successful businesses, campaigns, products, and services?  While your friends and competitors are all iterating their way into oblivion?

On the web, time and time again, we see the same themes repeating.  Yet with each introduction of a new technology, these themes tend to be treated like a new discovery, even though the theme has been well established in the past.

Norms of Reciprocity is a constant human theme.  You may know the expression of these norms as “Sharing”.  Web old timers will probably recognize this idea as “Give, then Take” from the I-Sales discussion list as early as 1995.  In various forms, this theme goes back to the beginning of human history, all the way back to the handshake and other greeting gestures.  This same theme is embedded in countless Religions all over the world: “Do onto others as you would wish them do onto you”.  At least a couple centuries old, this idea.

Norms of Reciprocity simply means this: When you do something nice for a human being, help them in some way, this human tends to feel Gratitude towards “the doer” and tends to do something nice back.  Gratitude drives the desire to Reciprocate, because it’s just what humans do, it’s normal, a “norm”.

Norms of Reciprocity.

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Analyze, Not Justify

Does this issue affect the Web Analytics Maturity Model?

A conference call with a Potential Client last week jogged my memory on a couple of events that happened during the flurry of Web Analytics conferences this Spring.  Here’s a portion of the call…

PC: “We’ve tried proving the profitability of our Marketing efforts and can’t seem to get the numbers working correctly.  So Jim, what we’d like you to do is take all this data we have, and justify the Marketing decisions we’ve made by proving out the ROI.”

Jim: “I’m sorry, did you say justify?  To me, justify means “find a way to prove it works”.  Is that what you are asking me to do?  Wouldn’t it be more beneficial to analyze the results, and then optimize your Marketing based on these results?”

PC: “Jim, around here we’re pretty clear our Marketing works, and Management knows this.  But Finance is asking for some backup, some numbers to justify the spend, not to analyze it.  We don’t need analysis, we need your ‘expert credibility’ to help us out with this.”

Jim: “I see,” thinking this is not a job I’m going to enjoy.  It’s the old ‘buy an outside expert’ routine, which I detest.

PC: “Jim, the team is united behind this mission, are you on board?”

Jim: “Well, perhaps I could be on board, as long as what you want is an analysis, which may also justify the decisions you have made.  But it might not, so I just want to be clear on what…”

PC: “You  know what Jim?  I don’t feel we’re going to have a fit here, I’m getting you’re not a team player.  Thanks for your time”.  CLICK

Sigh.  I’m actually grateful they hung up, I really dislike explaining to people why I won’t work with them.

Continue reading Analyze, Not Justify

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