One Word: Change

Brian Solis

The only thing constant in this life is change.

A long standing catch phrase that reflects the truth in today’s communications for business.  Listen to what you are hearing around the groundswell of the internet.  You can’t keep up with all the changes!

The term Digital Darwinism was coined by Brian Solis.  It means the evolution of consumer behavior when society and technology evolve faster than your ability to adapt.

For businesses this is a crucial concept.  If your business thinks it can continue on the way it always has, you’re a victim of Digital Darwinism.  If you’re relying on a CEO that’s making decisions based on the way business has been done in the past with no eye to the future, there may be no future for you.  CEO’s are falling by the wayside like flies on the first cold day of the year.  (However, they fall with a golden parachute and go on to the speakers circuit to talk about the olden days. Good for them, not so good for the employees they’ve left behind.)

We are no longer in the olden days.  Businesses that won’t adapt, will die.  Invincible brands have been attacked by an internet loaded with kryptonite.  Sears and GM for example. GM tried to force Facebook to allow them to take over the home page ads, and Facebook (correctly) said no.  So GM pulled millions in advertising.  But guess what?  THEIR ADS SUCKED.  And not  only did GM’s ads suck, THEIR PRODUCTS SUCKED.  Fix your products people, no amount of social media will help a brand with bad products.

Best Buy has become the showroom for Amazon.  They don’t price match for online deals.  They don’t have places to be plugged in when in the store.  They are not flexible.  It will be their downfall.

There’s a secret that a lot of businesses are not using.  You’ve got to be connected to your consumer.  Don’t shout at them, don’t think they are stupid and will follow you like lemmings.  Communicate with them in their method of communication (mobile anyone?).  Consumers want magic.  It’s up to businesses to give them magic, to make them feel special and listened to.  It’s going to require change.

It’s no longer business as usual.  

(This post is the first in a series of notes from the Social: IRL presentation in Des Moines by Brian Solis.)


  1. Janice on June 8, 2012 at 2:16 pm

    You had me nodding my head in agreement til you go to the GM’s ads sucked and their cars suck. Then I looked quizically at the screen. Some of the GM ads have been awesome on TV & radio in the past couple of years and the design of their cars has improved greatly as well. They have been working on reliability, etc. Don’t get me wrong, I don’t drive one. However, some of the things they are doing with design, alternative fuels, etc have me thinking about it.

  2. deb on June 8, 2012 at 3:39 pm

    And really Janice — that’s a great step for them! Let’s hope they ‘get’ this conversation about creating a product that works for their customers and that rocks.

  3. Brian Solis on June 11, 2012 at 6:29 pm

    Great recap Deb. Thank you.

    Janice, GM is starting to rethink the customer experience, but it has a long way to go. Chrysler and Ford on the other hand are designing with the experience in mind and are much further along. Their work in social media is not terribly inspiring. Here’s a bit more…

  4. deb on June 11, 2012 at 10:50 pm

    Thanks Brian – always a pleasure to take notes from someone who makes sense!