Innovate or Die

. Wednesday, February 11, 2009
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I am constantly writing about how the internet has revolutionized so many things. From electoral campaigns to the way we communicate with others. The internet has changed the game in every aspect of our lives.

Unfortunately some people decide to fight this revolution, and it becomes quite obvious that they are fighting a losing battle. Usually the reason they fight the internet, is because they don't know how to use it. They are scared of losing control and the negative affects it may bring their brand. The problem is that by fighting the internet, your brand receives more negative attention then if you had embraced it.

For Example: If you read the Vancouver Metro newspaper today, you would have read that a BC Transit bus driver was fired for having a blog. The blog chronicled his daily activities of being a bus driver in Vancouver. He said he started the blog because his family was interested in what an average day was like for him. Eventually his blog started to get more traffic, as more and more people were interested in the same topic. His blog was even linked to from the official BC Transit blog.

*Note: His blog was rarely negative towards BC Transit. In fact he often empathized with the company in when it came to poor bus service during bad weather.

How cool is that. Your employee takes the time to write a blog about working for your company. There are so many ways BC Transit could have utilized this blog.
Here are a few.
-Free advertising for hiring bus drivers
-A great feedback mechanism for ways to improve and to recognize what they are doing well
-Free advertising for the joys of taking the bus
-Build company moral

But instead they chose to fight it.
This is a perfect example of a company who is scared. They are scared of losing control and having proactive employees market the company. After all this employee is not paid to be a marketer, he is not restrained by any contract saying he can't say and do certain things, he is free to write whatever he likes. This is why personal blogs are so affective! People trust them.

When MarketR sets up Twitter accounts for companies, we make sure to set up a company account and personal accounts. Guess which accounts are more successful. Who wants to listen to the candy coated jargon a company spits out?

I love public transit. I think it is our responsibility to take public transit whenever possible. I do not like the company BC Transit.

The strategy to fight the internet has caused many more people to dislike BC Transit. Check out this forum about the incident. Now BC Transit has got people on other sites, that they have no control over, talking about how wrong the company is. They have got forums discussing the topic and how it was wrongful dismissal. Even worse they had over 100,000 people reading a front page story about the event.

Now they have something to fear. Why would anyone want to work for a company that mistreats their employees.

If you fight the internet, or put your head in the sand and pretend it doesn't exist, you will lose! I have seen it happen so many times, and it is not pretty.

If you have trouble embracing change, don't call MarketR, because we are change. Instead read the book, Who Moved My Cheese.