Reading: Spotlight on New Media in Harvard Business Review

I headed to O`ahu the day before Thanksgiving to see my Mom, Auntie Linda, and her husband Uncle Chuck. One of my favorite things about flying is getting the chance to buy and read a whole bunch of magazines. Yes, young people still read magazines at least when I am on a plane I do. Hudson News is a great place to kill twenty or thirty minutes sifting through the racks and picking out a few eye catching periodicals. Usually the Harvard Business Review does not make it with me to the check out counter with its $16 price tag, but the December 2010 issue boasted an eye-catching cover spotlighting “Social Media and the New Rules of Branding”. Given that I am doing leading a board retreat for a non-profit group early next month called the Asian Pacific Policy and Planning Council, which I will be posting more about next month, I felt the cost was justifiable.

The spotlight section in the magazine consisted of four articles on the subject, and there was one additional article in the front of the magazine by Brian J. Dunn, CEO of electronics retailer Best Buy and how he has learned to love social media.

The articles in the spotlight section were thought provoking and full of case studies and examples of how social media plays into branding and communications in for profit businesses. However, the article I will be recommending to my non-profit clients is that of the Best Buy CEO, because his article chronicles how he has worked through many of the things that make many non-profits and other social media newbies uneasy. He has been using social media for the last five years and as the public social media voice for Best Buy he has seen it all from getting hacked to drama over a profanity laced employee created video but ultimately he concludes “The reality is that social media are where the national conversation are taking place today – and either you’re a part of that conversation or not. “

Recommended Reading: How I Did It: Best Buy’s CEO on Learning to Love Social Media

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