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Rules For the Social Era - Nilofer Merchant. “This business model is right for a company selling Purina Dog Chow, circa 1970.”

Rules For the Social Era - Nilofer Merchant

“There’s no way we could ever be this collaborative.” Both are comments I got about my book, back in 2009, about setting direction, collaboratively. The first is from a Google executive; the second, from an exec at Cisco. Same business model architecture, two entirely different responses: obvious or unachievable. Facebook, KickStarter, Kiva, Twitter, and other companies thriving in the social era are operating by the rules of the Social Era. But too many major companies — Bank of America, Sony, Gap, Yahoo, Nokia — that need to get it, don’t. Like the rising temperature of the water the proverbial frog is sitting in, organizations are feeling the social era all around them, but failing to notice how significant a change it has produced.

You might notice that I have used the term social era. How does this work? Lean, not big. Conversations, not chains. Sharing, not telling. Desktop Factory: 3D Printers.

Outsourcing

Crowd Funding. Introducing The MakerBot Replicator™ EmailShare 900EmailShare January 10, 2012 (Brooklyn, NY) – MakerBot Industries is excited to announce the launch of its latest product, The MakerBot Replicator™, which will debut at CES in Las Vegas, NV on Tuesday, January 10th.

Introducing The MakerBot Replicator™

Available in the MakerBot store for pre-order today! The MakerBot Replicator™ is the ultimate personal 3D printer, with MakerBot Dualstrusion™ (2-color printing) and a bigger printing footprint, giving you the superpower to print things BIG! Assembled in Brooklyn by skilled technicians, the MakerBot Replicator™ is ready within minutes to start printing right out of the box. Starting at $1749, The MakerBot Replicator™ is an affordable, open source 3D printer that is compact enough to sit on your desktop. With a build envelope that’s roughly the size of a loaf of bread, The MakerBot Replicator™ gives you the power to go big. The MakerBot Replicator™ is ideal for personalized manufacturing, providing a new way to make the things you want and need. Social product development.

Why Porter's Model No Longer Works - Nilofer Merchant. Imagine that you wanted a new home theater system.

Why Porter's Model No Longer Works - Nilofer Merchant

But instead of spending hours in Best Buy or on Amazon comparing configurations and assembling the parts you needed, you could signal what you wanted and a company would create it for you. You might simply Pinterest the elements you liked, including information about your space or noise limitations (“One-bedroom apartment on busy street in New York,” or “suburban space that needs stuff protected from little kids”), and then have a retailer give you a personalized, optimal configuration. Right now, social is largely seen as a way to amplify messages (“Like” us on Facebook!) Or to create conversations around customer service (“We’re so sorry you’re having a problem,” the persistent tweet from @ComcastCares). These two key functions — Marketing and Service — are regularly discussed as shaped by social era dynamics. But the social era can — and will — be more than that.

Big Isn’t Enough Generic vs. Social Becomes Central to What We Build.