The Cluetrain Manifesto: The End of Business As Usual (Anglais) Cassette – décembre 2000
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" Most marketing campaigns are based on the fear that the market might see what's really going on isnide the company. Sound familiar? If it does then you've already come across the Cluetrain Manifesto...... If you haven't already then you should make it your business to do so.... Until big brands embrace more of the Cluetrain thinking, the anti-capitalist rioters might just have a point." Campaign, August 2001--Ce texte fait référence à l'édition Impression à la demande .
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Commentaires client les plus utiles sur Amazon.com (beta)
The authors are quite correct, and helpful, when they point out that in the aggregate, the combined preferences, insights, and purchasing power of all Web denizens is vastly more valuable and relevant to business decisions about production, quality, and services than any "push" marketing hype or engineering presumptions about what people might need.
Sadly, the authors' neither provide an integrated understanding of the true terrain over which the great conversation takes place, nor do they provide any substantive suggestions for how web content managers might improve our access to the knowledge and desires that are now buried within the web of babel. Their cute "tell a story" and equally cute advice to have big boxes for customer stories in the forms provided for input, simply do not cut it with me.
This book is a 5 for the one great idea, a 2 for beating the idea to death, a 3 for presentation, and a 4 overall because it was just good enough to keep me reading to the last page.
This book demonstrates how the Internet is bringing people back into the commercial process. Technology has frequently been perceived as dehumanizing our world. That's why it is especially ironic that it took a technological revolution in communication to bring back the human side of commerce. We are seeing a sea change where commerce is moving from a seller's market to a buyer's market.
Read this book. Pass it along to your boss. Give it to your employees and your customers. Buy copies for the heads of your engineering, marketing, manufacturing, corporate development, or whatever group. The brave new world is here, but Big Brother's not in charge. We are.
So finding the on-line Cluetrain Manifesto last year was a real pleasure. Here were these four guys with 95 wild-eyed idealistic theses for overthrowing the business world order--and setting up a new paradigm based upon (of all things) human interaction and conversation. I signed right up.
So you can imagine my delight when I found "The Cluetrain Manifesto" book had been published. I bought it in a millisecond.
Inside, you'll find the reflections of the Cluetrain's originators--in more detail, with more reflection than their Website provides. The Manifesto's background and philosophies are brought into a clearer focus--*not* crystal clear, mind you, but clearer than before. And it's a *very* enjoyable and provocative read.
It's not a flawless work. There's redundancy, for example, in the multiple essays within. Some chapters (Chapter 1 especially) are outstanding, others are so-so. One might even be called elementary. But there's always food for thought.
And don't expect to find some kind of "formula" or "strategy" or "plan" to prosper in the brave new world we live in. It's not there. In fact, such a plan, the authors remind us, would be *counter* to the Manifesto's assertion that honest human conversation is the key to success in the future.
But you will be stirred to find your voice and to add it to the voices of the revived marketplace called the Internet. Heck, you might even be inspired enough to try to help your company find *its* honest, human, authentic voice (rather than brochureware and doublespeak). And I think that's what would delight the Cluetrainers most.
This book is one of several that dramatically affected my life and career. I heartily recommend it!
Although I don't have an ecommerce site, the exhibitor's letter began, "By now you have had time to evaluate your Internet sales numbers from last quarter and hopefully you met and beat them." The letter was insulting by violating simple etiquette and unauthentic because it showed total ignorance of my business. The letter began "Dear David." Can't you hear Andy Rooney saying, "Does it ever bother you when people you've never met, and aren't sure you want to know call you by your first name right off the bat?" The letter writer thinks that using first names personalizes a letter. But first names are properly an acknowledgment of personhood. I'm not a person to that letter writer. I'm just a string of 0's and 1's in his database. I'm no more a real person to him than are website visitors analyzed by his company's personalization software. This company doesn't know what personalization is about. Its shtick is depersonalization, a corporate perversity The Cluetrain Manifesto rails against.
Cluetrain is the product of marketing specialists Rick Levine, Chris Locke, Doc Searles and David Weinberger who posted 95 theses on the virtual doors of the Internet, indicting the corporate world for exercising unforgivable arrogance in the marketplace, and suddenly were getting thousands of hits daily. Perseus Books quickly came up with a handsome offer for Cluetrain, the book. These putative Four Horsemen of the Internet Apocalypse that will lay flat the walls of the Old Economy declare that business no longer controls the marketplace. Their Sixth Thesis counsels "The Internet is enabling conversations among human beings that were simply not possible in the era of mass media," then business is warned by the Seventh Thesis: "Hyperlinks destroy hierarchy." Hierarchies rank people and restrict information flow because information access is a function of rank. Hyperlinks democratize information flow, nullifying the main offensive weapon that hierarchies depend on to remain hierarchies.
Most leaders in Old Economy hierarchies see the Internet as just a new product distribution channel. They don't realize that the Internet is a new conversation channel that greatly amplifies the voices in the marketplace. As Cluetrain's First Thesis states, "Markets are conversations."
If you're tenaciously anchored to the Old Economy, the First Thesis's real meaning might not click in at first. But work at it. Make it the opening topic of your next staff meeting. With persistence, you'll see what it means. Suddenly you'll find yourself at the gateway to a much different world, kind of like when Dorothy stood in the ordinariness of her tornado-tossed black and white Kansan house and first beheld the splendiferously colorful glory of Oz.
Cluetrain's authors are not wet-behind-the-ears webheads, but seasoned businessmen who grew tired of mass manipulation of people, and endless trickery, cajolery and even threats to get them to buy mass produced products thrust at them by generals of mass marketing in the "battle for their minds" as Al Reis and Jack Trout characterized marketing in a book called Marketing Warfare.
Here's a military metaphor for the clueless who still define marketing with military metaphors: Cluetrain's book jacket poses a question that penetrates the mind like a smart bomb burrowing into one of Saddam Hussein's subterranean bunkers: "What if the real power of the web lay not in the technology behind it, but in the profound changes it brings to the way people interact with business?"
Wow! There's a hint of Ted Kaczynski in that question, for as a society have we not become too obsessed with technology to see our humanity? Does this blinkered view make it easier for executives and managers to be as unaware of a receptionist's or entry level worker's humanity as the personalization company who wrote me that letter was of my humanity?
Cluetrain is written write with the ink of irony. Its authors aren't looking to start anything - no Naderesque foundation to squabble endlessly with corporations, no legally constituted organism to spread their message. All they want to do is to remind us all of our humanness in such a provocative manner that their lessons stick and grow to envelop the thinking of people who run companies and make marketing decisions.
Cluetrain's authors believe that as people regain an enlivened sense of their humanity through conversations made possible by the Internet, what ever is best that could happen will happen. They abhor the idea of shackling Cluetrain thoughts to a legal incarnation that would soon lose touch with humanity in order to promote itself and its leaders.
The Cluetrain Manifesto is a way of thinking that can lead businesses toward success in the unstructured environments of the Internet. Of course, many Old Economy business leaders want their Internet operations to have palpable structure like their bricks and mortar operations have, but they won't succeed. They are like Archimedes wistfully imagining that if only he had a place to stand he could move the earth. There is no place to stand for leveraging the Internet in ways that will give anyone control over its movements.
Cluetrain portends the end of control strategies in business. The Old Economy ethos of control is being replaced by a New Economy ethos of influence. This means The Cluetrain Manifesto instantly makes whole libraries of books on marketing obsolete because they are all based on an ethos of control and written from a vendor perspective. So empty your book shelves of all the covers you have on marketing and recycle them. That's their only value now. The Cluetrain Manifesto is the only book about markets that matters, because it is the first book on markets written from the consumer perspective. Buy it, read it, and be transformed!
David Wolfe Wolfe Resources Group Reston Virginia
I was surprised at the content, however. To me it was much less about how the Internet is changing the economoy and business, and more about how it is changing how people connect. Far beyond a clinical explanation (this is a Manifesto after all), it postulates about the changes this newfound, hyperlinked communication has made in employee, customer, and vendor expectations.
I happen to agree with almost every message. Down with empty happy-talk and command and control management...long live capability, knowledge, and real, heart-felt communication.
This book would certainly have received full marks from me had it been less repetitive.