Create more value than you Capture – Tim O’Reilly’s prescription for Publishing companies
A nice presentation from Tim O’Reilly on tips for using Twitter, delivered at O’Reilly’s Twitter Boot Camp in June 2009. Here it is:
First of all, I love the notion of “create more value than you capture. As far as I can tell, O’Reilly first publically used this phrase in this post where he said:
At O’Reilly, we always say “Create more value than you capture.” All successful companies do this. Once they start capturing more value than they create, their market position erodes, and someone displaces them. It may take a while but it happens eventually.
Secondly, there are several great quotes in O’Reilly’s presentation. First there’s basically O’Reilly’s definition of karma as applied to social media:
The secret of social media is that it’s not about you, your product, or your story. It’s about how you can add value to the communities that happen to include you. If you want to make a positive impact, forget about what you can get out of social media, and start thinking about what you can contribute. Not surprisingly, the more value you can create for your community, the more value they will create for you.
It would seem kind of obvious, wouldn’t it. But …
I also found the following quotes from the presentation interesting – which emphasize the role attention as filtering and promoting that which you value:
- In social networks, you gain and bestow status through those you associate with
- A key function of a publishing brand is the bestowal of status by what you pay attention to
- If you only pay attention to yourself, you aren’t as valuable to your community
What I found interesting about the above bullet points is the emphasis on bringing value to the discussions your community is having. I think this is a very different focus from that of a traditional newspaper/publishing company, which has traditionally focused more on communicating to their communities what the publisher felt they should be talking about.
I think the need to foster discussion amongst their communities is a realization that media companies generally have had for some time. But it’s not traditionally been in their DNA, and it remains to be seen how well they navigate this transition.
Of course, the real purpose of the presentation was to provide tips for using Twitter, where Twitter is positioned as a tool for sharing and promoting ideas and within one’s communities.
O’Reilly provides some specific tips for using Twitter at the end of his presentation. But for a more complete intro to using Twitter, please check out The Twitter Book, a book O’Reilly co-authored with Sarah Milstein.