My wife and I visited Istanbul a few years ago and met a very nice person who offered to take our photo in front of an ancient building. Afterward, he gave us a history lesson about the area we were visiting. He then invited us to his shop to look at some carpets.
Before we knew it, he was entertaining us with stories about the history of carpet making as a young boy pulled down stacks of carpets and displayed them one by one as we sat in comfortable chairs. The shopkeeper identified attributes, color combination and traditional design patterns with an enchanting story for each one.
After a while, the shopkeeper from next door walks in with a tray of hot tea as we continued learning about the carpets. A bit later, we all went across the street for a traditional Turkish snack and more tea. Then back to the shop for more carpet viewing.
Hey buddy, not so fast.
My wife and I decided to make a purchase but instead of taking our money, he took us back across the street to smoke the Hookah, sip real Turkish coffee and listen to live traditional musicians.
The whole process took many hours but it was like traveling in time. Istanbul has been the crossroads of commerce between two continents for thousands of years. We ended up paying too much money for the carpets – but to this day they are among our fondest memories and most prized possessions. They represent an indescribable experience in an exotic and comfortable setting. Now they look beautiful in our home.
It is human nature to trade. People want to do it. People want to meet other people. People want to learn. They want to share. People want to buy things and people want to sell things. They want to congregate. They want to travel. People want new experiences. They want to laugh, smile, sip tea, and listen to music. They want fond memories and beautiful carpets.
So why is monetizing social media so complicated? What is the big secret?
The transaction of conversation, relationship, and knowledge:
With social media, people are invited by friends, family, or associates to walk through an electronic door and into their inventory of relationships. Few people realize that this is a profound act of friendship, kindness, and trust. Think about it, people trust you with their relationships. How do we manage that?
However, neither party is fully aware of the conditions upon which the relationships present their self. The cultural infrastructure of introducing people, assisting in the exchange of conversation, and transaction of knowledge in social media is not established. The idea that a transaction can and should take place is not fully recognized. The introduction of the people to each other does not have a process, taxonomy, a location factor, or a time function.
Then again, social media has not been around for thousands of years
No buyer, no seller:
• If social media develops a culture of sales – it will fail.
• If social media develops a culture of buying – it will thrive for thousands of years.