Five Mistakes that Derail Your New Business Efforts

New business development will make or break your business. And agency owners often find themselves suffering a famine or a feast of new business. But there are some common mistakes that can be relatively easily overcome. The Agency Management Institute has a great presentation on this topic, with FIVE clear tips that will help you avoid new business mistakes. And if you want to go into more detail, listen in to their fantastic podcast with Lee McKnight on the subject of new business development.

Age of Conversation 3: From Social Media Theory to Social Media Practice

We have seen an incredible shift in the role of social media over the past three years. It has moved from an outlier in the marketing mix to one of the strategic pillars of any corporate marketing or branding exercise: 
— Drew McLellan.


Three years ago, I began a conversation with Drew McLellan on the topic of social media and crowdsourcing. Thousands of book sales and downloads, two editions and hundreds of collaborators later, we are pleased to announce that the Age of Conversation 3 is now available.

It all started when Drew blogged about a similar collaborative book effort and I suggested we get a few fellow bloggers to produce a marketing book in the same vain. Three emails later, and we had named the book and set what we thought would be an impossible goal: 100 bloggers. Within seven days we had commitments from 103 authors from over a dozen countries.

Back then, the marketing industry was abuzz about how citizen marketers were changing the landscape, whereas the second two editions have revolved primarily around the growing field of social media and how its methodologies have affected marketing as a whole. What all three books have in common is that they each capture a uniquely global vantage point.

The first Age of Conversation raised nearly $15,000 for Variety, the international children's charity, and the Age of Conversation 2 raised a further $10,000 for Variety. This year’s proceeds will be donated to an international children’s charity of the authors’ choosing.

It’s available in a sexy hardcover, softcover and even a Kindle version.

As the many authors of this new book explain, the focus may be on conversation, but you can’t participate in a conversation from the sidelines. It’s all about participation. And this book provides you with 171 lessons in this new art.

Get the inside running on how you turn social media theory into practice with the Age of Conversation 3 – it’s essential reading.

Calling all Authors – It’s the Age of Conversation 3

Please come in.Back in 2007 it was a struggle to explain to people what “blogging” was all about. At dinner parties, people would grill me about blogging, about its relevance to business and about the weirdness of writing for a handful of readers. So when Drew McLellan and I decided to try and pull together 100 of the world’s most thoughtful and articulate marketers to share their experiences (both professional and individual) about blogging, we didn’t know what to expect. Could we REALLY turn it into a book?What would the content be like? How many people would actually DELIVER their chapters? How would the book be received?

Well, it’s over two years later. The book that we published, The Age of Conversation, spurned a follow-up edition, The Age of Conversation 2: Why Don’t They Get It. We grew the author base from 100 to 237. We were mentioned in the press and on blogs around the world, and even made the reading list for undergraduate marketing courses across the US. In the process, we raised well over $20,000 for charity (all proceeds from the first two books were donated to Variety the Children’s Charity).

Age of Conversation 2Much has changed in the last two years. New platforms, tools and approaches have been tried. Some remain, many have fallen by the wayside. Businesses, public and private organisations and Not For Profits of all shapes and sizes are dipping their toes into the conversational water; agencies and independent consultants are wading in (some taking the full body immersion option); and together – often in spite of our best practices and efforts – we are ALL learning that there is much more to “social media” and its impacts than we could have first imagined.

Sure there are some success stories, but we are a long way from consensus.

It is in this landscape that we are launching a call for authors for a NEW collaborative book – The Age of Conversation 3. The approach remains the same as the previous editions. Each author will be able to submit one 400 word article. To make sure the content is varied and to avoid repetition, we've created 10 section topics. Each author will select one topic and then direct the content of their submission accordingly. There will be a maximum of 30 authors per section.

The sections you can write for are:  

  1. Conversational Branding
  2. Influence
  3. Getting to Work
  4. Corporate Conversations
  5. Measurement
  6. In the Boardroom
  7. Pitching Social Media
  8. Innovation and Execution
  9. Identities, Friends and Trusted Strangers
  10. Conversation at the Coalface (If you work at the coalface, you deal with the real problems and issues, rather than sitting in a office discussing things in a detached way.)

As you have probably figured out, we are capping participation at a maximum of 300 authors. So if you want to join what has become a global publishing event, you will need to MOVE FAST. You can sign up HERE.

What’s in it for you?

Your contribution to The Age of Conversation places you in esteemed company. Many of our past collaborators are well known authors in their own right, are respected thought leaders in a range of fields (from marketing through NFP, within the enterprise, in education and as business leaders) or distinguish themselves as community leaders in other ways.

Your article will appear in what we think will be one of the must-read books of 2010. If you have not been published before, this is your chance to collaborate on a business book with a global audience. There will be link love (to your blog or website), there will be opportunities to raise your profile via podcast, interviews and even book readings – and you will be raising money for a worthwhile charity.

In return, you will be asked to sign an author release:

  1. The author release will bind you to promoting the book on your blog, Twitter and other social tools. If you cannot commit to helping us promote the book, please don’t ask to participate.
  2. You handover your rights to your article and in return we will donate all proceeds to charity.
  3. This time, we are going to let the authors vote on the charity that will receive the proceeds (with some help from Beth Kanter)
  4. You commit to submitting your entry by November 1, 2009.

Wait! Hasn’t it all been said already?

At the time of the first Age of Conversation, Todd Andrlik’s Power 150 list of social media and marketing blogs really only had 150 entries. These days, now under the auspices of Charlie Moran at Ad Age, the Power 150 boasts over 1000 entries. Not only are MORE blogs being created, more writers are emerging with unique perspectives and new insights. There has never been a better time to be part of this global conversation. What are you waiting for? SIGN UP HERE.