Communications are a currency of exchange for producing something valuable. The value of effective communications is an engagement which propagates learning. Learning begets knowledge that we can apply to solving problems. Problems solved represent increased productivity. Productivity adds value to any economy.
Social currency represents a communications exchange relevant to relationships we have or develop. Some people and organizations treat these exchanges like toilet paper.
Evaluating Social Currency
Social currency is information shared which encourages further social encounters and exchanges. It is a significant factor for any business . People talking and sharing things is a form of social currency that draws attention and attraction to the things or person being discussed. People feel the need to learn about things, people and businesses to help and become part of social interaction. However people can easily move to a new topic or person quickly if a new topic, business or person offers more social currency.
What is completely new or unique within the human exchange about things, people and businesses are the reach and influence by the masses of people vs. mass media. The new dynamic brought on by all things social is forcing traditional mass media outlets and programs to try to create content that people will use as social currency. People choose an action based on the context of relevant content to create social currency. The actions generated from social currency then influences the behavior of people who ultimately create multiple forms of transactional value, economic, social, political and spiritual.
Fame provides the person, organization and groups with social currency, where a poor reputation deprived them of it. Fame is when a large market of “people” recognize someone, a topic or a business as a result of mass awareness fueled by people, one to one to millions. Social currency becomes significantly valuable when the accompanying fame has a strong affinity and influence on a “mass of people” and their relevant behavior. Social currency transforms information into knowledge which is traded, acted upon and used to create or reduce value, capital.
Wasting vs. Improving Social Currency
As organizations and people engage using social media a critical factor is whether the use of it improves or waste an exchanges of value, information and knowledge. Value exchanges carry relational attributes where people consider the exchange worthy of their time and attention. Traditional marketing, advertising and PR tactics have historically been used to “grab people’s time and attention” without considering the relational value wasted or improved, social currency. The internet has now enabled the “mass of people” to create relational value and reject media not focused on relevant value exchanges.
Those that will and are winning the most value are those creating and giving the most value. The relevant social currency being exchanged is the result of distributed value received and then shared, one to one to millions. The obsession with getting economic gain through social media reflects a focus on an end result. Said focus misses the relevant “production processes” that create results. An economic gain is the result of knowing (knowledge) and understanding (wisdom) social currency.
The word “social” means attitudes, orientations, or behaviors which take the interests, intentions, or needs of other people into account. The word “currency” means an acceptable means of exchange of value. The result of producing anything represents a gain or lose of value for people. All of these results creates or destroys more value than money but money, or lack thereof, may be the medium of measure indicating an end result.
No one likes wasting time or money. Spend both wisely and the return from the human network creates more than expected. Think differently and provide value then results comes naturally.