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Brian Solis

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Brian Solis, a self-described “digital analyst, anthropologist and futurist,” has produced research and theories that are revolutionizing the public relations and marketing industries. Producing books, papers, blogs, podcasts and speeches with seemingly limitless energy, Solis’ work emphasizes the dire importance for marketers, spokesmen and companies to effectively engage consumers through social media.

Solis’ career of using technology in public relations began in the early 1990s when he started working with early blogs, message boards and online communities. In 1999, after working in or managing several agencies, he founded his own digital and social media agency FutureWorks. Representing companies ranging from new startups to mainstream brands, Solis established the company to build relationships with consumers through aggressive and daily use of social media.

In 2008, Solis both developed “The Conversation Prism” – a graphic of online conversations charting media users and the various networks they’re on – and founded BuzzGain, which offered an application to effectively engage with media and social media professionals to promote brands. In the coming years, Solis created additional graphics exploring dialogues on social media.

Solis joined The Altimeter Group in 2011 as principal analyst. In that role, he studies digital media and disruptive technology, advising businesses on how to adapt and use digital media to form stronger connections with customers. He is the author of four books, frequently writes blogs, columns and research papers, hosts a YouTube video-interview series called “Revolution,” and crisscrosses the world on various speaking engagements.

Companies and Investments

Altimeter Group (Principal Analyst), BuzzGain (Founder), FutureWorks (Founder)

Lessons Learned

Working in marketing in the 90s it was clear that digital was going to have a huge impact on business and marketing strategies. New landscapes were being created. I was working for a big Japanese brand that was breaking into the U.S. market with digital cameras when film was still the most popular choice. For the first time, I was engaging in the world of forums, communities, message boards, seeing the first glimpse of blogs and I realized that as a classical marketer looking into digital world, I was ill prepared.

Unfortunately, I see many PR pros and marketers trying to take their prior experience and apply it to this digital world. The future of our careers and our role in both the revolution and evolution is to start with an open mind to see what’s different, to see how things have changed. And then develop strategies that move us in new directions.


Inspiring Quotes

It is not the strongest of the species that survives, nor the most intelligent, but the one most responsive to change.

Charles Darwin

Everyone thinks of changing the world, but no one thinks of changing himself.

Leo Tolstoy

Brian Solis's Quotes

Benchmark against best in class, not just the competition.

Brian Solis

Social media spark a revelation that we, the people, have a voice, and through the democratization of content and ideas we can once again unite around common passions, inspire movements, and ignite change.

Brian Solis

Each business is a victim of social Darwinism, the evolution of consumer behavior when society and technology evolve faster than the ability to exploit it. Digital Darwinism does not discriminate. Every business is threatened.

Brian Solis

The bottom line is that people are seeking answers and direction, not messages or sales pitches.

Brian Solis

When I think I know enough about a subject, I stop learning. Yet, the world continues to evolve without me.

Brian Solis

Influential Books

Jacob Morgan - The Future of Work: Attract New Talent, Build Better Leaders, and Create a Competitive Organization

John Jantsch - Duct Tape Selling: Think Like a Marketer—Sell Like a Superstar

Mentors

References


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