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Passionate about investing

The Digital Age

4 July 2012

As we know the digital age has changed the way we do business and communicate in our everyday life, forever.  Reputation management (either personally or professionally) is no longer specifically related to an individual’s opinion and how many friends he or she tells face to face.  With the push of a button thousands of people can be reached, and whether the opinion is accurate or not we form our own opinions about that person or business, which affects every day decisions even if we recognize it or not.

If we take time to think for a minute – people today spend more hours on mobile devices than watching TV, mobile subscribers reach 5.3 billion (two thirds of the world’s population), internet users reach 2 billion (one third of the world’s population) and tablets are replacing PCs / laptops.  Add to this the fact that the middle class is expected to increase by 3 billion people in the next 20 years, whom are traveling more and can afford mobile social devices… I truly wonder what the future looks like, especially in the business environment.

I recently attended a tourism forum that included a session with a panel of students from 6 different countries.  The audience were able to ask questions and engage in conversation to help understand the Generation Y demographic better.  Most of the student’s answers revolved around having immediate access to social media and the role it played in their lives now (it’s almost as important as eating!!!).  More importantly, all of them said it was the single most important factor when traveling and deciding on a place to visit and possibly even work.  The Pacific Asia Travel Association CEO then stood up and asked how many of them had asked someone out on a date face to face, and to my complete shock none of them had.  For those that had actually been on dates, all of them had done so via social media….  So you’re asking how does this relate to Broadgate and the company’s direction.  Well that’s quite easy really.  We all know in business the world doesn’t work this way, and if I were to invest my hard earned money, I definitely wouldn’t do so without meeting someone face to face.  Even in my industry, 90% (if not more) of business that is done with our partners is done so because of personal relationships and the trust that is built over years of personally working together.  Companies like Broadgate engage in blogs to connect with their clients, and future clients for that matter, enabling everyone to get a feel for the people behind the business.  Now this can work for or against today’s companies depending on the audience, reach, engagement and subjects discussed.  I know of some businesses that now hire Online Reputation Managers just to keep up with this reality!

In a recent board meeting we discussed how our blogs add value to the readership, and we explored ways to add more value.  One of the most valuable lessons I learnt in my business journey so far was the importance of always understand what your customers want, then finding a way to deliver it time and time again.  So here’s where I reach out to you to ask you want you want to see more of in the Broadgate blogs.  Please do click the email address and give me your thoughts on what truly adds value to you from the team at Broadgate, and how can we better enhance our digital content to satisfy your needs?  clientservices@broadgatefinancial.com

I truly do value how the digital age has transformed how we interact, but we all do need to think carefully about what we say and how we manage digital space as it has ever lasting consequences (good and bad).

Last but by no means least, I wanted to share the following video with you all.  It’s a light hearted take on the social media world of today and I think a great way to end a topic that seems to dictate how we interact personally & professionally every day.

Love this! A spoof of social media start-ups from Vooza

Justin Malcolm

Non Executive Director

justinmalcolm@broadgatefinancial.com