When I first started talking about Permission Marketing ten years ago, marketers asked, "sure, but how does this help us?"
A decade later, marketers look at Wikipedia or social media or the long tail or whatever trend is finally hitting them in the face and ask the same question.
Here’s the essential truth:
This is the first mass marketing medium ever that isn’t supported by ads.
If a newspaper, a radio station or a TV station doesn’t please advertisers, it disappears. It exists to make you (the marketer) happy.
That’s the reason the medium (and its rules) exist. To please the advertisers.
But the Net is different.
It wasn’t invented by business people, and it doesn’t exist to help your company make money.
It’s entirely possible it could be used that way, but it doesn’t owe you anything. The question to ask isn’t, "but how does this help me?" as if you have some sort of say in the matter. You don’t get a vote on whether Google succeeds or whether your customers erect spam filters.
The question to ask is, "how are people (the people I need to reach, interact with and tell stories to) going to use this new power and how can I help them achieve their goals?"