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yb+ys season 1: episode 7

Community Mgmt + Brand Love

with Christina Garnett

Senior Marketing Manager

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In this episode, we talk with Christina about spreading 'the love' across the #MarketingTwitter community; how to build brand love in your own communities; and what brands have 'killed it' and 'failed it' at community management.

About Our Guest

Former teacher, Christina Garnett works with Fortune 500 brands to strengthen their digital strategy. Inbound marketing and audience intelligence are at the heart of her work. As a community builder, she has a deep love for audience research and social listening; believing that to truly understand your audience, you need to listen to them deeply.

Season 1: Episode 7

podcast transcripts

0:53 Megan Ingram (MI): Christina Garnett joins the podcast this week. She works with Fortune 500 brands to strengthen their digital strategy and is a community builder and strategist. She has a deep love for audience research and social listening. Believing that to truly understand your audience, you need to listen to them. This week, we discuss how she spread the love in the #MarketingTwitter community, how you can build brand love in your own communities, and what brands have “killed it” and “failed it” at community management. How's it going today, Christina? 

1:19 Christina Garnett (CG): Things are good. Thanks for having me. 

1:20 MI: Yeah, it's really great to have you. So to start, obviously I'm a big fan of the #MarketingTwitter community that you've grown over, especially over the last three to six months. And you've done an amazing job at building that. What inspired you to cultivate and spread the word about this great marketing community? 

1:38 CG: Absolutely. So 2020 was a tough year for all of us in the marketing industry, everybody, really, even if you're inside that realm, outside that realm. And during that time, I was able to connect with a lot of really fantastic marketers and not just because they were knowledgeable, but because they were seeing the same struggles that I was seeing and the community at large became very unapologetic about what was actually happening. So instead of just acting like everything was great, there were more conversations about burnout, more conversations about struggling, not having the resources you need. Always having to be on, always having to be plugged in and social media being a really toxic place. And I even wrote a couple of articles talking about how social media managers were going to survive 2020, because we couldn't escape. We literally were being paid to be there and to see all these toxic trends. And I saw it continue to grow. I mean, you had Julian's tweet in February 2020 talking about if you work on a brand account and you've always wanted to reach out and connect with someone else and another brand account, let's see if we can make some connections. So that really started to bridge a lot of the relationships that we’re starting to grow now. So I just woke up one morning and my feed was just my friends. It was just all of these marketers that I’d grown to love and be protective of. And I wanted them to have a good day and knew that they were walking remotely into the same kind of stuff I was walking into. I just wanted them to feel better. And I also wanted other people to have this because 2020, the feed was extremely toxic. And it was easier to want to walk away than to curate. And how do you even curate something that just feels like one catastrophe, one breaking news headline after the other? And so I shared that. Who's really missing? Who would need an invitation to really kind of open up and connect with others. And that's why I put in a thousand followers or less. Because marketers are the first people to say that your follower count is a vanity metric. And yet we are all crawling for the next benchmark. We can't wait for the next rung in the ladder, so to speak. And there's plenty of people who work for amazing brands and do incredible work, but because they either don't have time or just never really saw the need and they're brand new to using Twitter, or they have no entry point, they just don't have the follower count that other people have. And it's no reflection on their ability as a marketer, but it feels like it is. They feel like- I only have 23 followers. I only have 400 followers. I'm a nobody here. No one's going to listen to me. No one's gonna take me seriously here. So by saying if you're a smaller account here, we want to get to know you. Let's make friends. Tell us more about you. What do you like to tweet about, what's important to you? What do you do? And not expecting anything to come of it. And then it really blew up, and in addition to just doing the tweet. I made a point to amplify everyone that responded that I saw, and I'm sure I missed a couple, cause there's 3-4,000 responses to it. But I tried to amplify it as much as I could. Twitter broke me twice that day. And then like once the next day, I guess I had bot energy. Cause it was like, girl, you can't tweet anymore today. So I actually had to reach out to a couple of Twitter friends. I was like, would you let them know? I'm still here? I'm not ignoring anyone. I literally can't do anymore, I couldn't even like a post at some point. I couldn't retweet or even like. You don't get to act on this account for a while. And because of that, because some people did go through the thread and connect with others and some people just saw what was coming in their feed. So if they were following me and I'm re-tweeting something, then they're going to see that we're still going to be like- I hear some new person I get to talk to. And hopefully, they like something that I like, or we both geek out on such and such. So it created a lot of new opportunities and it grew bigger than me, which is what any community should do, which it should start to manifest and grow on its own because of the connections- there's so much value added there that you have this sense of need. And because of everything that happened in 2020, and we're still seeing the carry over. There's been people working in the community for years. It's not something brand new, but because we found the dire need for connection. It finally became mainstream. And that's why you're seeing a lot of people talking about community nowadays that never would have. It's a buzzword now. And it never would have been a buzzword before. 

6:30 MI: Yeah, completely agree. And it's really cool to see some of the relationships and people connecting that probably wouldn't have if you hadn't gone through that effort to make people feel like they can talk about whatever they want to talk about is worth saying so it's really cool to see what those connections have done just within the community itself. You touched a little bit on community management, and community management is a big topic for me, but I couldn't agree more that it's something that is starting to be more and more of a buzzword. And you're seeing people talk a lot more about it, what does brand love and community management mean to you?

7:13 CG:  For me, it has to mean something more than what it's attached to. The community, even though you're building it, you don't really own it. Just like you can't own people. You can't own a community. You can foster it and grow it. It can live within your channels. It can live on your network, but you still have to foster and grow it. So I really think of it like a garden. You're going to plant seeds and you're going to foster it and make it grow. If you ignore it, it's going to die. And if something good or bad happens like bad weather, for example, that could definitely threaten what you're building there. And so community is a really long game. So a lot of the people who are talking about it are using it as a buzzword, when they realize that you have to make sure the soil is fertile, you have to make sure it has the nutrients that those specific plants need. You could have a really great plant, but if the soil isn't a good fit for that, it's not going to grow. Same thing with the community. You have to make sure that you understand what the needs of those people are. So you can make sure that your community that you're building has that. Because otherwise, you're just putting people on a Slack channel. That doesn't do anything. You have to make sure it creates value. And you have to make sure it's mutually beneficial. You have to make sure that the people in there are fostering conversations apart from you. If you have a community and you're the only one that’s starting conversation, that's a big red flag. You need to figure out who are the conversation starters, who are the curious people, who are the people who love amplifying others? Figure out who those archetypes are within that community so that you can leverage who they are as a strength. How can you position them in such a way that they become a champion for that community? And they help it grow with you. 

9:04 MI: Yeah, totally agree. I'm a really big believer in social listening. And I think a lot of stuff that you're talking about, especially- how do you identify those people? How do you identify who's going to be those conversation starters for you? A lot of that can also be learned through social listening. How do you think as marketers, we can better understand our audience and actually listen to what they're saying? 

9:30 CG: I'm a huge fan of social listening. It's one of my favorite things, because I'm curious, nosy, whatever you want to call it. I really believe that marketers are guessing. If they haven't taken the time to really understand their audience. As marketers, we have this unconscious bias where if we like something or we think something's a good idea that we just automatically assume that our target audience is going to feel the exact same way. I think it's brilliant. So you have so many failures in this space, because that is not reflective, unless you are a part of your target demographic, which most of us aren't. Or we are, but we're not in that specific skew of it. You're putting out things based on gut and marketers' guts are sometimes brilliant and you could take it to Vegas, but other times it's off because they're basing the success of something or the pre-success of something based on how they feel about it. And that's just not worth it. You need to understand who you're talking to, you need to have psychographics. You need to understand what a day in the life is and personas are great, but you have to dive deeper. You have to say- who are those people who are actually having those conversations? And especially with major events, like 2020, and how that changed. So many behaviors that changed where people live, that changed where people work, that changed where people ate, that changed how people traveled. It literally changed how you went to school. Like if your kids went to school, if you're a stay at home mom, if you're going to be doing homeschool. Now, if you're going to think about where you buy from, where you can't or where you don't. It changed so many fundamental industries across the board. And so you can make assumptions and you could get some of them right, but there were so many brands last year that you could tell weren't reading the room and they weren't reading the room because they literally weren't reading it. I am literally seeing these people talking about them and a lot of brands, because they might have a lot of notifications. They get pigeonholed. We're just going to look at the people who @ us; instead of the people who mentioned your brand, but there isn't an @. Or they're mentioning your product, but they're not mentioning your brand name or they're mentioning keywords specific to your product or service, but they're not @ it, you're missing so many conversations and that's honestly where the treasure is. Find out even natively. Like there's so many great social listening tools, but even natively just going in, Twitter's usually the easiest cause the API is so open, but just doing like a simple search to see who's talking about this. And what does that sentiment look like? Just being able to understand the importance of sentiment is so crucial for brands. And you're really missing a lot if you're just looking at your mentions, you're missing so much because a lot of times, you were only dealing with the extreme content. But they want you to see that they super, duper love you and they want you to exist or they super, duper hate you and they want you to acknowledge them and fix it. So you're dealing with these extremes. And these are the people who are gonna buy from you, no matter what you do or refuse to buy from you, no matter what you do. And the beauty of most businesses is that a lot of your money is in the center. Those are the people that are getting ignored. The people that are falling through the cracks, because you don't have a social listening plan in place. So I'm a huge fan of that. You need to make sure that you have processes in place. I’m a huge fan of that. I've written a couple blog articles on step-by-step instructions on how to start doing that. So just knowing that that's what you need to know, because think about their brands and that will pay an obscene amount of money for market research, but then won't do social listening. And it makes no sense cause there's the information you need. That's what you want. Or they'll have someone write something negative on a review site. And they're thinking- I never heard from this person, I wish that we had known before they sent their review and if they'd done the social listening, they would see that person. I complained two or three times, but just didn't @ them, just said the company by name, but there wasn't a mention of it. Didn't get paid for it. And so those breadcrumbs were there all along. So it's priceless, especially after 2020 - social listening is something that should be mandatory at this point. 

14:15 MI: Yeah. The other part of it too is the amount of events that actually happen. So in a moment, how are conversations being triggered and changing? And if you're not listening to that, especially in very sensitive moments, as we learned this year, you could be potentially making the wrong and a disastrous decision as a brand. 

14:34 CG: Oh, absolutely. And for example last year, there were certain individuals who could tweet about a brand and that brand had to go into “war rooms” automatically. Imagine if you had paid campaigns and this actually happened a lot of times last year, where you would have paid campaigns that were continuing to run. And what they would do is they'd be sandwiched between some of the worst news, updates and tweets and between them top and bottom. And so you have to think- when you're creating an ad, imagine the worst possible news sandwiching your ad. Cause a lot of them don't think about that. They're just like, this looks nice. This will convert. Here's how much I need to pay. And it's often to the universe and I'll just measure it and track it. No realizing that you have no control over it's actual literal placement in the feed. You can't say that it's going to be in between a bomb attack tweet versus like a celebrity scandal. You have no idea and there it lives. And how was that ad going to be perceived differently based on where they're seeing it, because it definitely impacts you. What you read and what you're seeing on a constant basis. It does influence you. So how does that change the success or the viability of an ad?

15:55 MI: Yeah, I totally agree. And I manage a lot of campaigns for paid media. And I can tell you how many times I would go to a client and be like- you should probably remove that, this isn't right for the right situation. I'd wait it out. And brands will pull back. Others just intend to go forward anyway. We highly recommend a pause and some would say yeah, ok we should pause. And others, they still wanted to run the spend. I want to talk a little bit more about the strategy side of things. What strategies and approaches have worked really well for you to help brands better understand their communities and build what I call authentic long lasting relationships? I'm a big believer in authentic community management. And just kind of wanna understand some approaches that you think have worked really well. 

16:50 CG:The first thing for businesses, especially coming from a strategic background, is that you need to understand what your goals are. A lot of the times where I see a business making errors is because they immediately jumped the gun. So you need to identify what questions you have. What's the business problem that we're trying to solve? Or what is the question that we're trying to answer? What are the goals? Just the foundation of what you even want to do is huge. And then deciding if depending on who you're working with, some of them are going to want to framework others are not. And some of them want a framework, they're gonna want a specific type of framework. And it's important if they have strategists that they're already working with, then ask if there's a specific framework that they have a preference for, because if you're picking something that they're not accustomed to or used to, it can definitely feel like you have great ideas, but it's almost too new because it's in a completely different frame of mind for them. So I would do that and then determine who's going to be working on the project. What are the deliverables going to be? What's the timeframe going to be? A lot of it is setting up the structure first. So to get started with strategy, you really need that foundation set up and you need to have a good understanding of what their goals are. And also, I understand that sales want… and revenues want... to come in there and make sure that if you ask them what their goal is, they're going to be like, “well, we want to increase leads. We want to increase sales.” Always money on it. But the more you work with people and the more you work with teams, and the more you might have to- and it's not really your job, but it creates a blocker for you. If you don't resolve it you need to make sure that you can get past the silos. You need to make sure like- Yes. I know you want leads. Yes. I know you want sales. Yes. I know you want conversions. Yes. I know you want clicks. Yes. I know you want organic reach, but what is the one thing that you can all guarantee- what's the one north star? Because chasing six different goals is going to be really hard. So having a north star and then prioritizing all of the goals from there and then how they align with each other, how one connects to each other. Are you connecting through a customer journey? Are you connecting through an ABM, account based marketing where sales and marketing really need to be more in tandem than they are in traditional settings? Doing that. And then the other problem with social listening is that it falls by the wayside really quickly because they’ll say “we want to use this tool and we're going to search for these keywords. Great. Now we're done.” That's just the beginning. Now you need to figure out who's going to be doing that work. Who's going to be deconstructing it? Who's going to be setting up the findings? What are those findings going to look like? Where are they going to live? Is it going to live in a spreadsheet? Is going to live in a Google doc? Who needs to have access? How often are you measuring? How often are you looking for trends? How often are you determining that something is a red flag or not? How often are you measuring sentiment? Positive, negative, or neutral? How often are you tracking that to see if there is a trend between social listening and your sales? So for example, let's say that your sales are dipping one day and you don't understand what's happening. And then you talk to the social listening team and they're like- “you have been dodging me off for like two days. It happens. People have been talking trash about your brand. I'm not surprised by the dip in sales.” So you need to be very clear, there needs to be transparency. There needs to be accountability about who owns what and what's getting measured. What gets measured, gets funded, and gets implemented. It's just what happens. So the strategy for me is how you are able to create that foundation. Make sure that if there are silos that you're able to get them to determine the north star, like what is the main question? What is the main goal? Align any other and prioritize any other needs or goals? And then set up accountability, set up a timeframe and structure, set smart goals, and make sure that you're following that path and how often you're reporting on it. How often you're doing feedback. I've created a lot of response matrices for brands where it's- if you get this question, this is the response. If you get this answer, this is the response. If you get this, this needs to be escalated. So that way you're able to have an idea of what's working and that just comes down to game theory. I'm a massive fan of game theory. And Dr. Strange, just what are literally all of the potential outcomes that could happen? You're sitting at your desk with a spreadsheet you're like- What is the meanest thing someone could say about this? What is the stupidest thing someone could say about this? What is the nicest thing? How would you respond to that? How do you know what to ignore? What not to ignore? How do you know what to escalate, not escalate, answer or not answer? And it's because you got to a point where I can literally see someone saying this. And so that goes a long way, but you don't know that if you don't understand your audience.

22:06 MI: Yeah, I totally agree. And I think the execution part is very important because I can't tell you how many brands that I've seen go through all the effort and work to do keyword research and digital insights and all this great stuff, but then it kind of just stops. And nothing comes of it. It's just sitting on a pile on a desk and they're not executing. They are not being accountable to it. And that's why they're not able to hit their goals because they’re not putting it into motion. Then they’re just insights.

22:36 CG: It's just a spreadsheet somewhere that no one's updated that no one owns. And no one knows when it was supposed to happen. And people are like- I don't remember, we were talking about that, but I don't know where that status is. It's heartbreaking because it's like, Oh, you started the car and then you just left it running in the parking lot. And it can't do anything, but it does eventually run out of gas. 

23:03 MI: So kind of expand on that point. How have you seen brands fail at creating community management?

23:08 CG: When they try to do it quickly. Community is a slow game. It's a slow burn. So if you are just creating a Slack channel or you're just creating a website or you're just creating something and you're just like, boom, here it is. Go. Of course you want to join this. That's not enough. Now for some. Oh, great. That sounds awesome. But that's going to be low hanging fruit. You're not going to be able to build anything more just from that. You're doing relationship marketing on a large scale. How do you invite people and make each person feel welcome and valuable on a scale that can grow into the tens of thousands and bigger? You're literally planting seeds with every interaction, whether you're white gloving people over by doing more than just an email, you're like personally reaching out to them to say hey, we have this new community, we know how much you talk about such and such here. We would love for you to do that with us over here. All the way up to an email campaign or strategies for helping migrate from previous communities to one central one. You have to be able to communicate value. It is not going to come from nothing. There has to be an understanding of if I join, this is what I get. So for #MarketingTwitter, for example, knew that if they responded that they were going to get to meet other people in the community. They knew that they were going to be welcomed. They knew that they were going to potentially gain followers. Some people, that's all they cared about. They're like- I gain followers and I'm happy. Others were like, I just need someone to talk to. And I didn't know that this was even a thing. Or I liked that we all amplify each other and hype each other up. We all have individual needs all over the place, but you need to be able to, if you're building a community, you need to be able to understand those. And just saying- here's a community. That's not enough. Brands need to really understand. It's going to take time. It's a slow burn. The people who are using it as a buzzword, we hope you understand how much time it takes. I hope you understand the work. It takes time. 

25:38 MI: It's definitely a lot of work. And I think sometimes people don't quite realize how much effort and energy really goes into building those conversations and building that raw, brand love, so to speak, that you see within these communities. Name a brand that you think is “killing it” right now with community management. 

26:04 CG: Peloton. Peloton is doing a great job. They're building it up to hiring someone for their community team right now, actually. But they have built-in gamification for groups. So for example, I do Saturday mornings, I do #MarketingTwitter Peloton, right at 10:00 AM Eastern time. And you get different badges for how many people that are in your friend group that are riding the same ride. And so I just got the swarm one, which is 20 of your friends all did the same ride. And if it's 10, it's different. If it's five, three, two to just yourself. So you have gamification, and it goes up, as you have more people joining. You also have the ability to be able to follow each other so you can follow each other. You can also be a part of hashtag groups. So you can see all the people in this group. And because the hashtags, you get to make them yourself. They're not all pre-programmed. You can choose one that already exists, but you can also make your own. So you can have it based on where you live, based on your favorite sports team, based on where you went to college, based on where you work, based on #MarketingTwitter, you could pick whatever hashtag you want to self identify with and you can do up to six. So the six different micro-communities that you self identify with, then you're able to ride with those people. But other people are able to see what micro communities you're a part of. So that's really fantastic. They have a couple of Facebook groups, I would say Peloton Moms is like a queen level micro-community. The Peloton Mom committee will take their earrings off in a heartbeat. They're very protective. They amplify each other, they hype each other up, they support each other during wins. They hype each other up when someone's not feeling right. You can do this, you've got this, go ahead. Like so powerful. And that's the thing. If a community is good, then everyone will feel amplified. Everyone will feel like even on their worst day, there's someone in that community that will raise their hand and be like- Hey guys, I'm having a tough one. They'd have a posse come to them and be like, what do you need? Who do I have to hit? What's going on? What do you need us to do? They know that they found their people, which is incredibly important. Especially when you have the ability to not go anywhere and you just feel like the sense of loneliness has been hard for a lot of people. Extroverts and introverts. And so Peloton has really seized on that by creating a space where you feel more empowered, to get on the bike or on the tread, or just do a meditation or something with the app, you feel more empowered to do that because you know that you have a built in support system and it's incredibly powerful.

29:15 MI: I think they have done a real good job. I actually used to be a Soul Cycle person and I got converted with them. 

29:20 CG: Yay, I love my Peloton people. 

29:26 MI: I was telling people, I bought a bike in January, pre COVID of 2020. I got mine in a week and now it's like, this insanely long wait times. But all the things you're talking about is why I really get into it. And I like it. They also have a really great community of instructors that I think do awesome stuff. And when you're talking about cycling, the instructors is such a huge element of that. 

29:56 CG: It really is. And I love the Instagram live’s that they'll do after. Kendall's really great about jumping on Instagram after one of hers. And you just get to see. It's nice because they all seem so lovely and hyped up on the bike. And you're just like- how are y'all still going? And how do you still believe in things? I'm dying. And then you see them on Instagram Live later, and you're like- this is actually how you are. You're actually just a really positive person. How is that possible? It’s really nice. It shows you that it's not this massive facade. 

30:28 MI: I totally agree. And they have done an incredible job, especially in an industry - I was actually working on a brand in the fitness industry. They're still very, very much struggling because that industry has been really, really crushed in general. So to see them kind of excelling with a model that really works in a time when pretty much everyone else in that industry is really, really struggling. It's been pretty cool. 

30:55 CG: It's the future of a lot of case studies. 

30:57 MI: For sure. It's like the exception to the rule, because I can tell you so many brands that are really, really struggling in that space to figure it out. To follow up on that, we talked a little bit about social listening. How would you suggest brands find and build brand ambassadors? Because I do think that's also a big part of the amplification process and getting people to what I say “rave” about you, but really being able to find your people so to speak. That really gets that message out there and amplifies what it is that you're trying to say.

31:36 CG: Absolutely. So I love brand ambassadors. I think it's really important. I've written a couple pieces on how to get that started, but the first thing is social listening. Find out the people who are already loving you naturally, who are your biggest fans? Who without any provocation, will recommend you. Let's say that there's a SAAS recommendation question on Twitter or Reddit and this person, if they see it, their first response is going to be I love so and so. Those are great brand ambassadors because when they do it for free, without provocation, then what they will do for you when you give them swag, when you let them have like a hashtag in their bio that says they're a part of you, when they get a page on your website that talks about how they're a brand ambassador for you, what you've done is you've taken a fan and you've elevated them into a super fan. So now they're turbocharged to talk about their love for you. And it makes sense with their content because they already talked about you. There's nothing worse than seeing brand ambassadors that are clearly doing it just because they’re your brand ambassador, but they would never talk about you, otherwise. It basically looks like an ad. It also needs to make sense for what their other content is. So for example, if you are a marketer and you're talking about a marketing product and you're always giving advice and tips, then if you start trying to be a brand ambassador for a sales platform, that may not be a good fit, because everyone's going to be like- you always talk about marketing. What is this sales stuff that you just randomly start talking about? And that's also the only sales stuff you talk about. It has to make sense with what they're currently doing. Adobe does an excellent job with brand ambassadors. They pick and have diverse choices. They have people from different backgrounds, whether they be graphic design, videographers, teachers, educators, like they've really picked core people who would also be users. And that also generates new users. And they'd put them in a position as Adobe Insiders to be able to be a part of a think tank. They get to see what new features are before they're released. They get to go to events and share their findings and what they love best about things. And because it makes sense with all of their other content, you see a fan becoming a super fan, not some random person with a high follower account, but just got plucked. That's the thing- I posted this couple days ago, that impact is more important than follower counts. If you have 20,000 followers, but I don't believe anything you say... What value does that create versus someone with 5,000 followers, but they're really smart and I love everything they write about and they think that this tool's awesome. I'm going to give it a try. That follower count has no strategic link to how much impact do you actually have. I'm a huge fan of micro influencers. People who are truly passionate, and you can see this on Twitter all the time. There are people with hundreds of thousands of followers and you will go to their profile and they'll have two likes on a tweet, four likes on a tweet. Some have nothing. And I'm just like, how?

34:55 MI: Yeah. I always say, especially when you're talking about influencer marketing, what is the resonance aspect of it? Where it's really, how much activity are you getting, right? Follower count is follower count. It's one variable, whether they should be part of whatever it may be. But like you're saying, are they being active in the community? Are they generating interest? Are they getting people excited and wanting to be involved? Because those things are so important. There's so many great micro communities out there that are doing great work in that space. One last question that I'll leave with is one trend that you believe will have a huge impact on community management and building brand love in 2021?

35:38 CG: It's going to be the further segmentation of communities we're seeing. We're seeing this already with Clubhouse and you have these micro communities that are there. It's already a micro community in itself because it's all the iOS people versus the Android. So it's already exclusionary. Twitter released in their investor calls. They're doing their own community, but what it's a segment based on topics. So you can choose whether I want this tweet to be in my community for dog lovers, or I want this tweet to be in my marketer thing. What you're seeing is the segmentation of these micro communities even farther, which is fine, but especially for Twitter, it's going to hurt because what you're saying is the beauty of Twitter is how open it is. And so by segmenting it further, what you're doing is you're taking away one of the most beautiful pieces of it. And people are gonna use that. In addition to that, you will now have super follows. So now people are going to monetize their accounts, which will then again, segment between the people who are willing to pay and aren't willing to pay. It’s extremely interesting for me because people complain about media paywalls all the time. Now we're going to pay for influencers. I can't think of anyone that I would actually pay to see their tweets. My thing is I hope it's the guys who stand in front of a printed Lamborghini. I hope they all monetize their accounts, clean my feed for me. I'm sure someone will pay for it, but I won't and I won't have to see it then. So that sounds great. But I think what you're seeing is this further segmentation. I’m already seeing this with the haves and the have nots. And what that's doing is for the sake of community, what we're doing, we're calling it community, but we're being extensively exclusive, which I really don't like. So we're calling something community, but we're doing the exact opposite of it. And so I think you're going to see more and more people trying to shift communities off of social media. Because I think you're finding that social media is taking away from those communities. You could have a Facebook page where your community gets to see updates, but now they don't see it because the reach is gone. So if you go to Facebook groups, but then most people aren't there anymore because they've deleted Facebook. You're seeing all of these shifts. So I think what we're going to continue to see is this just further segmentation until the community doesn't feel the same. And then you're either going to give up on it or you're going to hope that it can live somewhere else that you can control, like a Slack channel. 

38:26 MI: I was thinking about Salesforce and all the various things that can be going on in that world as well. 

38:33 CG: So I think you're going to continue to see this de-segmentation to the point where the community doesn't feel it. What they're doing is they're calling it communities but they are creating cliques and there's a difference. And so that's going to be a problem. The people who don't want to go to a clique and don't want to feel like they're in a lunchroom will hide like a public high school. They're going to say let me be with all the people with the opportunity to be within micro-communities or I don't want to be in it. I don't want to be in a clique. 

39:03 MI: Yeah, where you're basically choosing inclusivity versus exclusivity. You're making a choice, which one you'd rather be. And I totally agree, which is why I've kind of been rolling my eyes at some of these features that have been coming out as of late. I'm like, Hm, that's interesting. 

39:20 CG: Yeah. What's going to happen to you is that the people who tend to latch onto these things- and we saw this with Clubhouse. There's a reason why the first people who got it and the first conversations we started seeing like misogynistic behavior, we started seeing gatekeeping. Scarcity as a lever works, but it breeds exclusivity. It breeds bad behavior because by having access, you feel special and everyone else is “other.” It encourages bad behavior. And so until you start seeing Android versions rolling out, you're not going to have the diversity. You're not going to have the importance of different POV. You're literally not going to have it because you've chosen to roll out in such an exclusive way. And I understand from a growth perspective, it works, because you're creating FOMO. But FOMO only lasts so long. I'm not alone in this. I'm the kind of person like, if you don't want me, I don't want to be there. That's fine. I'll go. I'll go play somewhere else. That's how I am. 

40:33 MI: And I think that's an important thing because it isn't supposed to work for everyone, right? Picking your audience and picking your people so to speak is very important. You don't need to be everywhere. It's going to be really interesting. What's going to happen, especially in a time where you think the diversity of voices and amplification, all that stuff is at an all time high in terms of brands wanting to do those types of things.

41:00 CG: But I think what we're going to see is a lot of brands are “saying” they want to do this. I always wait for receipts. Because that really tells you- there's a lot of people and a lot of brands and a lot of social networks even, that have said they want to be inclusive and they want to do this and they want to do that. And then their behavior speaks otherwise. You're saying you're going to do this, but when I look at your actions, it's a completely different narrative and that's not good optics at best. 

41:31 MI: Yeah, totally agree. Well, it was so great having you on the show today, really great chatting with you. Where can listeners find you? 

41:40 CG: I am @thatChristinaG on Instagram and Twitter. I also write on Medium and I have a Medium publication called “In the Trenches” where I publish writers who haven't been published before. They wanted to be able to get an extra boost and get started in media and publishing. 

41:55 MI: That's awesome. So definitely look her up if you don't follow her now and follow her. Thank you so much for joining the show today. It was great having you on. 

42:05 CG: Thanks for having me.

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