Fishing and Mapping

I loved fishing when I was a child. One of my favorites back then. Not so unusual. We lived on the river bank, whose other side boasted two big lakes, one of which provided water for the rice fields of our villagers. Scientifically it’s called irrigation. But admittedly, I wasn’t very good at fishing. It takes a very patient person to catch the fish that he wants to fish. Have you ever heard the story of Jiang Ziya? He waited until he was 80 to catch the right fish with “a barbless hook or even no hook at all.”

Jiang Ziya

Jiang Ziya

Stephen R. Covey, in his “The 7 habits of highly effective people”, talks about maps. No, life orientation. With the right map, even if you’re slower than others, or your techniques are not as good as them, you’ll “get there” one day. On the other hand, no matter how superb one person is, using the Hanoi map to find a club in Saigon takes him nowhere regardless of how skillful he is. Character vs Personality.

What the hell do fishing and maps have to do with social media anyway?

Well for one thing, social media is so different from traditional marketing in that it takes a lot of time, it’s incremental. It’s neither about blockbusters nor serial killing ads on da TV. It’s about building up the conversation and “keep posting”. Or fishing. With or without a hook. When you have an interesting story to tell, they will come to you. You probably won’t have to wait until you’re 80 like our man. But don’t expect success to come early.

It may never come, if you’re fishing in the wrong lake. What if the lake has no fish and you’re happily waiting? Bingo! We need a map! Why didn’t anyone say this early?

To make life easier for fishermen, Forrester Research has proposed a methodology called POST (People – Objective – Strategy – Technology), whose use is to help our men catch fish more easily. The People in this methodology means looking at the lakes we currently have and identifying ones that have the most fish. Simple as that.

POST Method by Forrester Research

POST Method by Forrester Research

So after two weeks of running the Social Technologies Survey, we’ve been able to release the initial maps to the highly-participated-by-the-fish lakes, which can be found here.

Don’t worry if you don’t understand Vietnamese, we’ll present it at Barcamp Saigon, in more details. But here are a couple of highlights:

  • 26% are still blogging. This could be way higher if it were 2008. The closure of Y!360 has significantly increased the rate of unemployment in the blogosphere.
  • Blog readers and commentators account for 80% (!) of Web participants.
  • Forums are stil popular among Internet users in Vietnam, with only 10% “don’t give it a damn” about this platform.
  • As expected, Social Networks rule the gang. 50% update their profiles/avatars at least once a month while 41% post on their buddies’ wall.
  • RSS is surprisingly used by 21% of the participants.

Of course, our fisherman can always use guesswork, it might work, but he may waste time fishing at too many lakes at the same time. Do you love fishing?

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