SocialMedia.org Founding Member Bob Pearson

March 26, 2024

Bob Pearson, formerly the Vice President of Communities & Conversations at Dell, talks about why it was important to help launch SocialMedia.org and how the community is still relevant today.

Video Transcript

Speaker: Bob Pearson, SocialMedia.org Founding Member

Why was it so important to form this community?

Bob Pearson: The reason it was important to start what became the Blog Council and then SocialMedia.org was many of us in the industry were all struggling with the same thing, which was how do you moderate social channels? How do you create a voice for your brand or for your company? And most importantly, we knew we had a lot to learn from each other. So I give Andy Sernovitz a tremendous amount of credit for multiple times in his career, seeing that unmet need in the market, and then stitching together the people who are willing to share and prove that actually competitors can learn from each other, and we can get better. Because if we do, it actually helps all of us. So I give a lot of credit to Andy for that kind of continued vision to figure that out and help us get that community started.

What did you enjoy most about your membership in SocialMedia.org?

Bob Pearson: What I enjoyed most about membership and SocialMedia.org is a couple of things. One is seeing the people on our team at Dell, for example, excel in sharing their insights, and that was pretty cool. Richard Binhammer, John Pope, and Lionel Menchaca -- I mean the list goes on and on -- people who just had so much to give back and did such a great job of doing it. So I feel like I learned more sometimes listening to them teach others than even what we do inside Dell. The second is learned a lot from peers. Whether it was Procter & Gamble, or Intel, or Walmart, or you name it -- a lot of smart people out there, and so if you learn to listen, you can actually learn quite a bit as we all know. So I think that was it. And then the other thing was just proving that a model like this works. That you can get hundreds of companies together that otherwise might look at each other as scant and think that they're competitive, and actually realize that we're not. I mean, yes, we might be in the business world, but we're not when it comes to how do we serve our customers? How do we actually use social media effectively? And particularly in a day like 2022, how do we combat this info and extremism and all that? We need to pull together once again to do stuff like that. So that to me is what's really most important.

What sets SocialMedia.org apart from other organizations?

Bob Pearson: What sets SocialMedia.org apart from other organizations is something that I hope stays with it forever. So you think in the very beginning, it was this ability to get us all to share and talk about how we actually even approach social media. But if I look at today's world, it could be how do we deal with misinformation and disinformation so we can improve society, and we can protect citizens of the world? Or it could be, how do we actually look at paid, earned, shared, and owned media and how it all works together in a digital environment. So I think the thing that set SocialMedia.org apart in the beginning is hopefully part of the DNA that will always be with it forever. So if SocialMedia.org is always doing things that are kind of pushing the needle a little bit and maybe getting into areas that people don't know as well as they should, then I would say that the mission is staying whole.

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