Is a ‘Social Culture’ worth $928m?

There is lots of news around today about Amazon’s purchase of Zappos for $928m, which was announced on YouTube Many seem astounded at this price tag but for me it finally demonstrates to the world how valuable an investment and commitment in social media really is.

Zappos is often touted as story of social media success but its not just their use of twitter or having a blog that drives their greatness, as Jeff Bezos puts it; its the “customer obsession and their unique culture” that drives his admiration (and now purchase) of this company.

Zappos’s social media success is not due to their technical brilliance or their broad social media presence, its because such tools are complemented, and facilitated, by their strong ‘social’ culture.  They get that social media is more than just a few new tools or tactics, its a complete approach to doing business that needs commitment right from the top.    A sociable culture puts emphasis on building strong long term relationships; having an open dialogue, listening to feedback, sharing this knowledge and innovating around insight.  The financial reward is loyal customers that love you and good old word of mouth. ‘Simples’.

Being a sociable brand is more than just having a social media presence, its about developing a sociable culture and this places ‘social media’ high on any companies strategic agenda.   I think we need to invest as much time and effort integrating social practices into an organisation and culture as we do to marketing campaigns.  The investment is worth it, it would seem – being a sociable brand can enhance your overall brand value and your bottom line.

As Seth Godin puts it, its these things “that matter” to businesses today.

Does it matter to you?


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