Hi Brian. Thanks so much for answering a few questions. Your reputation and credibility in the New Media arena placed you on the top of my interview wish list, and I am very grateful you were able to find some time to respond. I have spent extensive time on your website and I encourage anyone reading this post to visit there as often as possible.

So without further adieu…

DC: Who is Brian Solis and what does he do?

BS: My name is Brian Solis and among many things, I’m the author of the new book Engage! The Complete Guide for Businesses to Build and Measure Success in the New Web. I also run my website  BrianSolis.com and contribute to Fast Company, Harvard Business Review, BusinessWeek, and others. My research and writing is dedicated to analyzing, interpreting and surfacing trends in new media, business, and technology. I also am the principal and founder of FutureWorks, an agency that helps businesses lead creative digital and influence campaigns as well as working with leaders to adapt to the social (R)evolution.

DC: How do you define New Media?

BS: New media is just that…it’s innovation across each medium as we know it as well as those we can’t possible see or imagine yet. Emerging platforms are in process of evolving and adapting until they reach a plateau worthy of staged adoption starting on the left of the bell curve with innovators. For example, social media is but only a chapter in the ongoing definition of new media.

DC: What is the relationship between New Media and Publishing?

BS: New media publishing takes content, packaged in contextual wrappers, and delivers it to discerning audiences through their channels and networks of relevance.

DC: Please tell us a little bit about your latest book, Engage!

BS: 2010 is widely regarded as the year businesses shift from experimenting with social media to strategically designing and measuring campaigns that contribute to brand resonance, positive sentiment, advocacy, and most importantly, the bottom line. While many books, talk about social media as something that businesses need to embrace, most leave marketers wondering what they need to do and how this information applies to them.

Engage was written to help people get find answers to their questions as well as to those questions that they didn’t know to ask. It’s written to not only learn how to apply social media strategies within your company, it also helps you rally support and implement programs in order to excel personally and professionally.

Engage will help you effectively…engage.  It delivers the insights necessary to effectively build communities, activate the social web, end the battle of who owns social media, guide you through branding yourself and your company online, and also determine the ROI of everything you do.

DC: How did you get Mr. Twitter himself, Ashton Kutcher, to write a forward?

BS: I was fortunate enough to work with Ashton and his amazing team at Katalyst on several innovative new media programs. He was very gracious to provide a wonderful foreword.

DC: In a recent post, you discuss the Social Network of the future, can you elaborate on that?

BS: The social network of the future is not a site or service, but a platform…or what I call a Social OS (operating system). As a platform, it will connect us not only to our social graphs, but our interest graphs…the social nicheworks that we form based on common interests, themes, experiences, and passions. As a platform, the social network of the future will scale with us as individuals and ensure that the right content and people stay connected in a way that’s collaborative, productive, and inspirational.

DC: If you were to give the commencement speech at your alma mater, what would your message be regarding the future of the online business?

BS: I’m forever a student of new media, and therefore, my commencement speech would encourage graduates to stay hungry for insight, knowledge and innovation. The world of online business is undergoing incredible transformation and takes leaders to navigate the unchartered territory of new media. To become a leader, it takes answers not guesses based on learning, experimentation and experience. This is your time to make a difference.

Author’s note: Brian is one of the instructors at Facebook Success Summit 2010: The Web’s Largest Online Facebook Marketing Conference – a month long event starting 10/5. His upcoming appearances, speaking engagements and webinars can be found here. Brian is also on Twitter, LinkedIn, FaceBook, and has his own Wikipedia page and APP for iPhone and Android.

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