Thought Leadership with Mitchell Levy and Michael Procopio, Episode 41: September 24, 2014

Thought Leadership with Mitchell and MichaelIn this episode of Thought Leadership with Mitchell and Michael (#TLL) we interview

Our guest this week was Axel Schultze (@AxelS).

2014 Founder & CEO Society3, Startup and Business Accelerator with focus on helping startups getting more traction, growing user base and gaining market validation. General Partner in Society3 Ventures founded summer 2014.

Axel Schultze2012 Developing social media management tools. User base grew quickly to 1.8 Million and became the foundation technology for Society3

2008 Founder & CEO of Social Media Academy, self funded, educating in aggregate over 5,000 attendees from 28 countries and team mates from corporations including Avaya, Dell, Oracle, SAP. Largest Social Media education provider in the world.

In this episode, Mitchell and Michael share insights with #ThoughtLeader Axel Schultze about the topic democratization of influence. Axel, who is the founder of business accelerator Society3 and the founder and CEO of Social Media Academy, believes #ThoughtLeadership happens when companies, specifically the leadership bench, communicate what really matters to them and gain influence for doing so. In defining democratization of influence, Axel says that theoretically, anybody can gain influence, given the tools and channels we have today, can become publishers. Experts and #ThoughtLeaders could be more influential by communicating their expertise to the world. The discussion also touches on the need for social media guidelines for company employees and even the management to be guided in communicating to customers through social media. A social media guideline will become more effective and powerful if it is done with the team. Axel also notes that this is different from social media monitoring and cites an example where a company manager pointed out they do not need to monitor what employees are saying on social media just as they don’t monitor what they are saying to customers who walk into the store every day.

One question about democratization of influence is whether the leadership is really engaging on social media, to which Axel notes that the leadership team has a very important role in embracing #ThoughtLeadership and in embracing democratization of influence. Axel also emphasizes mid-level companies, those with 100 to 500 employees, can gain influence by using the team, and the employee base, very efficiently to communicate to the market. It is all for free, and the only thing you need to invest is time. So spend 30 minutes online to communicate with the ecosystem and that will go a long way.

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Here are a couple of aha moments from the episode. See more in the “Aha Moments from Thought Leader Life” books available in the THiNKaha App:

* The more people who have influence, the better. @AxelS
* A thousand voices for a company helps clean up any mess w/in an hour. @AxelS
* Just because you can doesn’t mean you should. @happyabout
* If you have something you stand for, communicate it. That’s the first step to gaining influence. @AxelS

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This episode was sponsored, in part, by, helping experts become thought leaders.

You can connect with Mitchell at, @HappyAbout on Twitter, or join his Thought Leadership Best Practices Group on LinkedIn; and with Michael at, on Twitter: @MichaelProcopio; or LinkedIn:

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Posted by Michael Procopio on 09/24 at 10:49 AM






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