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Communicating Through Digital Divides with Anthony Shop

How do you define power in your brand’s social media? In this climate of mis- and disinformation, navigating a brand’s path across the internet means facing difficult conversations head-on. How do you forge ahead, craft an image and perspective that is authentic to the culture of your team, and place it online in a way that aligns with your values?

Our guest this week is Anthony Shop. Anthony is co-founder and Chief Strategy officer of Social Driver, an agency dedicated to building brand image online for their clients. He’s also Chairman of the National Digital Roundtable, a DC-based group whose mission is to educate and inform professionals about the technology, trends, and tactics that are transforming how society interacts with the world around them. In short, Anthony Shop knows of what he speaks on this subject. 

This is a conversation about trends, but not the trends defining what we’re wearing or listening to. We’re talking about the choices brands are making as they choose how to show up online, to live their values on digital channels, navigating the heated rhetoric that dominated so many spaces this election year. Are brands stepping back, or digging deeper into their social strategies?

Anthony’s answer may surprise you. It all starts with people. “If CNN calls, you can’t send your logo, you have to send a person! More companies are embracing using their people,” he says. “Social media policies used to be about what not to do. Now, companies are helping leaders to build their presence,” as individuals.

Agencies are carrying heavy baggage right now. Shaking free of white-dominant norms and toxicity can go a long way toward allowing more individuals the freedom to share new ideas for their clients, but our field has a long way to go. Taking Social Driver as an example gives us a light, a model that Anthony and team have created together of an intentional culture built on values and partnership inside the agency and beyond it. We’re so grateful Anthony is here to teach us today.

Links & Notes

  • (00:00) – Welcome to Mission Forward
  • (05:27) – Where does power come from?
  • (11:08) – Re-thinking Teams
  • (14:19) – National Digital Roundtable
  • (16:37) – The Digital Landscape: The Underinvestment in People Profiles
  • (20:01) – Broadcasting vs. Narrowcasting
  • (22:32) – Platform vs. Values
  • (27:01) – Inspirations
This season, we are taking you on a journey to meet ten people influencing and shaping how we communicate at scale for social change. From advertising executives to coalition directors, news editors, campaign managers, and authors, they’re all people who are shaping and challenging the deep power of communication. If you’re working to become a more inclusive and thoughtful communicator, there’s nothing holding you back—except you.
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