RBH Makes "Last Call" on eBay Ink
By: Richard Brewer-Hay
Well, here we are. Today marks my last day as chief blogger of our corporate blog, eBay Ink.
Starting on Monday, June 18, I will be heading up our social efforts at StubHub HQ in SF. Thankfully, as a result, this is definitely NOT goodbye.
I’ve never really been at a loss for words… until now. As a result, I thought it best to share the email I sent to our company earlier this week. I sent it to everyone in global communications; to our CEO, CFO and the President of PayPal. I sent it to our mobile, PayPal and eBay Marketplaces teams. I’m sharing it with you because I really believe it and am genuinely excited at the future possibilities…
"I’ve been blogging on behalf of our company since the end of March, 2008 and have come to equate what I do to bartending. There are 200 or so people involved in the creation of any given pint of beer – from the farmers to the water company to the distributors, etc. – but the only human interaction you have with that pint when you go into a pub is the bartender who serves it to you. You create a relationship with that bartender (and, while I’m on the analogy, the English pub or neighborhood bar is essentially your first social network right? The place where workers, farmers, butchers, etc. all came together to share stories over a pint). So when we represent our company and our business on any level externally, we are bartending on behalf of our brand and each individual blog post represents a large number of colleagues and friends.
In order to stay fresh, consistent, alert, attentive and effective, bartenders work in shifts. I’ve seen a lot of bartenders emerge across our businesses over the 4+ years I’ve been on my shift. Partner that with the unbelievable opportunity for social at StubHub, and the decision was an easy one for me to make.
It is an incredibly exciting time for social here at eBay. We have seasoned social veteran, Dave Peck, joining our PayPal team; Don Bradford leading the charge on social product for eBay Marketplaces and social functionality being integrated directly into our core offerings more and more. We have Andrew Chase’s Social Selling pilot and just held our 7th successful eBay: On Location. We have regional social leadership in place – like PayPal’s Jon Bishop in the UK and Christian Richtscheid in Germany – and we have executives playing an active role in social networks (see @DavidMarcus, @cdixon, @jackabraham and @RichelleParham for examples). We have “bartenders” (or if you prefer “Social Ambassadors”) in both IR and Legal and we will continue to evolve all social programs across businesses and geographies.
So yes, it may be last call for me on Ink but it is just the beginning of bartending here at eBay and I am very proud and glad to say that I am a continued player in the eBay Social Media Mavens program.
eBay Ink will continue to deliver stories, opinions and conversation around all aspects of our business. Relying more on our larger network of bartenders than on one individual contributor, the blog will truly represent Inc. For those of you wanting to contribute story ideas, stories of your own and/or news for eBay Ink moving forward, please send to our Digital Publishing team: email@example.com. I know am leaving the blog in very capable hands.
All that’s left to be said is thank you for everything. From my first interview with Bob Swan to sitting down with John Donahoe in his hotel room in Dallas (akin to a witness relocation video interview), it has been a heck of a ride for sure and I can’t wait to see what the future holds for everyone involved with social at eBay, PayPal, StubHub and around the world.
I’ve been in a very unique position since I’ve been at our company and the biggest takeaway I have is that we are definitely a company of individuals and personalities – people that really care for the success of our business. People tend to focus too much on stats and metrics when it comes to social. Yes, these things are essential but social media is not all about the number of followers or friends or likes. Our business and our success is built upon a foundation of individual personalities and entrepreneurs and the relationships forged with each. We are inherently linked to one another (see: “What’s in a feedback score? A Twitter Follower count… Just a human being.”
As long as we keep the true essence of “social” at the heart of our programs, then we’ll continue to be successful in the long run and I’m very fired up to be given the opportunity to do just that at StubHub!"
Please continue to follow @ebayinkblog and read what’s coming out on the blog. I know I will. You can follow me on two handles on Twitter… For my work at StubHub – @StubHubRBH; for my beer updates – @ESBAle.