Small Nation, Big Plans

Iceland is an interesting country – great landscapes, friendly people, a little Europe and a little US in feel – and today they are taking a first in social media. Iceland is rewriting their constitution with their citizens’ help via social media. What a concept!

Our neighbor to the Atlantic North East is only populated by 300,000 people (and equal numbers of sheep), so social media makes perfect sense. Innovation is not new to the Icelandic, in fact, they are the undisputed heavy weights in geothermal energy science. And, of course, once played a dominant role in world banking (but don’t mention that if you visit!).

Will their political plan pan out? Hard to say, although they certainly know their citizens well enough to try. The vast majority of their populace is located in the capital, a top 10 of most wired cities in the world, and depends on the Internet to stay in touch with the rest of the world – more so than most other countries.

Can business learn from Iceland? Absolutely! If you want to improve what you’re doing or communicate with an audience, you need to go where your stakeholders are. I doubt Iceland’s political structure knew much about social media prior to their campaign, however, they learned and are now engaged in a pioneering project. “Viking up,” business world – if Iceland can do it so can you!

This post was first published by Eric Seymour on March Communications’ blog, PR Nonsense, and may be viewed here.

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