Synchronicity is finally my bailiwick. Timing the trends correctly.

December 22, 2008

As I look around me, the social media space is developing as the news media space is deconstructing itself. For the first time in many years I’m on the wave instead of behind it.

Don’t believe me? Here are the trends, opportunities and situations I’ve barely missed for one reason or another. Now I feel as if I’ve caught up and dashed ahead of the crowd. Timing IS everything.

1978-81ish – A scrawny and sickly Jeff Cutler is diagnosed with Crohn’s Disease. Had this boy remained healthy for a couple more years he might have more intestines and a slightly better quality of life.

1986 – Jeff Cutler tries out for the college baseball team. Although Cutler runs a 4.8 40-yard dash (that used to be fast in the 80s), the team is already chock full of outfielders. Cutler goes on to star as a cheerleader at the school.

1992 – A fast but undersized Jeff Cutler (see Crohn’s issue above) is invited to a Major League Baseball tryout. He’s demolished in the 60-yard dash by steroid-enhanced 18-year-olds. The Boston Herald devotes an entire Sunday newspaper page to Cutler’s plight.

1997 – Along with two college friends, Jeff starts a Website ‘Rehabilitation’ firm. The company, ConceptClub, flounders for a bit and Cutler accepts a buyout of minimal proportion. ConceptClub morphs into ConceptHost and is providing a nice living these days for one of the founders.

1999 – Cutler enters the dot-com fray only to see it turn into a dot-bomb fiasco. After a quick stint with Fidelity Investments as an Online Editor, he moves to and is the first one fired as they burn through hundreds of thousands of dollars in beanbag chairs, Sprint PCS cell phones and free breakfasts.

2005 – In the midst of a storied career as a journalist, Jeff ramps up his column-writing efforts and reaches prominence in two short years. Just in time for the papers with whom he’s writing to cancel their Freelance Opinion Column budgets. Hopes for syndication are also diminished as the blogosphere erupts with talking head-esque writing from every corner of the globe.

2007 – After fine-tuning his craft, Cutler matches his writing to the needs of an anxious and hungry editorial base. His features are purchased faster than ever and his work is appearing Internationally…until newsrooms begin to slash staff because of revenue cuts. Cutler gets kill-fee checks like never before and has to begin competing with ‘citizen journalists’ for inches and pay.

2008-09 – The Social Media space welcomes Jeff with open arms. An experienced journalist and writer, Jeff also knows how to connect with people using social media tools and techniques. With the advantage of 20 years in journalism, he brings a unique value to publications anxious to put more content online. These companies are looking for traditionally trained journalists for content and Jeff is poised to assist these firms. Further, every company in the world is now drooling over the possible upside to having a social media presence. Jeff Cutler offers these companies the services of a professional blogger with the skills of a pro reporter and writer.

Stay tuned to see how this chapter turns out. I’ve already been contacted by dozens of companies who are interested in hiring me to write their blogs and report – impartially – on their company. And as you know, I’m covering the Consumer Electronics Show #CES09 in Las Vegas for both traditional and new media outlets.

Got any leads you want to share or stories of your own success? Share them in the comments.

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