Rainer Maria Rilke once wrote, “The work of the eyes is done. Go now and do the heart-work on the images imprisoned within you.”
Coy Caballes, among so few, lighted and stoked the embers that started a revolution.
That’s a lot to say for someone. The word “revolution” has been so abused here that anyone can come up with something mediocre, and call it something grand for the sake of rhetoric or maybe even marketing. But Coy – my friend, my fellow blogger, my client – came up with something that truly fits the mold of revolution.
In simple terms: Coy came up with social media marketing in the Philippines. Yes, he was one of the first client-side social media managers in the Philippines. And it’s an honor and a privilege to have been part of that journey.
I think it was way back November 2008, when I worked for a company that was once called NetBooster – when I walked into the Globe Telecom offices to meet Globe’s new social media manager. It was on that day that a professional relationship was born, and a personal friendship grew. There were five or six of us in that meeting: a meeting that, in part, probably helped start it all for community management in the Philippines.
I’m not one to call the task “pioneering” or anything like that. It was just a meeting, probably. Social media management – maybe branded Facebook pages – were around long before either Coy or myself got started with making projects named after StarCraft characters. Back then, the role of the “social media manager” was a gamble: could brands use social networks for marketing? What does it mean? What does it give my brand, or my organization? “What is this ORM?”
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It was a mad hustle for people like me, Andre, ES, Bim, and Peter – to name a few – to get the clients that get business moving. More so for someone like Coy, who worked for one of the country’s largest telco companies. This was still new back then, when digital had small budgets (or if any) and the risk coming into the venture was too high. There were no command centers: we had to work in sleeping bags, cramped coffee tables, and clunky Blackberries to get the dice going.