The idea that 'markets are conversations' dates back to the The Cluetrain Manifesto, which if anything, is more relevant today than when it was first published:
I remember it seeming so revolutionary when I read it in 1999, articulating for the first time what those of us involved in the internet felt about the coming change it was bringing. That change has taken longer than we thought it would, but the tenets of the manifesto still hold true.
One of its most important points is that real conversations are conducted in a human voice and it gives good advice about how companies can learn to speak human. Our friend Adriana Lukas has more:
It's something that's all too easy to forget when subject to corporate groupthink, and something we try our best to help our clients remember...
Update: Jonathan Hopkins reminds me that similar things have been said recently about being nice and being human by our friends James Warren, Faris Yakob and James Whatley. It's well worth reading all of their posts. I'll leave you with a quote from Mr Whatley:
Social Media isn’t about Technology, it isn’t about being online or offline. It’s simply about being Human.