I recently told a friend, someone who happens to be a Director of Marketing in the US for two luxury items, that I’d help her understand digital marketing and social media.
She expressed her frustration by saying “There seem to be so many galaxies in the social media universe that when trying to grasp it all I feel a bit like an astronaut cut loose in space to float aimlessly through the darkness”. Very well put.
So, I’ll encapsulate how I’ve responded here. Not a cut and paste, but I’m rewriting it for the blog.
First of all, what is social media?
It may be easier to start out by pointing out what social media is not. That’s because we are so used to marketing mediums that are essentially broadcast systems of one to many as with television and radio. That’s not social media. The social part changes it because, while it can be one to many, the vast majority of the time it is not restricted by these paradigms we’re used to. Instead, social media can change to many to one or to many to many, making it at times an ongoing conversation. It’s not a place where one can simply constantly send out marketing messages of fluff. Brands often don’t understand that. They want to promote and wait for the results to pour in. People have different expectations and will respond in ways they choose as opposed to the way you often want them to.
Social media also allows pretty much everyone to create, to change, to share, to evaluate content. Content that others can then do the same as well. Some of those “others” become influential, important. They can be an asset or a threat.
For brands, this means that the content that is created must be relevant to those who it is intended for. If its not relevant to the receiver, it’s useless to the receiver.
Secondly, it’s already here.