The number one rule of real estate is “location, location, location”. The same could be said about marketing. Over the last decade, the strategic tactics of marketing have undergone a massive metamorphosis similar to the revolution of the printing press or the introduction of the television – except this time the medium is the internet and the message: conversation. It seems the public has taken residence on Social Media drive and each year the market value is increasing. The question is – Are you in the right neighborhood?
Social Media: Where Anyone Can Talk and Everyone will Listen
Social media accounts for more time spent on the web than any other activity. 87% percent of active web users regularly visit social networks or blogs.
Take Canadian singer/songwriter Dave Carroll for example. In 2008, he and his bandmates flew, via United Airlines, to Omaha for a week-long performance. While stalled on the tarmac in Chicago, Carroll and fellow passengers witnessed United baggage handlers “chucking” luggage without regard–seemingly throwing suitcases, duffel bags and most concerning to Carroll, his guitar case into the cargo bay. Upon arriving in Omaha, Carroll confirmed his fears. His 710 Taylor guitar, valued at $3,200, had sustained significant damage. After almost nine months of getting the “run around” and being denied any claim of compensation, Carroll did what many disgruntled modern day customers would do after such an exercise in futility: he made and posted a YouTube video.
Carroll’s YouTube video entitled “United Breaks Guitars” is just over four years old and has amassed nearly 13.2 million views. The vast number of views was not necessarily tied to what United did, but rather what the company did not do — initially respond to the outcry.
Carroll’s incident illustrates how, in today’s global market, consumers are no longer passive recipients in the marketing exchange process. Where once, neatly packaged public relations campaigns and boardrooms were the norm, consumers now demand a seat at the executive table and the ability to contribute to the corporate conversation.
Tips to keep in mind when developing content
- Embrace a paradigm – transcend the idea of being a marketer and embrace the idea of becoming a storyteller. Consumers are more likely to engage in conversation when they are being talked to rather than being talked at.
- As any successful conversationalist will tell you – Avoid talking about yourself (or your brand) all the time. Take a genuine interest in others by: sharing interesting articles or industry tips, asking thought-provoking questions, or brightening the mood by posting a humorous picture or cartoon.
- Appoint a “gardener” to cultivate and grow your social media that has understanding of communication strategy and your overall brand and mission.
If your organization is ready to join the social media conversation, contact us to customize a portfolio today.