Saturday, April 6, 2013

Nothing Social About It

The term social marketing is a flawed one.  The reason is that the majority of "social" marketers use new tools like Facebook and Twitter in the unsocial ways they've always operated, to broadcast.   

While the building of networks is crucial their function, the foundation of these tools is still broadcasting because users build networks for the purpose of sending and receiving (broadcasting) updates to them.  Therefore, at its core, the social marketing that's often touted as a marketing breakthrough isn't that different from the broadcasting of advertisements your grandfather grew up with.    

Therefore, not surprising, a lot of brands design their social marketing around the tools they've been sold, not vice-verse.  

In my opinion, the broadcast-centric social marketing strategy is misleading marketers.  Instead of using social media to drive sales, marketers should flip the formula, and design strategies from the perspective of sales (and those real-world interactions) driving social media.

Then marketers can shift their social agenda from broadcasting content to amplifying those real-world connections.  It's a social strategy that's more parts customer service than advertising and perhaps winds up looking more like Angie's List than Facebook. 

Just wanted to add this late revision I stumbled upon today.  I think it's a perfect example.

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