“Word of mouth is the best form of advertising”
You’ve heard it a thousand times and I’m not about to dispute it. A recommendation from a friend carries more currency than my bag of radio tricks or my contemporaries bag of print, billboard and TV tricks.
Maybe that’s what makes the promise of social media marketing so seductive. Imagine, being able to be privy to “word of mouth” between friends on social networks. Finally, you’ll be able to have a direct influence on; nay, control of, the most powerful form of advertising on the PLANET!
There’s just one problem with that promise of social media marketing. It’s 100% Grade-A baloney.
If you, or someone you know, run a small business, BEWARE!!!! There are more than a few hucksters out there who will try to tell you that Social networking ala Facebook and Twitter is "free advertising" that can totally eliminate the need for more traditional modes of advertising.
Yes, I know what you're thinking. "Terry, you work in traditional advertising. It's your bread and butter. Of course you think these cats are hucksters."
True, my trade is radio advertising. I don't deny that. Also, I don't deny that a Social Media presence is a good thing for a business to have. HOWEVER, to rely on it as one's only marketing tool is a fool's errand. But hey, don't take my word for it. Ask the guy in charge of one of the biggest businesses with one of the most recognizable "brands" in the world. Quick question. What do you think of when you hear the words, "Just do it"?
Stefan Olander, Nike's global director of brand connections, noted at Lindsay, Stone & Briggs' Brandworks University 2009 that many of Nike's online campaigns received overwhelming response at launch. Colleagues at Nike were excited about the prospect of dropping expensive traditional media campaigns in favor of these successful digital campaigns. Olander reminded them that, despite how well-known the Nike brand is, to optimize online conversations they still must jump-start initiatives with traditional media.
That's because traditional media can do what social media cannot: aggressively interject messages into people's lives in a socially acceptable way...
Experts at the World Advertising Research Center have also studied what it takes to optimize engagement in a conversation economy. They recommend this media priority:
2.Open networks such as blogs and websites.
3.Closed networks such as Facebook and MySpace.
Link for reference: http://web.me.com/bobhoffman18/Bullies/Conversation.html
Hey, I like Social Media. I have a Facebook page, a Twitter account, a LaLa account, once upon a time I had a MySpace page before it became uncool to have one. I might even be LinkeIn. I'm not sure. I love Social Media. I get to keep in touch with buds, look at pictures of their cats n stuff and have one more reason not to bother going to High School Reunions.
I hate opening up my Facebook/Twitter/etc. inbox to find Friend Requests from people who want to sell me stuff.
I also hate it when friends sell themselves as spam bots. No, I'm not making this up. Read on, my friend: http://www.nytimes.com/2009/11/22/business/22ping.html?_r=3&partner=rss&emc=rss
Want me to unfriend you? Start trying to sell stuff to me via Facebook or Twitter and I'll unfriend you faster than I can water a field in Farmville. Nothing personal. It’s just that that sort of behavior is socially unacceptable.
In full disclosure, I must admit that I do plug stuff that will be happening during my show: Keywords, features, etc. Some of those things are sponsored. My rationale is this: When I become a “Fan” of a business on Facebook, I am indeed interested in updates about their product or service. However, if you they show up in my inbox out of the blue or convince one of my friends to start spamming out, I’m gonna block/unfriend them. Again, nothing personal. It’s just that that sort of behavior is socially unacceptable. I assume that if you accept a friend request from a DJ, you’re in to what said DJ is doing and want to know about it via Social networking.
If you were at a party having a conversation with friends and all of a sudden some jabroni started in on you and your pals with a sales pitch, you might be inclined to punch him in the head for his troubles. Can’t say as I’d blame you. That sort of behavior is socially unacceptable
However, if I’m watching a television program and your sales pitch comes on, I won’t be offended by it. I’ll just TIVO past it. (Nothing personal, but I gotta find out what’s gonna happen next on Lost/24/Survivor. By the way, best season of Survivor ever this year, right?)
If I’m reading a newspaper…Hah! Right. Let’s start over. If I’m reading a newspaper’s website and your sales pitch is on it, I won’t offended by it. I probably won’t even see it because my eyes tend to scan past anything that isn’t important to me. Same goes for billboards.
If I’m listening to a radio station and your sales pitch comes on, I won’t be offended by it. It’s part of the deal when I listen to free radio. Best of all, since I’m at work, I won’t bother flipping the dial because the music will be back soon anyway. (Bias? What bias?)
One more time for effect: traditional media can do what social media cannot: aggressively interject messages into people's lives in a SOCIALLY ACCEPTABLE way.
Word of mouth is a conversation between friends that (and I'm sorry to be the one to break this to you) you're just not welcome to participate in.
My team and I offer real advertising solutions, not pipe dreams based on faulty premises. Yes, we cost money, just like most stuff that actually works. We can even help you with that Social networking stuff. Call 842-1672. Ask for Jeff.
Your TTPK Clue from last night is: “You can take that to the”.
Your Bonus Keyword from Monday morning should have been “hunt”. I have no idea why it didn’t play, but it’s good for 5000 WDEZ Club Points until 1700 on 11/25/09.
Your Blog Keyword for today is: “nomospam”. It’s good for 250 WDEZ Club Points until 1700 on 11/25/09.