So what does all this mean for marketing in 2010 and beyond? The biggest change in marketing has been the shift from push marketing to more of a conversation with customers. In the past, companies were limited to communicating directly with us through radio and television commercials, print advertising, billboards, and other “old media” ways of marketing. But somewhere along the way, we got cynical. We realized that our friends and colleagues were probably more honest about products and services than the self-interested companies that marketed to us. So we started listening to our friends and social networks more and traditional advertising less.
The need to share information
If the rise of mainstream social media has proved one thing, it is that a lot of people have an intrinsic need to share things about themselves. Maybe it’s self-importance, maybe everyone needs to feel like a celebrity. I don’t know. But social media today captures a lot of mundane information about users. Sometimes that mundane information can include an experience, positive or negative, with your brand or with your company. Today, everyone can broadcast to their own little social media network usually a few hundred people. For more on this topic.
Immediacy is here to stay.
All of the tools provided in social media give people an opportunity to respond immediately to things and share those reactions with friends in real-time. It could be a great experience with a restaurant, a terrible interaction with an airline at the airport, you name it. With immediacy comes human emotion—powerful at Social Media I n 2010 Tells Us about t h e Future of Marketing feelings once shared only in the presence of friends can now be shared immediately with friends, colleagues, acquaintances, and the general public through social media.
Everyone is a source of information, and everyone is biased.
It’s 2010, so people don’t just hear about news, events, and so on from the local TV news broadcast and/or newspaper. People (not to mention your customers) hear about things from blogs, Twitter, articles, and casual conversations. Some people’s opinions on politics are influenced by The Daily Show with Jon Stewart and the Fox News Channel! Let’s face it: The line between fact and opinion is muddy. People today don’t have the interest or the time to learn the difference between the two.
Realistic Social Marketing Expectations
Now that we’ve reviewed the background and the trends of where we are, how do you put together a plan that takes advantage of the opportunities? Where is the low-hanging fruit? What should you expect when starting a social media effort or campaign? First, let us set the expectation properly: Social media marketing, and particularly Facebook marketing, takes time. It isn’t something you just turn on overnight to gain followers, fans, friends, and hoards of consumers saying good things about your brand and/or your company. Facebook will not do your job for you, it won’t sell for you, and it won’t make you creative.