Here are all of the posts tagged ‘advertising’.
David Gillespie has been burning the midnight oil producing this epic 260 slide presentation, which covers a lot of ground, including his thoughts about the ‘Intention Economy’, in an incredibly compelling way. As you’ll see from the opening slides, it has a particular resonance for us here at We Are Social. Over to him:
Social Media is a conversation. That seems to be one thing that we all agree on
You can read all 10 in full here (which I highly recommend doing):
- Mark Earls – People not consumers
- Le’Nise Brothers – Social agenda not business agenda
- John Willshire – Continuous conversation not campaigning
- Faris Yakob – Long term impacts not quick fixes
- Katy Lindemann – Marketing with people not to people
- Neil Perkin – Being authentic not persuasive
- Jamie Coomber – Perpetual beta
- Amelia Torode – Technology changes, people don’t
- Graeme Wood – Change will never be this slow again
- Asi Sharabi – Measure and evaluate
As the IPA’s President, Rory Sutherland says:
At a time when the population of Facebook is now greater than all but three countries in the world, and when BT is delivering customer service via twitter, this is an area which forces us to question many of our ingrained assumptions about advertising, brands and intangible value.
and from Mark Earls’ scene setting essay:
For all the excitement today around the Twitters and Facebooks, the tougher problems for the advertising industry to get to grips with are all rooted in the way social media – the stuff that connects humans with other humans – changes the game for our clients and society at large.
IPA Social is an admirable initiative, one which we’ll continue to participate in, and their 10 principles are an excellent overview of how brands need to come to terms with social media, representing the thinking of some the greatest minds in modern advertising (all of whom are good friends of ours). The launch event was also a great evening, focused on starting conversations rather than presenting a revealed truth.
However, it still was very focused on traditional ‘advertising’, with a large proportion of time spent hearing about VCCP’s Compare the Meerkat campaign. We split out into groups towards the end of the event and in the group I led, we discussed whether campaigns like Compare the Meerkat are really social media campaigns. Although the campaign has rich presences in social media, we’re weren’t sure that was a factor in it’s success. We felt it was the strength of the creative idea and the media spend at work here – and the fact that Oasis’ Rubberduckzilla has substantially more fans than Aleksandr the Meerkat on Facebook, despite no attempts to engage with social media helps re-enforce this point. It was felt that real social media campaigns are ones where the conversation itself drives the success of the campaign (like our This is Now campaign for Ford).
I also couldn’t miss joining in the discussion about which types of agency were best suited for social media. The point I made was as follows. Over the last ten years digital agencies stole a march on above the line agencies by building bigger, better and more motivated specialist teams. This let them innovate faster and develop a critical mass of best practise that accelerated the skills gap between them and their above-the-line competitors. Specialist social media agencies will do the same to digital and other agencies. To use We Are Social as an example, who else has a team of twenty experienced practitioners, entirely focused on innovative, creative and effective social media marketing and communications? Each day and each new hire widens the gap between us and those in pursuit.
Overall, I left feeling comforted that the specialist agencies’ lead in social media was safe for some time to come…
Our friend Nick Burcher, Head of Products / Partnerships EMEA at Publicis’ VivaKi, drew me a diagram last time we caught up for coffee outlining his social media world view, which he’s since written up. I think it’s a valuable perspective (although there is something missing, which I’ll come to below):
Traditionally marketing efforts have focussed around ‘The Destination.’ Ad space is bought to push people to a main site / microsite and this could be anything from Paid Search to TV to Print. It’s all about ‘go here now!’ There is a direct correlation between ad spend and ‘Destination’ traffic. Generally increase in ad spend = increase in traffic and decreasing ad spend results in decreasing traffic.
This is changing though. New ‘Destinations’ are being created, it’s no longer just a main site or a microsite. Facebook Fan Pages are being used as an activity hub with paid ads driving traffic. Alternatively the Destination could be a YouTube channel or other social platform.
The social web is also providing new traffic driving opportunities eg Facebook Engagement ads, sponsored Diggs or socialmedia.com social banners but the biggest change to the internet landscape though is the emergence of ‘The Conversation.’
Web 1.0 was a one way street. Users went to a site and consumed information and advertisers served messages somewhere along the way. The publisher published, the consumer consumed, the advertiser advertised . On the social web the distinctions between these three areas have all blurred and changed marketing forever.
If advertisers can successfully participate in the Conversation then it becomes less about paid pushing. The Conversation is about engaging rather than broadcasting, and if done successfully it changes the equation. Instead of having to pay to recruit every visit, consumers can be co-opted as brand ambassadors who then will freely relay the advertiser message with consequent Destination traffic the result.
Activity targeting the Conversation needs this ‘kickstart’ to give it initial momentum. This is where new disciplines like blogger outreach and video seeding come in. This is where marketers need to think of taking content to the consumer, rather than expecting consumers to come to them – and make it easy to share using ‘Blog This’ buttons, Facebook Connect and more.
Nick is right to point that it’s no longer just about ad spend, that Destinations no longer need to be microsites (if they ever did), that the Conversation is about engaging rather than broadcasting, and that traffic can flow from the Destination to the Conversation. But what the model doesn’t take account of, is the fact that it’s the Conversation, not the Destination, that’s important, and that in some cases there doesn’t need to be a Destination.
The Conversation itself sometimes can fulfill your business or marketing objectives without reference to a Destination, creating demand by driving awareness, consideration and/or engagement through far-reaching word of mouth – whether that be through simply getting the product into the hands of bloggers and generating reviews, through viral seeding where the vast majority of the video views happen out there in the conversation cloud or through a myriad of other ways.
More progressively (and effectively), you still have a Destination, but it’s designed to facilitate, support and amplify the Conversation, and success is measured not in traffic to the Destination, but in the reach, sentiment and engagement with the Conversation itself.
Our friend John V Willshire has been developing the analogy that “if advertising is a firework, social media is a bonfire”. We think it’s a good one, and very useful for simply explaining the difference between advertising and social media.
And for our non-UK readers, you can find out more about Bonfire Night here.
Update: As a counter argument, read Asi Sharabi’s On bonfires and that.
Nielsen’s latest Global Online Consumer Survey confirms that people trust other people more than they trust advertising. As Jonathan Carson explains on the Nielsen blog:
The explosion in Consumer Generated Media over the last couple of years means consumers’ reliance on word of mouth in the decision-making process, either from people they know or online consumers they don’t, has increased significantly.
It’s not surprising that people trust the opinions of people they already know – it’s why word of mouth marketing is so powerful. But as the graph below shows, the trust in online word of mouth is significant. Globally, 70% of people trust consumer opinions posted online, and the same proportion trust a brand’s own website.
Good news for those who are investing in websites? Well, when you consider the ways that sites often try to drive traffic, you’ll notice these types of activity appear very low down the list.
It’s quite striking that online word of mouth acheives much higher trust than all other online-specifc activity. Opt-in emails (also known as ‘bacn’) are only trusted by just over half of us, and only one third of people trusting online banner advertising – though average click-through rates (0.1% in the US according to Doubleclick) indicate how successful they are at delivering people to their intended destination.
We’ve been building websites that allow consumer opinions to be posted (also known as blogs!) for some of our clients, as well as helping to increase online conversations about them, so we’re pleased to see even more evidence from Nielsen that this is a valuable thing to do.
We had great news last week when we got the go ahead from Ford to continue into next quarter with This is Now, one of the pan-European campaigns we’ve been working on with them, meaning it will reach its 1st year anniversary in September.
Aside from being an amazing achievement for the team here at We Are Social who have been working so hard on it all of this time, it made me reflect on a discussion Sandrine had with Neil Perkin and Asi Sharabi in the comments of a post Neil wrote about the campaign just after it had launched.
Both Neil and Asi referenced Paul Isakson’s presentation on modern brand building:
Which has this killer quote:
Start looking at your marketing as a progressive story instead of as quarterly campaigns
Now this is something that all of us who have drunk the social media Kool-Aid take as gospel (and rightly so), but it’s often hard for both agencies and clients alike to actually implement in practice.
Although we’re finding progressive clients at all sorts of brands who get this, there are others who are perhaps more nervous of such a wholesale change in their marketing practices.
Then there are the structural issues to be overcome – Brand Managers typically change roles internally every two years and Marketing Directors don’t hang around much longer, which it makes it hard for any real long term commitment (especially if people new to the roles are keen to make their mark with a break from the past).
There’s also the question of the client’s other marketing activity (and their other agencies). It’s important that all of their marketing, from their advertising campaigns to their PR and experiential activity, works in unison and makes up a coherent whole and do not sit as isolated strands. Social media should be no different.
We have our own thoughts on this on how to deal with this dichotomy (and I have to say, we also have plenty of great case studies of successful short term social media campaigns), but it’s always more convincing to hear it from others. Over to Forrester’s Josh Bernoff:
Social [media campaigns] take a while to build, but last a long time. Think about the effort it takes to get people reading your blog, following your Twitter feed, viewing your YouTube videos, joining your community, or friending your Facebook page. They all start with zero viewers, but the more they grow, the more powerful they become.
Ad campaigns move at a faster pace. More importantly, they have a beginning and an end. You rent a chance to get some attention for a few months, then you see whether you moved the needle.
Since advertising people often get responsibility for social elements of marketing, this creates a fundamental disconnect. Marketers who tap into these two forms of communication can get whipsawed – the social builds too slowly, and the campaign ends too quickly, to make it easy to synchronize them. Even when they do succeed, there’s huge waste. If you’ve assembled 100,000 customers into a community behind your brand, what happens when you’re done with them? Send them a thank you email and say good bye? That’s a tragic waste.
The answer, as my colleague, Sean Corcoran, discovered in the research behind his report “Using Social Applications In Ad Campaigns”, means thinking of social fans as an asset that you can build with a campaign and then tap over and over again. To do this, you must also make sure you connect with and feed them between campaigns, to keep them interested.
Forrester have just released a new research report called looking at how companies should organise to best deal with social media, which as well as giving the data above, answers the questions “Which roles do we need” and “Which department is in charge”.
They recommend that the best approach to organising for social media is for companies to form “a cross functional team that includes representatives from different departments and groups and is responsible for social media strategy and implementation” – which we agree with. Social media crosses all organisational boundaries, and as we said back in January, the most effective engagements tend to be when we’re working with a combination of the Marketing, PR, Customer Service and Research departments.
The biggest challenge brands often have to overcome isn’t technology but managing cultural change within the enterprise. With an ever-increasing number of brands engaging in social media marketing in recent years, companies need to not only be properly budgeted but also well organized. Once brands experiment with social activities, they must then organize from the inside out — or risk not properly staffing or responding to customers. Brands need to integrate social into their companies by developing a safe place for employees to experiment, creating a process to manage and measure these programs, and integrating social into other marketing and enterprise systems. Above all, brands must organize their companies in the hub-and-spoke model [a cross functional team], which allows business units to be flexible with their social programs — but provides a grounded center that enables the company to act efficiently.
Update: David Armano asks Is The Hub And Spoke Model Adaptable?