The battle for attention becoming more difficult. People are turning their back to advertising and traditional PR. They are much more interested in what their peers think of a product or service, they do research online, visit the reviews sites. And they are using social media for that. They want to engage and interact with organisations trying to sell them products or services.
Actually, any person or organization can now act as a media company and create awareness, inform and entertain people. Think of YouTube Channels. Or Twitter as customer service channel (best example here is KLM who has moved most of its passenger service to Twitter). And from a “PR 2.0″ perspective: clipping and editing relevant news from social media networks, creating ‘social media news releases’, maintaining ‘social media newsrooms’ and sending this out to multiple online channels and social media networks to reach your target audience.
Rather than buying advertising time and space, organisations should look at ways to source, create and publish engaging, relevant and inspiring content to the social Web. Not only does this add to building awareness, increasing trust in you and your products and services, it is also much more cost-effective and through the viral affect of social media can reach and engage the audience much better than traditional advertising and PR. Bloggers now how powerful maintaining a blog can be. Bloggers also know they cannot be successful if they use blogs, tweets and messages only to beat their chests. Like the traditional marketeers and advertisers are still doing. This also goes for organisations working in MICE, tourism and destination marketing. And we can help with setting this up and more.
Another difference is that marketeers should not be thinking only in ‘campaigns’ anymore. As a matter of fact the notion of a ‘social media campaign’ is in fact a contradiction in terms. And if you look closer most social media campaigns are advertising campaigns in disguise. And people do not like that (see above in this post). Engaging people with social media and creating engaging content is an on-going process and not just a one-off of short-term promotional activity. We will have to re-educate our organisation!
So in new marketing content has finally become king. Long live the king!