A simple video presenting a visual illustration of social media in a way that is easy to understand.
In conclusion, the tendency for big brands to look to the social networking sphere for sales first is clearly mistaken. There are other tangible results to be attained in this marketing space that will ultimately drive sales if messages are carefully crafted and implemented. Looking to the social networking market place to build brand identity, loyalty and integration should be at the top of the list for marketers in this field. Like it or not, the participants in the the social market place are culturally biased to reject direct marketing messages and campaigns. Keeping in constant contact with your audience and ensuring that conversations are meaningful, directed and and action oriented is the basis for ensuring that your marketing messages have the desired impact. Creating content from a third person perspective that engages consumers with compelling stories, eliciting meaningful conversation and engaging the target market in the desired action is the most effective way to leverage the social network marketing sphere. ~ David C. Skul
There are some basic ways to control these unscripted conversations. First you must clearly define the facts of any message, comment or situation. Second, you will need to carefully forge an emotional connection with your responses to these facts. Third, explore all of the various alternatives to the message, comments or situations. Fourth, you must mutually agree upon a commitment to action that is measurable. Marketers must ensure that they avoid skipping any stage of this process during a conversation or the commitments that result from such undisciplined discussions will often be shaky and unreliable. When you engage in multiple conversations, tendencies to rely upon passionate champions (individuals who can make a difference in achieving the marketers’s overall message strategy) to communicate on behalf of your cause is tempting. But beware of this pitfall, it is not advisable to empower these passionate champions because in some cases they implement their own agenda. Instead, enlist them in joint causes. Through powerful conversation keep in close touch and ensure the agenda of your messages remains aligned.~ David C. Skul
This third person position is also the most effective way to engage and influence the social networking sphere. The major difference in the marketing model exist in the speed at which the message takes shape, is responded to and dies out. The speed at which new messages must be developed for the social media sphere is demanding. Multiple messages and multiple conversations occur in parallel and throughout the social media marketing lifespan. This makes the challenge of positioning brands challenging. If carefully planed, the messages that marketers place into the social networking sphere will be incorporated through a similar type of catharsis into the lives of those that interact with them and those that bear witness to this interaction.
Creating content that is relevant and encourages meaningful conversation is based upon the premise of telling stories about your target audience (from their point of view) while placing your product or service in their scope of use. Remember the overview of the Redbull facebook page earlier in this document. Redbull does a fantastic job of creating content that appears to be told by the users of the product. Some of these messages are created by the users themselves as well. The stories involve everyday consumers that typically incorporate the use of the product to overcome some type of issue or problem in their lives. For example, the story I read where a student that worked full time had only 24 hours to study for a major exam and by using Redbull was able to concentrate and maintain the discipline to study and be successful when the test was taken. The other story I read was about a young mother who was working full time and had very little energy when she got home to her children. Through the use of Redbull she was able to enhance her family life and have a positive impact on the lives of her children. Whether or not we agree with the use of this product, the results are clear. People identify with the character, have meaningful conversations about the story and integrate this message (along with the brand) into their lives. ~ David C. Skul
The new boundaries present challenges to marketers. They must think outside of the box to position their brands effectively using social media. This, third person position, type of thinking can be challenging to many traditional marketers. Traditionally, pushing a message at your audiences and waiting to see sales or actions add up was the way most marketers measured success. This type of measurement is latent and it is rarely effective in heading off campaign failures. Social media gives us an ability to sample, test and adjust campaigns in real time. There are ways to mathematically predict results of campaigns. Social media spheres demand a different type of marketing message. This new type of message resembles that of the entertainment industry most closely.
The movie entertainment industry is the most comparable marketing model to the social networking sphere. Major motion pictures are viewed at local movie theaters, on pay-per-view, or DVD. These movies are promoted vigorously through internet, television and print media. As a result, large portions of the market place views these films. Brands market within movies by using a third person position. The characters in the movie use several products and services while the story plays out. Through our connection to the story and the character a type of catharsis occurs. Over time, people tend to integrate these messages into their lives. Their identification with real or imagined experiences shapes the way they live, the way they buy and what they buy. ~ David C. Skul