I know — consumers are in control. Brands feel as if they must dive right in to social media and participate. But some do hold back. And the hesitation is understandable because maybe they know deep down they shouldn’t dive in — or need to consider in what ways they want to. Maybe the brand is not a follower, maybe it doesn’t have to check off that box of “chatting with customers.” Maybe it’s a leader and is just getting confused by this being, for the moment, the age of following. A question to ask is, “Should I be joining the conversation or is that a cop-out?” Maybe what some marketers should be doing is stimulating other people to have a conversation about them. All the new social media tools are not about brands, but are about empowering communication among regular people. —
When Silence Can Be Golden
Great, great post from Adweek. Well worth the read.
Social media people recoil sometimes at the notion that sales and commercialism can be part of what we do. That the connections and conversations we’re facilitating are driven to enhancing nothing more than the bottom line. So instead, we talk of furry cuddly things, of relationships and people connections. Those do matter. But: Instead: Sales are the ultimate success metric. The notion is that better relationships, better communication, more people that like us all eventually drive dollar signs. That’s okay. That’s why we’re in business after all (and even if you’re a non profit, this counts for your donations, too). Make sure your social media strategy explains how you’re going to help the company ultimately get its bills paid and make the shareholders happy, even if it’s not a direct revenue channel itself. The relationships and conversations and openness along the way are catalysts for growth. — 7 Deadly Mistakes in Selling Social Media | Altitude Branding | Brand Elevation through Social Media
Managing a brand has always been a slightly odd concept, given that consumers are the real arbiters of brand meaning, and it’s become increasingly outmoded in today’s two-way world. That’s why a new report is going to recommend changing the name “brand manager” to “brand advocate,” and fundamentally changing marketer organizations in response to the onset of the digital age.
The report, due out next week from Forrester, finally puts the onus on marketers to change their structures — a welcome conclusion for media owners and agencies who keep hearing how they should change, but often complain that their clients have done little to shift their organizations to cope with an increasingly complex world of media fragmentation and rising retailer and consumer power. The new “brand advocates,” as Forrester suggests renaming the role, will be seemingly more powerful and consumer-centric, much nimbler, and more real-time-oriented than the brand manager of today — and they will be a lot more opportunistic in creating media partnerships, and a lot less loyal to their agencies. —
Why It’s Time to Do Away With the Brand Manager - Advertising Age - CMO Strategy
Totally agree with this post. Brand managers need to shift their current roles. Brand managers ultimately need to become community managers; helping and enabling the community themselves to actually become owners of the brand’s direction.
but only a company that has been engineered from the ground up to support a culture of human business has the ability to empower that employee to actually be human —
What’s Wrong With Social Media Marketing Strategy
Absolutely a MUST READ. Yes, I put that all in capitals.
Most companies are not in the business of publishing content. But in order to compete on an internet that is increasingly participatory and social, both now and in the future, companies will need to work hard and smart when it comes to publishing useful content that both search engines and customers will love. —
User Generated Content: Basics of UGC for SEO - Online Marketing Blog
Well worth a read.
What’s Next In Marketing And Advertising (2009)
[Brands, which are often untrusted, must develop advocacy programs to influence their market. Despite good intentions, several risks could result in mistrust and even backlash from those they seek to impress] — Checklist: Develop a Successful Advocacy Program « Web Strategy by Jeremiah Owyang | Social Media, Web Marketing