Who’s social now?

For all the advertising that happens – for all that paid awareness – the true influence has been word-of-mouth. Don’t get me wrong, awareness is a key element in the process of word-of-mouth. But awareness does not close the sale.

Everyday we are surrounded by so many images and messages that they become environmental wallpaper, blending into the background with sublime camouflage. What is it that makes us take notice?

There has been advertising and marketing for a long time. And the arsenal at the disposal of companies moving those messages keeps increasing. From old-school approaches like billboards to new-fangled enterprises like twitter and pinterest. But for all that exposure, it’s word-of-mouth – still.

Interesting that we are moved by our friends using the same platforms. There is a certain disgust, stand-off that happens when we get a paid ad in our Facebook feed. But, if a friend makes a note about a product, service or even a show you are more likely to consider. So word-of-mouth still exists – it will always exist. All that is changing are the megaphones that we use – it was in person, then the phone, now it’s social media.

What will the future of word-of-mouth be?


message delivered (maybe)

Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, 4Square, E-mail, etc.

There are now so many ways to connect and broadcast that it’s time consuming just to list them.

At what point does it become burdensome to just to try and keep up. There are some services that connect and cross broadcast (like this Blog – it gets publicized through Twitter, Facebook, LinkedIn, e-mail list and Subscribers once I press the publish button). The idea of one button pushing out content to a myriad outlets is ideal.

But once we get the message out – how do we know that it gets to where it needs to be (in front of a pair of eyes – man I’m going to get a load of hate-mail from the cyclops Society of Canada). How do we really measure that result? It’s not just a question of broadcast math.

My blog is (according to my WordPress stats) broadcast to 750+ people on Facebook, 50+ followers on Twitter and 300+ connections on LinkedIn. Plus about 15 people have subscribed to this Blog. That’s the broadcast math. My daily viewing stats are much more humbling – in and around 10-20 views per day when I’m generating new content.

So – that’s a big difference. I would love to be in a better position. One day. But producing content (and content worth reading) is key. Above and beyond that sometimes it’s luck, finding a niché, or getting recognition in other venues (speakers, being quoted in an article, etc.). Which ultimately becomes a weird vicious circle.

How often do you check or block content from people that constantly are broadcasting? Do you find yourself using curating apps/sites (like Zite, FlipBoard, Currents, etc.) to help filter and consolidate topics or areas of concern and interest?

What’s the intent?

Too often lately we, as an industry, are concerned with how we are getting a message across (social media, print, out-of-home, broadcast, experiential, etc.).

We need to make sure that the client is clear on the intent – awareness, sales, etc. – of any campaign (or project). When the client does not have a clear vision of what they would like to achieve, we don’t know where we should end up.

And if we don’t know where to end up – we sure as hell won’t know how to get there (or what vehicles to use).

Do your projects have clearly defined objectives?