Yesterday, I was reading this blog post where social media was re-defined as conversational media — or as I am going to call it conversational marketing.
Let’s face it, social media is about conversation. It is about spreading a message, an idea or a story. But at its foundation it is marketing, because what is marketing but spreading an idea, a story or a message.
Unfortunately, most people are spreading manure and pumping up their own egos. How many were not very good at traditional marketing? Ego doesn’t work well in marketing because it isn’t about YOU, it’s about THEM. The Client. The Customer. The Ratepayer. The Prospect.
Marketing is about getting attention. That’s why people talk about eyeballs and the number of followers or some other metric. It is about Engagement and Listeners. Jeffrey Gitomer asks, “Would you rather have a loyal wife or a satisfied one?”
The same with your followers. Sure, 10K people following you strokes your ego, but if no one is listening or responding or re-tweeting or commenting, what’s the point?
There is a story about 1000 customers being profitable. And 2000 customers makes you lots of profit.
There’s also the mental limit of about 250 – that’s about all the people we can effectively remember and engage with. People with a network of more than 5,000 will tell you it’s possible but I’m going to stick with you can have a Rolodex of thousands, but can only maintain a relationship with about 250.
That brings us around to sales: in sales, it’s about the relationship. They have to like you and trust you to buy from you in most cases.
We forget in this digital age that pre-Internet, PR, marketing, advertising and branding were not always done under one roof. There are still many firms that just handle publicity. Still others only handle branding; while others just do advertising. It’s all under the Marketing umbrella, but they are different arms of that octopus.
Remember too, that in traditional advertising, there was a media buy component and a creative piece. The creative piece was the charge to come up with the campaign – whether it was the story board for the commercial (TV or radio) or the billboard and newsprint ads. The firm created the story that would resonate with your target audience. (Unless it was just a cool ad to win an ADDY, which also happened. A lot.)
The firm would do the media buy for a commission to get your ad on the radio – on the right radio station that hit your demographics; or on the right TV channel, on the targeted TV show, aimed at a targeted demographic. Or the same with a newspaper or magazine ad: who is the target demographic and what do they read.
We seemed to have forgotten all that in the online marketing world. We don’t story board or check where the demographic is or target like a sharpshooter. Instead, we aim for numbers and noise and throwing spaghetti against the wall to see what sticks. If you are going to spend the time, the effort and the money, do it right. The Internet has a long memory.