If "Social Media" Were A Company, We'd Be Rich.
The role and importance of social marketing are at an all-time high. Actually, let us be more clear... social media is and will remain an undeniable force that dominates the marketing world for the foreseeable future. Social is both an art and a science and to ignore it would be foolish... well unless you're comfortable with being mediocre. Even businesses with that mindset are on a short time horizon to either accepting the reality they need a social media marketing strategy. The more likely scenario - it'll be too late for most who "wait and see". Waiting for some magical unicorn to dispel their fears of something they're unfamiliar with.
In this blog post, "The Rise of Social Media", I don't go into a timeline of events that have lead us to where we are today. Instead, I focus on comparing, at a high-level, the rise of social and decline in traditional Marcom activities - like, public relations.
In fact, if "social media" were a company and we had invested in "it" back in 2008, we'd be billionaires. Or, perhaps quadzillionaires. Data from Google shows the interest and search volume of social media marketing is at its highest levels. Imagine the below chart is a stock ticker...
There's no doubt social media marketing has become more interesting, empowering and insightful. The ability for businesses, brands and everyday people to share their message, instantly (and for free) with their audience is mind-blowingly amazing.
What's equally, if not more amazing are the tools marketers have to target their message to their respective audiences. And, deeply understand their audiences to better connect their content with them.
Realize, today, people can access a near-infinite amount of content anywhere, and anytime, across almost every screen - your social content needs to be timely and relevant. Speaking of social content relevancy, read this blog post where we talk about that and four elements affecting your social campaigns effectiveness.
Side note: If your business or brand isn't on social... your competition says thank you!
Yet many businesses and their marketing teams still rely on traditional marketing methods, like PR. Take a look at the chart below. Similarly to the rise of social media marketing chart, the below chart shows the significant decline and interest in public relations, as an example:
If you or your leadership team (boss) is still skeptical about the "value" or "ROI" etc. of social media, let me ask you this... Where else can you talk to your ideal audience in a timely, quantifiable and most of all conversational way? Here's another question, where else can your marketing content provide you with micro insights into your audiences lifestyle, behaviors and demographics?
Facebook has some great audience insights that marketers can use to effectively deploy their content strategy. Take a look at the graphic below. On the left, it shows Facebook's audience (globally) and a short list of the top lifestyles clusters associated with their audience base. On the right, is a very small sample of the deeper insights gained from understanding your audience's lifestyle cluster. From their financial habits, where they live and what a day-in-the-life is like for that lifestyle cluster.
Unless you are stubborn and not willing to admit it, you cannot deny the power of the insights afforded to marketers through social media. Social media has become an "insights powerhouse".
If you are questioning where to start or even looking to take your established social media marketing program to the next level - let's talk...
One trend we believe will come to life in 2018 is brands like Apple using their platform and products to evolve into what we're calling "Discrete Social Networking". We'll dive deeper into this topic during our next social media blog post.
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