The plethora of Social Media Networks out there is a great way to stay connected, and sustain your social life with family, friends, colleagues, and occasionally… long lost loves.
And brands are jumping on the bandwagon, joining in the frenzy, to get into the conversation… but do they really know what they’re doing? Does it benefit the brand, or the opposite? There is a whole new community of “Social Media specialists” that have seemingly emerged over night, claiming to be able to help brands get social and become the next Old Spice “The Man Your Man Could Smell Like” online campaign sensation. Finding which one is credible is as challenging as deciding which Social Media Network to plunge into. An excerpt from Social Media Consultant, Mark Evans of Mark Evans Consulting sums it up beautifully:
“For the people who are or claim to be Social Media Consultants/Gurus, why would people want to hire you? What differentiates you from others. What have you done to get this title? For those who truly are Social Media Gurus hopefully this will make you stand out. Tired of seeing all these social media consultants pop up.”
From my own experience, advising clients on Brand Building and having the right Social Media & Communication Strategy, I always ask clients to go back to the basics. The brand building process is a multi-faceted exercise, and Social Media – for all its hype – is a great ADDITIONAL channel of communication – but it’s not stand-alone. It must be combined with other (existing. Read: old world) brand building strategies.
Here’s an interesting look at one Social Media player in London that’s gone from online to offline in a very believable (and VISIBLE) way:
LivingSocial deals were promoted recently in London through surprise offers made in a London taxi. Over two days an everyday London taxi ride offered passengers the chance to experience the deals for themselves, with opportunities to go chessboxing, tiger feeding or to take an Aston Martin for a spin. The taxi driver interacted with his passengers using an interactive screen.