Time and time again the ‘Social Media’ I consume includes headlines and links to content extolling social media as a panacea to all brand communications.
I’m sorry to tell you Social Media does not exist anymore. It has gone the way of Web 2.0.
It is an outdated business term used to capture the opportunities to communicate with others across the Internet.
If you are intending to use Social Media to achieve your business objectives, you’ve missed the point (and the boat).
People communicating to other people truthfully, positively and with a common purpose are being social.
There are media channels online you can use that will assist you make friends.
If you as an individual post content intended for your family and friends you are being social.
If you as an individual are communicating with like-minded people on a website or app, you are being social. You are making friends.
If you as a brand post content intended for your target audience, then you are seeking to attract attention, create value and even make a call to action.
That is not social, that is selling.
There’s nothing social about banging out content in the hope that you’ll persuade people to buy something (a product, service or perception).
You are not trying to make friends for a mutually beneficial relationship. Life-time value and Tribes included.
Whether you just post content for organic opportunities, or to promote content through paid amplification (aka advertising), you are not being social.
Sure you can sell once you build relationships through media channels that allow it. But I would argue you’re not being social.
Being social by definition has no other purpose.
Why is a social media agency dismissing social media
We sell help and assistance with ‘Social Media Marketing’. So what should we call the plethora of online channels that provide opportunities to sell?
Well as soon as your purpose is to benefit from interaction you are marketing. So that bit is correct.
We make recommendations on which channels to use to pursue marketing objectives, so we’ve got media correct too.
The only difference between advertising or getting written about in the press, on radio or TV and advertising or getting talked about on Twitter, Facebook, LinkedIn or Instagram is the technology.
And because newspapers, radio and stations are available on our smartphones, on demand, wherever we are – they are just as online.
Online Media Marketing sounds more accurate and honest, but businesses will not recognise that term – yet.
So we’ll continue calling it by the name most businesses recognise until then. Because we understand how people recognise symbols and meaning.
But then we’ll tell them –
‘it is not social – it is selling’.
We are not offering help with Social Media Marketing.
We are offering help with selling.
By creating marketing strategies and executing marketing communications tactics that begin with capturing the intended audience’s attention.