WOLFBITES - Issue 48
Advertising in the age of ME-dia
I have always thought social media was a twin-edged sword – great for the tiny minority who understood and embraced that it was all about ME, horrible for the majority who are bewildered by ME advertising.
Let me explain. The most empowering aspect of social media is that it is totally democratic. Anyone can do it. The big media companies (radio and TV stations, city newspapers, outdoor advertising owners) no longer call the shots.
So you can do great business without ever spending hundreds or even thousands of dollars on a print ad, a flyer, a radio commercial or a TV spot. That's old news. Now you can stake out a spot on social media and own it without spending a single dollar. How cool is that?
But here's the rub. It takes a special mix of skill, guts and determination to be a success in social media, which contrary to the popular belief is not easy. Take Facebook, for example. It's an acronym-heavy world full of terms and terminology that will daze and confuse the average small business person.
How about you? Do you know what the term A/B testing means? What's the difference between "Reach" and "Impressions"? Are you a whiz at bidding and optimization? What's the difference between boosting a post and creating an "Ad set"?
Got all that? Great. But it matters not a bit if you don't know how to write a headline. (There are ten basic constructs, the art comes in choosing the right one for your ad).
And don't assume that the other social media advertising platforms work the same as Facebook. They don't. It takes many hours to figure everything out – and many more to launch campaigns. Are you up for that? Do you even have the time?
This should be sobering for any small business owner, but there are still some who say none of this matters because they are going to win fame and riches by becoming the next great Influencer. There's nothing more ME than being an Influencer. You don't really have to do much. You certainly don't do anything as lame as place an ad. You just like something – and because you like it, thousands of others like it, and before you know it, thousands of dollars are rolling in from companies that want you to like what they do.
Or maybe you are going to be the next YouTube star. That sounds easy. You just post a few videos. People love the videos and share them with friends, who share them with friends – and before you know it hundreds of thousands have subscribed to your channel. Instant riches! You might even show up on the talk show circuit. Along with the other stars of the Social Media universe, like Kim Kardashian (60 million Twitter followers), Ellen DeGeneres (77 million followers), Barack Obama (101 million followers) and the Queen of Twitter, Katy Perry (109 million followers), proving she is a marketer who sings, not the reverse.
One last thing: do you know what Kim, Ellen and Katy all have in common? It's the dirty, rotten secret of social media: their massive increases in followers were generated by – wait for it – exposure in traditional media.
|Wolfgang Franke is President & Creative Director of Words at Work Advertising & Marketing, a full service communications company established in 1988. Our growing list of valued clients are found throughout our local market, Markham and the Greater Toronto area, across Canada in cities such as London, Ontario, and Edmonton, Alberta, and an expanding list of international locations ranging from The Big Apple in New York to Kanturk, Ireland.|
Mini WolfBites 4
Being BIG in one tightly defined market is far better than being small in multiple markets.
Understand the pain/price balance – for a lower price, the customer will absorb a lot of pain; for a higher price, the customer expects little or no pain.