Saturday, 7 November 2009


In our experience, we’ve found that Brands adverse to Social Media are typically also adverse to the democratizing nature of the Internet in general.    They just can’t get used to the fact that the world is no longer their soapbox!  For the past fifty years getting consumers attention was based on a simple formula; “he who shouts loudest wins.”  However, a convergence of forces has rendered this simple formula for success completely obsolete.  We just wanted to be the one to tell you in case you didn’t know.

Today’s time-starved consumers are increasingly seeking individual attention and they no longer value simple goods and/ or services.  Instead, they value experiences through which they are directly engaged, and this directly affects the way you communicate with your customers.  

The hard and simple truth is that the days of corporate monologues are dead.   We live in a world today where brands cannot simply push messages anymore. Today, brands must do. They must engage with their customers (and across every platform, channel and device). In this new online world — actions speak louder than advertising— and a ‘one-size fits-all’ message or offer only alienates today’s savvy consumers.  The bottom line is that we all like to feel ‘special’ and want to engage (and be engaged) individually and on our own terms (based upon our unique interests and characteristics.)  

This is the beauty of brands leveraging Social Media tools as they extend an opportunity for earnest two-way brand dialogue (where the actual conversations are taking place.) 

Social Media allows brands to actively engage consumers directly on there terms in real-time.  By so doing, brands can affect the entire (associated/extended) community (and every search result thereafter.)  This is because of a number of reasons, primarily the power of group psychology.  Psychologically, ‘sense of community’ is one of the major tenants of self-definition. To be part of the group gives meaning and association with a larger group provides emotional safety and a sense of belonging and identification. The influence is also bi-directional. This sense of belonging to a larger group or community can involve many things ranging from language, to dress, and/or rituals.   Why is this so powerful? Simply because we enjoy watching and empathizing with, people just like ourselves. 

Brands therefore need to socialize online today in ways that increase their relevance and value in the eyes of their consumers.  Brands must ensure a credible social voice is extended and consumers sense a symmetrical (two-way) relationship.  This is where we come in.  What can we help your brand accomplish online?  

For more information, please contact Andrew Giles (

Monday, 2 November 2009


When most of us think “social media marketing” we initially jump to notables like Facebook, Twitter, YouTube and MySpace. This stems to reason given their mass appeal and broad user-bases.  However, deciding where to invest your time and energy depends entirely on your objectives.  As demonstrated by the Hitwise data, there are a number of other communities that you may be overlooking. 

A recent article with Scott Monty (who runs social media efforts for the Ford Motor Company,) identified that they (Ford) use social media essentially because a.) That’s where discussions are taking place that are relevant to them, and b.) Ford need to be a part of these conversations “in a way that humanizes the company at every turn.”  To ensure they remain relevant, the Ford Motor Company uses Twitter, Facebook, Flickr, YouTube, Scribd, and Delicious (amongst other social properties), and constantly monitors new emerging platforms and user-communities to see where people are going and the latest trends online. 

Have you considered sites like Tagged or Yahoo Profiles/Groups to find your influencers? Are you considering forums (and other segmented groups) that specifically pertain to your niche? Forums and focused communities can in some cases prove to be more valuable tools than much larger user-groups like Facebook or Twitter.  This is because you’re extending the right message to the right person at the right time.  Over and over again it's been proven - - in this new media landscape one needs to be thinking more sniper-rifle and less shotgun. ;)

NOTE: This [September 2009] Hitwise data from which MarketingCharts compiled the above graph is based on US market share of visits - -as defined by the IAB, which is the percentage of online traffic to the domain or category, from Hitwise's sample of 10 million US Internet users.