Facing the pure intention of social media versus advertising, we have to admit that we are talking about an antithesis – no matter if you can book advertising on a social networks or not. Social Media is conversations while advertising is the monologue from company to customer. And in between lies some undefined (or shall we say unqualified) customer dialogue that we have been through for years of online advertising.
So, how can we explain this type of modern ‘customer engagement setting’ to C-level executives? How can we bring these two anti-poles together? What could have been a better idea than asking to the people that have been through this process of explaining, evaluating and engaging C-levels from both sides – platform owners and brand companies.
Maybe you want to listen to their thoughts…
Blake Chandlee, vice president and commercial director EMEA, Facebook (recorded after the DMEXCO panel ‘social media and advertising’) – sees the biggest challenges in the evolution from their traditional management roles of strategy and investement thinking towards a new business world called ‘social networking’.
Tony Douglas, Innovation Manager, BMW Group – advices to make senior management aware of the potential that social media offers, and knows off the trial-and-error process companies might be going through.
“Firstly you have to get the channels on the agenda that means you have to convince/demonstrate to senior management that the channels are relevant i.e. they are a valuable addition to the marketing communication mix. Just because you have a new channel does not mean you have more budget so you have to prove that this “new” channel is better than some “old” one only then will you get a shift in budget.
Social media and “advertising” are two very odd bed fellows…you cannot do a traditional banner campaign in social media it does not work you need to target and get your context and content right. “Targeting” is also a new science so you have to educate the C-level on what this is. The content is not one size fits all as is often the case with ATL content….here we are talking a mass of niches. However the really tough bit you have to be social now that can be a real challenge. I think it’s fair to say that not many professional marketers have been schooled in how to be social (in marketing). This is new ground for many marketers and brands and like all new stuff it takes time to adapt and learn.
So start early, start small, learn by doing and adapt quickly and if you demonstrate success and a greater return on investment you’ll find those obstacles and challenges will disappear. They are disappearing in the BMW Group.”
Tim Meier, Brand Manager, Bacardi – focuses on the customer dialogue as the main point for his argumentation.
“Generally speaking, it is necessary to enhance top management understanding of social media as a qualitative target group related dialogue communication opportunity. Any figures to measure social media ROI need to be accompanied by the level of qualitative consumer references. In how far are you able to define the GRP level of a positive brand related post from a celebrity/opinion leader? Social Media will certainly emancipate as an equal part of the marketing mix to support future brand campaigns on the image level. Nevertheless you´ll be rewarded with additional coverage if you´re doing a good job and offer a consumer relevant content.”
It would be interesting to get some more views on how we can help making C-levels understand the values of social media quicker, better or more accurate. If we don’t do it, your customers might become the teachers of modern successful customer engagement – but this might be painful for your companies brand. So maybe you and your company are in the same process of evaluating social media and advertising. Wanna share your knowledge with us…
Looking forward to it.