I often wonder who calls the shots. Some how the older I get the more important that is to me. I like leadership. I also believe in followers too. There’s nothing wrong with people following. Thought leadership? I like that term too. People that push the envelope of thinking in marketing, social media and technology are leaders.
I love “what if” questions too.
But in social media, though leadership is needed and is important, except that it’s the crowd that steers the ship. The mob dictates. Viral determines. On Youtube, sensationalism seems to rule. Humor dominates. Getting hurt drives traffic. Perez Hilton is a must read. Jason Calacanis and Michael Arrington shift the tide. Why is that? No longer does big media/ mass media call the shots. The fourth estate is and was the dog and yet it no longer wags its own tail. The user calls the shots. The tail wags the dog.
That isn’t such a bad thing except…
Our thirst and their thirst too, is now satiated by the envelope that was once here and now is here…
Which begs the question, “Where will this put us in 5 years?” I’m not afraid of the tech aspect of that question. That is exciting. I’m just wondering where the standards and where our ethics, morals and norms will be in that time. The more that UGC( user generated content) explodes on the scene and continues to permeate every pore of our online being, the more desensitized we become, which means, we’ll want more. Our expectations and our needs become greater. Almost to the extent that even governing bodies might start letting down their guard.
Face it, we’re becoming UGC users and junkies; and where our fix comes from next (the technology) is not as important as how strong the next fix will need to be just to function or satisfy our demand.
There’s not a thing we can do about it either.
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Two agencies compete in a head-to-head pitch for a fictitious project based around the film “Casablanca.” live in front of several hundred people at iMedia’s Entertainment Marketing Summit
Doug Schumacher and his badass team at Basement, won the pitch. Here is the marketing strategy and creative thinking that won them the fictitious gig. Pay attention especially to the social media plan within the slides.
Here is the premise for the pitch:
“Shortly after winning the 1943 Academy Award for Best Picture, all the prints of ‘Casablanca’ were mysteriously lost. Although many stills, newspaper accounts, magazine articles and subsequent interviews with the stars of the film have long been available, nobody has seen ‘Casablanca’ since 1943.
“Then, in January 2008, an archivist stumbled across the prints in the Warner Bros. Burbank, Calif. lot. Excited by this discovery, Warner Bros. has chosen to do a limited theatrical re-release of this great but long-missing film.”
The hypothetical re-release would be for Valentine’s Day weekend, 2009. The budget to work with was $350K-$500K for creative development and non-paid media, and $1,000,000 in paid media.
Here is the competitive landscape:
- A Matthew McConaughey/Kate Hudson romantic comedy opening on the same day and date
- A Michael Bay war-action-adventure flick, set in Iraq in a bit of counter-programming; same opening day and date
- A long-awaited two-part “More Sex and the City” is airing on TNT, part one on Valentine’s Day eve
Here are the slides:
I don’t know how much I reference Seth Godin but I guess it’s for good reason. I like what he says about marketing, because he uses a ton of analogies and for me, thats a good thing. I need examples, real world or not, but I need colorful descriptive analogous ways for me to wrap my arms around complex ideas and simple ethereal notions.
With that being said, I was reading something over the weekend and was re-reading an old post by him in which he says the following:
Worry about people with passion and people with lots of friends. You need both for ideas to spread.
I’ve been writing alot lately about social media experts and last week actually compiled a list of what social media is not and subsequently received a tremendous amount of answers, but essentially the underlying theme is this: if you were to couple the question of what social media is not with the experts that are the in the social media marketing space, what you and i are looking for is TRUST. Trust that what I’m hearing is legit. Trust that what I’m reading is applicable. Trust that I can utilize social media to connect with my audience, my customers, and my users. Trust that social media is not just a buzzword. Trust that social media and it’s experts are not just caught up in the jetstream.
One of the other underlying themes of social media marketing, as a marketer, as someone dipping their toes in the proverbial waters of soaicl media, is how do you segment what you are hearing, what you are reading and what who you are listening to?, How do you separate fact from fiction, How do you know? How do you know what you know,? How do you know they know? I know it sounds sort of like a comedy routine but…
I know that there are some companies out there that do it right but Im going to guess that for every company that does it right, there are 5 who say they can and never have, in their efforts to capitolize on the trend. But trust in any setting business or otherwise, determines the outcome of any engagement, it requires a tremndous leap of faith. Just like marriage. or any type of relationship for that matter.
So going forward, as you venture in, who do you trust/ and why should you trust them? Does someone who has expert status warrant your trust? It reminds me of the time where our company needed a Cisco engineer to come out and do some work for us. At the time, his rate might have been $150 an hour. The company said, they were sending out the very best they had, their heavy hitter… So we waited, and about an hour after he was supposed to show, in walks this guy- a bit disheveled, sunglasses on, mumbles that he’s from Cisco. He comes with nothing, no laptop, no pen, paper, nothing, knapsack. I repeate…nothing! Oh and he wreaks of alcohol… First impression? Not so good… But it gets better.
So the guy asks about 5 or 6 questions sits down at a terminal, works for under an hour, gets up and says,”You’re all set”, and leaves. WTF? Blink blink.. ala South Park. We’re screwed.
Bottom Line? It was done perfectly. He was a heavy hitter, he did his thing and he did it well. Though outward impressions notwithstanding, this guy rocked the house.
The morals of the story are many. Do you go with your gut, let them do their thing, and sit back and see what they produce? Perception is not always reality? Go with what people tell you and trust them?. Word of mouth, in this case was correct? Company hype was dead on? It’s ok to trust the disheveled engineer whos breath wreaks of alcohol? Cisco engineers rock?
Ok so you’re asking “So what are the parallels to social media marketing you ask? Well, per Seths point, when deciding what to believe and not believe, in regards to social media you can go 2 ways. You can listen to the person who has a huge following and is passionate or you can listen to the person who talks the talk on their website but does not have much more than tha,t that can be substantiated.
Case in point, when reading about social media marketing on blog sites i would want to read someones blog who has been around no less than a year or longer and or someone who has a pretty solid base of followers and is passionate and or someone who might be on the agency side who ‘does” or “is” the social media marketing person at that agency and has chosen to blog about it.
Who would you trust? Who would I trust? That will be in part II