Using Social Networking Sites To Tune In or Tune Out?


I was on Facebook yesterday when I saw my friend Ellin’s update and post of this picture.

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© Good Lord Above on Facebook

The shared photo was created by a satirist who goes by the name  ‘Good Lord Above’.  You can read his witty and relevant commentary on Facebook. He is wildly popular and to date has received 1,000,000 ‘Likes’.

PROVOKING A RESPONSE

The bite of the  message was shocking and stopped me in my tracks. Clearly, “God” as he is sometimes called, was poking fun at the collective outrage displayed on social media outlets concerning the casting of Ben Affleck as Batman the day before. Could Affleck generate more social interest than Syrian dictator Bashar al-Assad’s alleged gassing of his own people? As many as 1300 people had recently died in the latest attempt to quell a civilian uprising.  Yet, a great deal of the buzz on social media was whether Affleck was the right choice for a movie not yet shot and due for release in 2015. The irony, Affleck is a humanitarian in his own right and has lent his fame to highlight the plight of Congolese refugees.

DO WE TUNE IN TO TUNE OUT ?

Where was the uniform moral outrage about Syria instead of Affleck? We live in a world where we have never been more accessible to people and the sharing of information instantly. And yet, I think at times we have become increasingly superficial and disconnected from each other.  So, I am asking the question: Are social networking sites to blame? The cool thing about social media was the notion it could bring society and people even closer. In fact, Facebook – the mother of all things social media – states their mission is to give people the power to share and make the world more open and connected. I think our fascination with Facebook, Twitter, Google+, YouTube, and Pinterest is having the opposite effect. Now you can share and connect without leaving home or even speaking to people. Compared to our grandparents or even our parents, we appear to live in a more isolated and disconnected world. Can we really be alone while living with 7 billion other people?

Another friend, who is a wellness professional, recently used her Facebook page to implore her male friends and family members to request ultrasounds to detect early signs of  kidney cancer. She was spurred to write the post because a friend (the 5th one to be exact) had recently confided he had been diagnosed with kidney cancer.  She had also lost a cousin far too young to that same disease so this is a cause she understands first-hand. To her amazement, her friends and extended family were far more interested in knowing who the sick friend was. The superficiality and gossip held far more interest than the important warning.  She was shocked.

 ILLUSION OF CONTROL IN A WORLD GONE MAD

Long before the Internet, people took their message to the people to affect change. People naïvely wrote their government officials; protested, sat-in or marched  to be heard. What would have happened to the Civil Rights Movement if it had been launched via the Internet?  As we mark the upcoming 50th anniversary of Dr. Martin Luther King’s ‘I had a dream speech’ at the end of August,  it is timely to ask if it would have had the  same impact  had he posted it on LinkedIn and Facebook. Now, success would be measured by the amount “Likes” or “Retweets”? Dr. King’s oratory skill and passion would have been lost if communicated through most social media channels….YouTube would have been the exception. The impact of having 250,000 people marching to the Lincoln Memorial united for change and hear Dr. King deliver his speech would have been lost as well.

Perhaps in a world often out of control, social network sites allow us to block out the bad and focus on what we deem relevant.  By and large, it is an environment you can create and control. These sites tend to form people into groups who all have the same point of view and opinion. It is the illusion of control in a world sometimes gone mad.

Does social media allow you to tune in or to tune out?

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The future becomes even more friendly-social media predictions for 2013


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New Year’s has always been a time for reflection and looking forward to what will be. Many of us (almost 40%) plan on improving, progressing and bettering ourselves personally as well as professionally. It is with this in mind that I sit down to write my first blog of 2013.

Professional Growth

In reflection, 2012 was my year of professional growth. I stopped talking about Social Media and started walking the walk with my  own marketing blog. I also committed to being more active on Twitter and LinkedIn and sharing my professional insights and observations. And I created my Pinterest page.

2013 Predictions and Prophecies

Many of my fellow marketing bloggers have also wasted no time wading into the marketing prognostication pool for 2013.  It seems we all agree 2013 will be exciting and subject to rapid change. Perhaps the key takeaway? The consumer will continue to stay in control of the mediums and how they interact with the messaging,

Here are some other interesting trends to take note for the coming year:

• Mobile marketing has finally come of age and maturity due to smartphones and the mobile internet. It will no longer be
considered an after thought in marketing campaigns and tactics.

• There is no much more to social media life than Facebook, LinkedIn and Twitter.  To reach your customer/audience, an increased
focus will be paid to Google+ and to more non-traditional social channels like SlideShare, Pinterest, Flickr/Picasa/Instagram
and discussion forums and question areas.

• Companies are recognizing and embracing the power of retail time marketing content to build deeper relationships with
customers and increase sales. Newsjacking will be key to being found on-line and delivering the appropriate message.

•  Companies will convert consumers into friends and friends into customers by building their web presence. Once they receive
permission and validation these companies will then develop the appropriate tactics to maximize that dialogue.

• Companies with large brand footprints such as Nike and Coca-Cola are bringing their social media and content marketing
activities in-house as opposed to leaving it to their digital agencies to handle. In doing so, they are now able to build a more intimate relationship with their social community and produce the editorial content they would like to tell.

• Integrated social marketing gains further momentum and the use of e-mail continues to remain strong but there will be an increased  focus personalization and real time communication. As an example, you now receive location-based phone texts and  e-mails as you walk by a retail location with a special offer. The opportunity is personalized and the message delivery is timely.

• Some new application or platform will come along to energize the marketplace.  It may be just like Pinterest or Instagram. At one point, few people knew of these applications, and then suddenly, everyone was using it.

What are your predictions for 2013?

 

Facebook switches to Targeting Advertising Business Model


Interesting read from “Business Insider” on how Facebook originally structured it’s advertising business on old media metrics and subsequently put the company’s monetization strategy behind schedule, and with it, the opportunity to lead the commercializing of the digital advertising business. It is important to note that Facebook still generated just under $5 billion dollars in advertising revenue last year.

Now with the launch of Facebook Exchange (better known as FBX in the industry) this summer, the company is focused on selling re-targeting ads (cookie-based ads focused on intent or interest in a product/category) vs. consumer profile (demographics). The good news for Facebook is that re-targeting ads should be a growth engine for the company and start to deliver a greater return and increased Shareholder Value.

Read more: http://www.businessinsider.com/facebook-fbx-2012-9#ixzz27gDq4TCx