These are exciting times, because Social Media takes “Will it Blend?” to a whole new level with marketers. And for those of us who’ve been in the business for a while—it’s about time!
For years, marketing people and PR folks wore separate hats—had different skill sets, different agendas—even though they share a common purpose. It’s like the FBI and the CIA not talking to each other and sharing information about terrorism—dumb.
Even the birth of digital communications didn’t turn on any light bulbs at first, even made it worse by adding another silo, but the power and exponential growth of social media shows us why it is vital to string it all together.
Branding is the art of becoming known, liked and trusted; marketing is getting someone who has a need to know, like and trust you; PR is shaping and maintaining your image in the eyes of the public. Social Media enables, empowers, and provides the platforms where you can leverage it all… build awareness, amplify your message and build relationships. It’s all about building an emotional connection with people… and it not only blends GREAT… it makes blending to together essential!
It’s not surprising to me that traditional ad agencies are scrambling to morph into “interactive” agencies, “do social,” and blend everything together for the common good. Social media helps savvy marketers not only advertise to their prospects, but also glean information about them—develop relationships with them—and take care of branding, too—all from the same space.
The beauty of this is that your customers and prospects are already there! They’re accessing news, shopping, watching TV, reading their favorite magazines, texting and face-booking, tweeting—with the computers in their pockets. Why not combine your strategies to meet them where they live?
Does that mean we throw out traditional marketing tools and start over? Absolutely not, and I addressed this in my article on Marketing 101 Lessons. However, it does mean that we need to step back and take a look at the big picture, and how social can be integrated to actually amplify our PR and marketing efforts—not work counter to them. The information landscape has changed, so the faster we adapt to this change and figure out new, interesting, fun ways to work within it, the better we can become at developing and nurturing relationships with customers, prospects and partners.
Social allows us to blur the lines between marketing, lead generation and PR—and let’s not forget about customer service. So “Make it Blend,” people!
Well said, 2012 is gonna be huge for social and unfortunately some businesses will be late to the game, allowing their competitors to throttle past them.
We are living in AMAZING times where the playing field is more level than EVER before thanks to the Internet and Social Media.
Nonetheless, the “Big Guys” still have advantages. I’ve learned this the hard way with the cost of re-vamping my own website. Expensive. But, doing it right was not a choice and therefore cost could not be minimized too much (the re-launch is hopefully this coming weekend).
I love the ideas that we now can blend the disciplines of PR and marketing and the whole newer idea of branding, as well.
Thanks Ted for yet another spot-on post!
Your insights are spot on. I believe this year is important from the standpoint of blending the various strategic marketing disciplines into a seamless garment.
A key element will be the internal communications of ideas, trends, and accomplishments that help all departments work on the same objectives.
What will that communications vehicle be? Yammer? Some sort of groupware? Internal twitter?
Thanks for the great comments and for adding to the thought process. Judson… do not forget good old email… IMHO still the best tool for internal corporate communications.
It’s interesting to see a number of PR agencies leading with “social” on their web sites…blurring the lines with Ad agencies – in a good way
Agreed, but the big issue there is that the vast majority of PR agencies do not have a clue of how to properly engage in social media/marketing.