Posts Tagged 'Social Media'

The End of the Homepage

Will I share your branded content?

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The first public homepage back in 1992 must have looked a bit like this W3C page. This new way of publishing your message brought us a complete shift in information culture. But will Social Media eventually kill the homepage?

Recently serious publications dare to announce the end of the brand website as we know them. We quote Graham Hodge, branded content director at digital agency LBi:

Within budgetary constraints, marketers should not perceive an ‘either-or’ situation. ‘There is certainly plenty of life in brand websites, especially if you enjoy a transactional relationship with your customers,’ he adds. ‘However, it is naive to invest a lot of money in a destination website and not support it with activity that engages audiences out there, where they spend the bulk of their time online.

Should this be a sign to all developers? If Coca Cola, Nike, Audi are putting less effort in trying to get people to their branded content sites, why make your own little information isles? Are they about to be extinct? Forgotten by the on line consumers and neglected by content developers?

A fact of life is that anybody can only hold up some many websites and information channels. Companies struggle to feed their company website, campaign websites, blog posts, twitter feeds, facebook pages with up-to-date and relevant content. It is no more than logical that the static website will lose. Or do you still see the social media as a hype?

Based on the latest news from Brand Republic.

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Budget redesign

Coins and banknotes, two of the most common ph...
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Social media, search engine optimization, e-mail marketing, adwords,……… What is the impact on your business? But another question is, What impact does it have on the allocation of funds within your budget? Just adding people to use the new technologies in your favor is probably not an option. Something has to give. In most organizations the amount that can be invested in marketing communication and in other marketing responsibilities (research, product development) will not be allowed to grow. What will the marketing department have to give up in order to invest in the future? You can’t have it all mister marketing manager!

Again the necessity of spending a lot of attention on accountability of everything marketing is investing money on will be key to deciding on what to keep and what to cut or spend less on. A redistribution of funds, for people and the rest, is necessary.

Try to define for your own organization what is the least successful investment and swap it for new, more innovative ways of creating value and letting people know about it.

Gert-Jan Scheers

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Social media cause a fundamental change in Marketing

Yesterday i was in a meeting with representatives of interactive agencies  in The Netherlands. We were discussing the possibility of setting up a taskforce regarding Social Media within the IAB. Part of the discussion was about whether to use the term Social Media or Social Marketing. Some of us argued that it is more important to focus on the radically new way of thinking about marketing communication. Others wanted to talk about the different technologies that enable this paradigm shift.

Then people started to ask what the customers want. Hey, smart move!

Are they ready to embrace the new way of marketing? Engaging customers in a broader sense. Or is that too abstract (especially in the current market conditions). Do they prefer to hear about successful marketing cases with specific social media tools? How to get short term results!

I suppose the industry has to do a bit of both. But even if the industry does nothing, the market will teach the companies a lesson if they don’t innovate in this area of marketing and corporate communication. It’s like a sea where the tide is coming in. Your carefully built castle near the sea will be surrounded and eventually erased as so many sandcastles are at the end of the day. Working with the sea, becoming part of the sea is the only way for survival.

Gert-Jan Scheers

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The New Human

I gave a 5 minute update at one of the IPAN (Interactive Professionals Association Netherlands) evenings. The evening –led by Jacqueline Smit (Microsoft)– was about the continuous conflict between online and traditional agencies.

To explain the situation I introduced the New Human. The New Human is NOT hanging in front of a TV watching a continuous stream of mindless soaps. The Old Human has evolved.

You can clearly recognize four characteristics of the New Human in the following four leading web concepts.

Continue reading ‘The New Human’

Buying Platforms

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Been presenting on line concepts to several bigger clients like Nike Europe, Tommy Hilfiger and Kluwer. I talked about the impact of a free use of the internet and how to infiltrate existing platforms like Twitter.  The confusion is the same with all marketers: “How do we reach our potential target group with no money?” I reply with the same question: “How much money do you spend on traditonal media like tv and print?” The key is not to spend it on split seconds of attention but on full minutes or even hours of engagement.

I’ve found this interesting and extremely good explanation by Seth Godin. The new way of marketing is not to rent eyeballs but to get people on board of our platform. For this we need to 1) buy a platform, and to 2) make sure people join. Read his full story on his great blog.

Compared to the cost of renting eyeballs, buying a platform is cheap. Filling it with people eager to hear from you… that’s the expensive part. But if you don’t invest in the platform, you’ll be at a disadvantage, now and forever. The smart way to build a brand today is to invest in the elements of the platform… the product, the technology, the websites (plural) and the systems you need to make it easy for people to show up at your very own trade show. And then embrace these people and shoot for 90% conversion, not .5%.

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Learning new languages

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Picture this: You are a young Italian boy living in a small mountain village against the green slopes of Sicily. You’re 20. You go to school and watch TV. One day you open the shutters of your bedroom window and you think: “Mi piacerebbe davvero allontanarsi.” You know you want to be a part of the big world. It’s out there in the distance. You are aware of that. You can see that world on your TV screen every day. It’s fast, beautiful, trendy. It looks like so much more vivid than your own dusty town.

There’s only one problem. The language of the big world is English but apart from your high school teacher .. no one in your town speaks English. So – You decide to learn it all by yourself.

You’ll have to find ways to learn English. You watch more TV, you find courses online and you install ‘speech’ on your computer.

After 2 years of intense self study you’ll speak English like no other in your village or even in a range of a few kilometers.

You buy a ticket and you end up in Amsterdam … it’s your dream come true. But also a complete emotional crash. You do not speak the language you have tried to learn so hard. People have a hard time to understand you. They even ask you on what kind of computer you learned your sentences.

It’s exactly that what is happening in the Social Media and Marketing area. People that call themselves professionals really want to learn the language of the country that’s only comes to you through a screen. They follow, repeat, rehearse, study. But honestly: you’ll never get it unless you’re really a part of it.

To understand the language of the new world, you can not simply repeat other peoples successes. You have to feel to understand. You have to question the ‘why’ and not the ‘how’. You have to get the difference between ‘post’ and ‘send’.

Fellow professionals: question!


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