I’m starting to repeat myself. We’ve been having very similar conversations about social media with virtually all of our clients over the last eight months or so, the main point being: “You need to start thinking like a media company. Your objective in this fragmented universe should be to build channel.”
That sounds great, but what does it mean?
1. Stop building temporary microsites and spending millions in media dollars to send people there, only to shut it all down (or leave it to wither) when the campaign ends. Attention is an expensive gift – think about how you can recycle it.
2. Who cares if companies like Honda have 2 million app users on Facebook? You should – they can engage with and activate 2 million qualified brand enthusiasts in the future, at virtually no cost.
3. Think like a broadcaster – if someone has spent time and money making channel 14 highly rated, are they going to launch a new channel to air their new show? No – they’re going to piggyback on the money they’ve spent and the eyeballs they’ve attracted. Knowing this, why are you reinventing the wheel every time you have something new to share or talk about?
4. Your plan should be to build permanent real estate (your own and on the social networks of choice for the people you are trying to reach) that can be strategically leveraged to let you connect with the people you want to talk to most and who want to talk to you.
Old habits die hard – we’re all still getting used to the scary fact that social media means millions of consumers are publishers – they no longer require a TV station or newspaper to get their point across to a vast audience. But business needs to take a breath and realize these new rules apply to them as well. This of course requires a re-thinking of where marketing and media dollars go; something that’s a lot more than scary for a whole industry.
“You need to start thinking like a media company. You need to build channel.”