I was having a conversation with a colleague here at Metia
recently, where he brought up a point that's hard to argue: Social
Media is more than just Facebook and Twitter. While it may
seem obvious, it's worth thinking about.
Social Media, by its very definition, is about the
Medium--and the medium is really only the vehicle that allows, or
merely amplifies a social behavior. Social without Media
still occurs, in the form of face-to-face word of mouth.
Media without Social is simply a broadcast: one-way communication
from a brand to its customer.
By limiting the discussion of social media to Facebook and Twitter, we leave out every
other social-sharing tool out there, including the other two
"biggies:" YouTube and
LinkedIn. You'll also leave out Google+,
Digg, StumbleUpon, Tumblr, Evite, Pandora, Spotify, Ask, and all kinds of
blogs, forums, community sites, and even email and IM.
Maybe it's outside of the scope of "media," but it's also
important to remember that social sharing is still done the old
fashioned way: word of mouth. Entrepreneur Magazine recently
reported on a
study done by Keller-Fay, that found that 91 percent of
respondents' information about brands came as a result of
face-to-face conversations or over the phone. Just seven percent of
word-of-mouth conversations about brands occurs online.
Marketers focusing only on Facebook and Twitter should re-think
their definition of word of mouth marketing. I like the
definition by the
Word of Mouth Marketing Association:
"WOMM - Any business action that
earns a customer recommendation."
You're doing word of mouth marketing
whenever you do the following:
- Deliver better products and services
- Provide a great customer experience
- Follow through on excellent customer service
- Use advertising to create awareness and appreciation
- Mobilize brand advocates
- Engage with customers through social media
How is your marketing earning a customer recommendation?