June 16, 2009

Marketing, what is it?

Dear Marketers, please don't take this as an insult, I appreciate everyone has a job to do. However, as an avid, and perhaps noisy user of various 'social media' tools - notably twitter, I really take exception to the view which seems prevalent by 'Marketers' and Agency types that those tools are in fact there to serve Marketing, Advertising and other Brand awareness strategies.

I think it is time for these people to focus on the first word in the descriptive term:
  • 'Social'
And here are a series of definitions for the term: http://bit.ly/zUOnM

So here is how I see it, Social Media tools have a place in all facets of industry, enterprise & other social environments. Including Advertising and Marketing. But just like other tools, they will have their benefits for a time and perhaps will change their angle over time. So when I read articles like this one I get quite irate as it seems to indicate that Twitter only exists to serve Marketing. It even starts off with the concept that everything has its time (it does), but then, just like far too many books, it veers off path and narrows in on Twitter as a Marketing tool which will die because its time has come.

Perhaps he is right, perhaps he is wrong, but I - and sure hundreds of thousands of others - use Facebook, twitter, tumblr, friendfeed etc. etc. for many other objectives than marketing. And gain so much out of these services from information which is not just specifically marketing and Advertising.

I also attended Social Media Club Sydney at the Supper Club last night, and it was a wonderfully social occasion, despite some niggles from one of them marketers ;) But the same line as the article I refer to above was spewed out one too many times during the interesting question and answer session and I had some opinions on that. Rather than rehashing those tweets, here are the key salient points I got
  • Social Media is a conversation
  • Social Media CAN include Branding and Marketing
  • Social Media is about what is happening now
  • Social Media as a Marketing Tool still requires real Business Modelling
  • Social Media is about building relationships - personal and business

And therefore I revisit a tweet I made many, many months ago (and therefore probably no longer still searchable), where I felt that Twitter is like going down the pub, but staying in your lounge room or your phone or wherever!

But each to their own, just don't hard sell me online!

Oh and @leighsales should definitely do the hard questioning at the next Social Media Gathering. Are you listening Tip?

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