This spring has been an amazingly busy time for me. I can’t believe it’s been 2 months since I last blogged . Blogging is something I really enjoy but when work gets busy it’s usually the first casualty. I’m getting the Emerging Media team up and running which means creating process, hiring people, creating a business plan and socializing what we do. The Emerging Media team is a horizontal on the global media team which give us the amazing opportunity to work across all global campaigns. I’ve been out meeting with new media companies and getting a better understanding of how and where our team can plug into these new media opportunities.
This spring has also been an interesting time for social media marketers. Platforms and offerings are changing at lightening speed. Twitter announced their first advertising platform called Sponsored Tweets, then quickly rolled out Trending Topics. Facebook announced their Open Graph concept. Ning announced a restructuring of their business focusing on niche paid communities as opposed to being a free community service for all. AOL and Bebo, need I say more. But as much as things seem to change one reassuring thought I have is that the fundamentals haven’t.
Mark Pincus from Zynga said at F8 this spring that when people are given the chose to share with their personal network vs the larger world they are much more likely to share with their own network. People are still most influenced by the people they know. We are all still looking for connections to one other whether it’s virtual or live. Facebook reported the most heavily trafficked day of the year is New Years Day and has been for 4 years, followed second by Halloween. People want to share with family and friends their pictures, well wishes and well… life. Enter Narrowcasting.
Narrowcasting is people sharing with people they know what is happening in their lies, as opposed to broadcasting where people share with everyone including lots of people they don’t know. Twitter is broadcasting, Facebook is narrowcasting. This isn’t any different than we as a society have done for centuries. Communities, towns, parishes, schools, families have been coming together throughout history to share celebrations, tragedies and making of history. Hundreds of thousands of people filled the streets and parks of downtown Chicago the night President Obama won the 2008 election because experiencing a moment in history is best done together. We at our core want to connect with each other – feel like we are part of something bigger than our concentric circle. But the best sharing is done with those we know. Enter the ‘Groupon’ ‘Social Vibe’ phenomenon.
Groupon and Social Vibe are about narrowcasting. Get the people you know to share in the deals you like and you’ll be rewarded. I love this concept (got a great deal on a facial for me and by BFF). Expect to see this strategy more and more from bigger brand campaigns. I recently saw an execution like this with a local cable company. If a person signed up for the cable service and got 3 friends to do the same they all got a month for free. I want a free month and I definitely want to share that free month with my friends. This behavior is second nature to Millennial’s but my mommy friends are on board with it too. Think about how you can incentivize your core customers by rewarding them and their friends and family and make sure you enable the ability to one click narrowcast it.