Marketing With Social Media May Disappoint: The Media is NOT the Message!

    Written by Anthony L. Butler

    The current hype in the media is all about the power of Social Media and how it will “revolutionize” the marketing world. Ashton Kutcher’s recent race with CNN to one million followers on Twitter got special attention because it had never been done before.

    The kind of following a celebrity or media outlet can build is far larger than most businesses. So Ashton gains a large following, now what? What value can he bring to his target office in 140 characters or less that will help them care enough to do something—to take real action? He might keep them entertained for a few months, but will he be able to leverage his audience to accomplish anything in the real world? We will soon see.


    Companies who market in order to generate real leads of qualified buyers who are willing and able to trade their hard earned dollars for something you are selling need much more than just a gimmick.



    Facebook, Twitter, Youtube, email marketing, blogs, podcasts, internet radio, and many other internet tools do not make sales. It is the relevant messages that evoke emotions that make the actual sale. Words that motivate others to take action are what change a market, start a movement or bring a tribe of like minded individuals together.



    I repeat the MEDIUM through which you deliver your marketing message does not drive sales. The message itself is what does the driving. Seth Godin, the author of Permission Marketing, Purple Cow and several other thought leading books has it exactly right. Companies who are able to tell a relevant story to a target market that cares are the ones who will get ahead in the new marketing environment.



    The biggest change in the new millennium of marketing is the slow death of brand marketing. It is highly subjective and quickly becoming irrelevant. Americans are under a non-stop barrage of marketing messages nearly every minute of every day. If you don’t believe me, try to count the number of advertisements you see on the way to work tomorrow morning. If you live in a rural area, it will most likely number in the hundreds. If you live in an urban area such as New York or Chicago it may number in the thousands.



    Mass marketing with a generic message is nearly meaningless. During a thunderstorm you are unable to hear individual rain drops. The sound of individual drops are lost in the crowd. They are tuned out.



    Social media allows potential clients to choose the messages they feel are relevant to them at that very moment. They need to give you permission to market to them. They must give you the go ahead to tell your story and if your story doesn’t touch a deep emotion a story that does is just a click away.



    The moral of the story of Marketing 2.0 is Social Media, and like any other marketing channel is only as good as the craftsman wielding the saw. Facebook and Twitter improperly applied will deliver nothing more than a black hole of time, money, and an incredible load of frustration.