How Social Fits Into the Marketing Mix
Today's guest post features Geoff Livingston, author, public speaker and marketing strategist who has dedicated his career to helping mindful companies and nonprofits achieve social change. A former journalist, Livingston continues to write, and has authored three books. Most recently he co-authored Marketing in the Round, a book dedicated to helping companies build multichannel marketing campaigns in the post social media era.
The Old Spice Guy campaign might be the most well cited social media marketing case study in recent memory. What people forget is the campaign began with a heavy advertising buy starting with the Super Bowl. Social concluded the integrated multichannel campaign by making the character accessible to influencers on Twitter, Facebook and YouTube.
The Old Spice Guy was a multi-million dollar, multichannel marketing campaign developed by Wieden + Kennedy on behalf of Procter & Gamble.
Social media marketing suffers from a bad rap. No one understands how it impacts the bottom line or what even should be measured when it comes to online conversations. Two recent studies from the CMO Council and the CMO Survey showed that less than 10% of lead marketers feel that they are running well integrated digital campaigns.
That’s why the big challenge facing social media remains breaking down larger marketing silos and integrating into larger campaigns. That’s how success happens. ROI, measurement, outcomes and results are not independently achieved by tactic.
It’s not that social media needs to fulfill marketing’s role as a hard selling interaction. If anything, we have seen that social media doesn’t work when it’s used to hardsell or broadcast messages like other media are used. Rather, it’s an understanding of the larger stakeholder media experience.
The current marketing Facebook overfocus is a classic example of social media marketing gone wrong. People don’t go home and Facebook for three hours. They read, watch TV, go online to read and participate in other social media, comment on their mobile phones/tablets, listen to music, and on and on. Their nightly media experience extends well beyond anything Facebook offers.
That’s why social must be integrated into the larger marketing mix. It better represents the customer experience. It fulfills a role in the larger context.
How to Integrate Social Media
In an article on SmartBrief, we highlighted some ideas for marketers considering how to integrate social media into their campaigns. Here are some ways you can integrate social media into larger marketing campaigns:
- Create a channel for customer-service response on a large social network such as Twitter (pioneered by @ComcastCares, @NetSolCares and extending to many consumer brands).
- Recruit employees directly through social media (examples: Sodexo and KPMG UK).
- Interact and incentivize the most loyal customers in online communities (Starbucks and LEGO).
- Influencer and blogger relations (Cisco Systems and Nikon).
- Content marketing on a large social network such as YouTube (Dollar Shave Club and Blendtec).
- Initiatives for customer-generated content (Ford Motor’s Fiesta and Doritos).
- Create or participate in private communities on LinkedIn and other networks (BIO and GovLoop).
- Release relevant and tangential data through blogging, infographics, social networks and other methods (Booz Allen Hamilton and American Red Cross).
- Release relevant and entertaining content to garner attention from an unengaged audience (Chrysler and Old Spice).
Social media tactics like these can support larger campaign approaches (as described in the SmartBrief post). They should be selected in conjunction with other disciplines to achieve larger, measurable performance indicators for the overall marketing department. This kind of focus brings social out of the world of follower counts and “reach” and into the world of achieving real marketing objectives.
What do you think about integrating social into the larger marketing context?
Image Credit: Geoff Livingston