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Social media talk must be fresh and relevant for impact

Some of the conversations initiated by brands on social media are mind-numbing. FILE PHOTO | NMG
Some of the conversations initiated by brands on social media are mind-numbing. FILE PHOTO | NMG 

If it is true that the caveman had the same brain that we have today, then he was certainly over qualified for every career option available to him. Our brain has sent people to the moon, eradicated smallpox and invented sliced bread, yet Mr. Caveman only used it to run away from his predators long enough to eat and reproduce.

I suspect that many wives think that this is still relevant and that their husbands are only interested in eating and reproducing. In the beginning, however, she admired him for his wit and conversation and couldn’t wait for the next rendezvous to catch up on unfolding events, spending time listening to him and staring into his eyes.

If it is to have any impact, social media conversation must mimic real life, not the boring and mundane, but more of the puppy-love exciting type of intercourse, verbal that is.

Some of the conversations initiated by brands are mind-numbing akin to being locked up in a room with a Neanderthal who insists on talking about his two favourite activities.

When it comes to dating I must admit that my skills are rusty but I still know that the conversation you have on the first date cannot be repeated endlessly, yet that is what many brands do on their social media pages. Doesn’t it have to progress in some way to remain interesting and captivating?

Local brands tend to talk incessantly about themselves like that bore that traps you at a party who thinks that he’s God’s gift to mankind, and takes it as his mission to tell everyone who cares to listen about his endowments.

Yet like the starry eyed potential partner sitting across from you at the table on the first date, what your audience wants is to be recognised for her individuality and to talk about things that interest her.

If you don’t have an insight into what floats her boat then your evening will go the way of the Titanic, and as she is multifaceted, variety is a must because it is the sauce that keeps interaction sizzling.

While Joe Tripodi was the CMO at Coca-Cola, he said that a major transformation was happening for brands as they moved from pure advertising into creating and managing content, and how customers were an important ingredient in content creation.

Thereafter we’ve seen the organization make deliberate steps to generate the type of content that their customers engage with most — video formats in general and music content specifically. It’s not rocket science because when you glance at the most watched content on YouTube you find a long list of music videos.

In sales training they told us that you can’t go fishing with ice cream at the end of your hook because you happen to like ice cream. The fish will reject it because the only thing they want is fresh worms!

If you want to capture your audience hook, line and sinker, then you need to start developing content that is fresh and relevant because it is real people, and not socio-economic statistics, that you are talking to. David Ogilvy put it plainly when he said “the consumer is not a moron, she is your wife!”

Otin is a digital marketing expert and CEO of The Collective - an interactive ad agency. He is also the President of PAMRO and the Chairman of the Advertising Standards Board of Kenya.

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