Wednesday, March 30, 2016

Political Social Media Provides Marketing Lessons

A recent Economist article speaks to the use of social media in the political arena, where even Donald Trump has mustered up more than seven million followers on Twitter.  What is pivotal on Twitter and other social media vehicles, though, is that messages have a much broader audience based upon sharing and forwards.

Much like a product adoption curve, social media movements are built upon the way that voices can quickly organize.  Messages like #BlackLivesMatter have gained momentum from social media.  And while that is certainly a deserving cause, more often than not, the topic itself is less relevant that the personality of the participants.  Getting your message (or marketing/product message) into the right hands can be pivotal, and the article claims that targeting extroverts makes all the difference.  These types of individuals respond well to social messages and want to both join and be seen as a joiner.

In the future, the article claims that it will be possible to predict and even trigger social media ‘surges’ – but this may be a capability only reached by the likes of Facebook and Google.  The summary of the article is that social media movements help societies to be more democratic but also foreshadow the power play with those who will eventually control the tools to track them.

As digital marketers, we should seek to understand the value in movements and remain resilient, even when all campaigns don’t take off.  But we should definitely maintain our efforts where we’re able to disseminate product or service messages that may have a more social or community message and target key influencers.  And we should certainly prepare ourselves for the future, when we’ll begin to pay for secret algorithms to deliver our own surges.

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