It’s been a good ride. Mass marketing got us where we are today but staying with the status quo never leads to anything worthwhile.
We’ve tried to hypnotize everyone into buying our product. It used to be if you bought enough ads you could win. This model implies you’re the king. Average ideas and plenty of ads was the winning formula.
I received these two pieces of direct mail today.
Since I haven’t done business with either of these stores, it’s clear they’re mass marketing. I would love to see the result of a budget spent on these campaigns reallocated to Social Media marketing.
We must stop our addiction to mass marketing; staying with the status quo is too darned expensive. It costs you two ways: the obvious (throwing money at a by-gone era) and the not-so-obvious (your online reputation).
Mass culture is not dead. We still come together on things like the weather and the Olympics. Mass media, however, has declined in importance.
The mass market is now in the hands of the masses themselves.
The most effective messages no longer come from mass media outlets. They come from consumers who share their opinions by either interacting with the brand, writing online reviews or simply sharing a brand’s message on their Facebook News Feed.
Stop trying to reach thousands. Instead, reach ONE while thousands watch.
Compelling messages do still come from the brand themselves but they’re not one-way broadcasted messages like direct mail. Instead, the message is in the form of a blog post that solves a problem or informs about a cool new option. It’s a tweet replying to a customer who’s got a service issue. It’s the store’s Facebook updates that engage, entice, enlighten and enthusiastically convey what’s awesome about the subjects their audience enjoys.
Make no mistake – we still have to craft creative messages that attract our customer. But it’s no longer a one-way communication. Today we connect directly with each consumer and they respond back. In some cases, another consumer responds as well. Their network witnesses the interaction and gives a thumbs-up or thumbs-down.
We’ve gone from pushing dubious facts to sharing ideas.
The masses are leading and connecting people with ideas. Seth Godin calls them Tribes. They aren’t new, it’s just that the Internet was supposed to homogenize everyone and instead anyone can now connect with their tribe and go somewhere, any which way they please.
My tribe is effective, successful Social Media for auto dealers. I’m part of a movement. It’s our passion that drives us, the true believers. I did not invent the idea. I am participating and standing up saying I’ve seen the status quo and I don’t like it. My tribe looks at the rules and says let’s push through to something better.
Tell a story, connect a tribe, lead a movement, make change. Who are you upsetting? Who are you connecting? Who are you leading?
Create a movement. Start. The customer is aching for it.
Empower your customers to be your voice. Sharing the excitement that is your brand is much more effective than blasting them with noisy interruptions.