Wednesday, 30 September 2009

Original Social Media

image courtesy of Stig Nygaard

Rather predictably, hysterical excitement about the potential of Social Media for marketing is giving way to grave warnings about its shortcomings. In amongst all this, ten people, who really do know what they're talking about, have cooperated to suggest ten principles for Social Media. You can find them here.

For those of us working in what can be called the original Social Media (i.e. live events) many of these points are second nature. I'm absolutely not trying to say that as event experts we are somehow qualified to create digital Social Media strategies. What I am saying is that event thinking and delivery has an important role to play in building and sustaining brand's Social Networks.

Here are four points plucked from the ten principles for Social Media:

1) Marketing becomes something you do with rather than to people.
2) Social Media earns doesn't buy attention.
3) Relationships require building before they can be leveraged. You can't ask someone you just met to help you move, or to borrow money. You need to build the relationship first.
4) It's an environment in which the more human elements matter - having a point of view, being true to yourself and what you say, being open, honest, transparent.

All of these could have come from a set of principles about creating effective live experiences.

Brands such as Diesel with their U:Music tour and Quark for whom we created 8x8 are recognising the power of a Social Media strategy which spans both live and digital. Such an approach creates more dimensions, allows greater depth and shows a genuine commitment to your community.