econSM, #2: Social Media Meets Marketing

Topic: Never has there been a medium in which marketing and advertising could be so closely measured (or manipulated). Some advertisers are entering the world of social media on tiptoes, hoping to retain control in an era of no control; others are intent on jumping into the deep end to see what happens; many are looking for the right mix in between the two extremes. Whatever happens, one thing is for sure: You’ll never sell anything the same way again.

Panelists: Simon Assaad (Heavy), John Battelle (Federated Media), Shawn Gold (MySpace), Tina Sharkey (BabyCenter), and Rishad Tobaccowala (Denuo). Moderator: Jimmy Guterman.

(Rough notes follow)

Battelle: We are still using panel-based management on the Internet. Doesn’t work for niche audiences. It’s difficult to fix. As we get into conversational marketing, what we are going to measure is a different metric. How do you measure the value of a conversation with a customer who only purchases something once a year. We need experimentation. We have 20 people who travel around and have conversations with advertisers. You can’t write an algorithm that makes sense to everyone. Until they do, we have to have conversations with marketers.

Gold: (To what marketers can do) Brands need to extend “value propositions” to social networks (huh?) My Space allows people to express themselves…which can be used by marketers.

Sharkey: Must see TV on Thursday is never going to happen again. You must get involved in “after market” — The “ego (or is she saying eco?) system” is also important. Marketers need to tap into the network of their users…(Guterman: Is there a way to create “live” events online, i.e., like we do on TV.) At AOL (where Sharkey is from) we learned from Live Aid. AOL became an enabler — the interface — to allow users to see what they wanted to see. Not just what the announcer wanted us to see.

Assaad: If marketing had no control, there would be no marketing. “Facilitating” is what I call it. How do you get involved in someone’s “self-marketing.” I don’t believe “primetime” is dead. Top primetime show is bigger than all of video on YouTube. Our clients need to sell millions of things, not five. What are the incentives for marketers to get involved. This is really, really hard work. It doesn’t scale.

Technorati Tags: ,