Is it true? “There Is No More Social Media — Just Advertising” | DigitalNext – AdAge

In this article from Ad Age, the author makes some important points about our use of social media for marketing. Social media marketing now simulates digital versions of media planning for print and broadcast. This is reflected in the Zones of Social Media Marketing – social publishing and social entertainment. 

Proulx is absolutely right, with the exception of one thing.

What is that thing? Proulx doesn’t distinguish between paid, earned, and owned media. Advertising is defined as paid media. We can advertising in social media channels. But we can also earn media in social media. Earning media impressions takes human labor and creativity but we cannot buy it with media dollars.

You might be thinking this is semantics but it’s important that we use the right language to relay our meaning. Proulx means to say that SMM is just MarCom – or promotions. SMM IS a part of the media planning puzzle, but, for now, it remains a puzzle piece that requires more art than science in its effective use.

tags: smm v3 intro chp1 chp5 chp2 promoted paid advertising ecuadvertising ECUSocialMedia adage 2015

  • Social media marketing is now advertising. It’s largely a media planning and buying exercise — emphasizing viewed impressions. Brands must pay if they really want their message to be seen. It’s the opposite of connecting or listening — it’s once again broadcasting.

  • Twitter’s Dick Costolo recently said that ads will "make up about one in 20 tweets." It’s also no secret that Facebook’s organic reach is on life support, at best. And when Snapchat launched Discover, it was quick to point out that "This is not social media."

  • Media is more automated, targeted, instant, shareable and optimized than ever before. But is there anything really social about it? Not below its superficial layer.

  • Once you come to terms with this reality, there are a number of things that you can do as marketers to make the most of this era of #NotReally social media marketing.

  • Remember when social media used to be called unpaid media? Those days are over. Marketing on social networks today requires a shift in mindset — one that considers social networks, like Facebook and Twitter, as any other ad-supported media properties. They have targetable mass audiences that you can reach if you’re willing to allocate a chunk of your media budget.

  • Unlike other media properties, social platforms have a built-in instant feedback loop in the form of likes, comments, favorites, retweets, etc. Start by allocating a small amount of money equally across promoted posts. Then use the platforms’ inherent social signals to help determine on which content to increase your bets. Continue to "double-down" on top performers by increasing paid media dollars. Think of it as crowd-sourced media planning. The most popular posts are a sure bet to amplify to a more mass audience.

  • Stay true to your brand and only post when you have something relevant, useful, and/or valuable to share.

  • While engagement metrics are helpful in surfacing popular content, your paid media success should be measured against specific marketing goals (Hint: "Increase likes and followers" is not a business objective.) To really measure business impact requires a more thorough analytics approach beyond what social platforms natively offer, including attribution modeling and experimental design.

  • Consumers’ media habits have become a mashup of devices, platforms and content. Use this as an advantage to plan and execute programs that work across channels. Your promoted posts should complement, connect and amplify as part of your larger marketing strategy. And the content you create? It should be customized to the unique strengths and nuances of each social platform in your mix.

  • All media today is essentially social media and the deep dark secret is that it’s not very social after all. Social networks are now mass-media properties.

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