09 Jan An Organish Approach to Social Media
Facebook is a media channel, so is Twitter, Pinterest, Instagram etc. It shouldn’t be a surprise that the owners of those channels expect to be paid for commercial messaging. After all, ESPN expects payment for advertising on its broadcast, digital and mobile networks; commercial social networks are no different.
What is different is the content on these channels and the way media is consumed. ESPN aggregates sporting events, news and opinion while Twitter does the same thing, just from everyday users (ESPN is rapidly integrating its audience’ content into its offerings as well). The difference in marketing on ESPN vs. Social Channels becomes one of attention. On social channels, users are in lean forward mode and actively engaging with the content they are interested in, it’s a particularly bad time to interrupt them with messaging that is unrelated to them or their interests. ESPN’s audience is in a lean back mode and consuming content as entertainment, the use case is different as is the capacity for receiving messaging.
2014 witnessed a conversion on Facebook from organic reach to paid media. This isn’t unexpected, but it created havoc for marketers who built large “audiences” on the channel. As most discovered, instead of an audience, they actually had a fan count, which in many cases had been artificially created and was meaningless. To make matters worse, Facebook’s algorithm penalizes content that does not receive engagement; the large fan counts have a negative impact on subsequent engagement as it creates a doom loop of decreasing engagement. The only way to maintain engagement numbers is to pay.
In 2015, many other platforms will adopt this approach to monetize their business models. Many marketers will respond with paid social advertising programming to drive reach, however, paid social performs pouty in terms of engagement and isn’t social media any more than ESPN advertising is sports programming. The original value of social media was the organic nature and the fact that the trust level of the format is much greater than most advertising.
The evolution of the social media environment now requires a new approach to organic engagement at scale. A blend of paid, organic and engaged media can produce outsized results. This Organish™ approach captures the true value of social media while achieving the reach, frequency and conversion of traditional marketing. Organish media also creates lasting impacts to brand conversation share of voice and organic digital search results spanning platforms from Google to Instagram. As social overtakes search for overall website traffic referral, quality social content will be critical for marketers.
At the heart of a successful Organish approach is the community manager. Using a blend of audience metrics, content creativity and intuition, highly effective community managers regularly outperform premium, paid and especially automated social media (which is an oxymoron). Community managers build audience experience over time and through integration into the communities they serve. Content is created based on relevant audience interests, current events and actual engagement with user created media. By monitoring overall interaction levels, Community Managers boost content showing interest to reach a broader audience.
OrganishSM is a service mark of Ignite Social Media