Advertising, PR, and marketing agencies are rapidly waking up to the fact that they can no longer be competitive without including social and emerging media in the work they propose to clients.
But in many, if not most, agencies, social media is suffering from Slide 29 Syndrome.
That’s when an account exec calls the digital gurus and says something like this:
“For the past few weeks, we’ve been working on an RFP that we need to send to the client tomorrow. Please add some social media recommendations to the deck and get it us by COB today.”
They say that because they think social media is Twitter and Facebook and that you pretty much just need to throw up a page so you can broadcast your press releases and announcements.
Or, they say:
“We don’t have much money left in the budget and we need to add some digital to the deck. Send us some ideas we can add to what we’ve got.”
They say that because they need to bill a certain number of hours this week and they don’t want social media to use up too many of them.
And then the digital ideas get added on to the deck – usually somewhere around Slide 29.
Why social media gets buried at Slide 29
Most CMOs, account managers, and project managers in agencies or on the client side still don’t have real world experience using social media and therefore don’t understand that:
- Social media is a way of thinking, not just a set of tools.
- They don’t walk the walk themselves.
- Emerging media needs to be built in to the architecture of a plan, starting from the first brainstorm – not appended to a finished proposal.
- Social media is a conversational medium, not a broadcast platform.
- Companies that don’t listen to customers will often be bitten on the ass by them.
- Emerging media is substantially more measurable than traditional media, but the metrics are different.
- Social media is not a gimmick, or a substitute for a marketing strategy.
Mashable: How to use social media in your PR pitch plan.
Dave Fleet: Does social media make PR agencies obsolete?
Cartoon: Hugh Macleod, gapingvoid
Love it, did a trackback post and tweeted you!
Needed to read just this today! Thanks!
Oh so true! I work with musicians who are generally a very clued-up bunch when it comes to social media but it takes a lot time, dedication and a genuine desire to connect with fans to do it properly. There is nothing so transparent as someone/anyone who does it halfheartedly or worse, does it in a corporate way. Derek Sivers just posted a great entry to his blog about how important it is to remember that there are REAL PEOPLE at the end of every computer. The link is here: http://sivers.org/real
Had a similar experience yesterday, in fact. Was talking to a friend, who works at another company, about her organization’s lack of social marketing. I tried explaining the benefits of using it, plus how it can be embedded for cross promotion via other platforms such as email, etc. Her response was that the director of marketing didn’t have the resources or staff to manage it. So, social media got thrown to the curb, yet that company invests oodles of hours, money and resources to direct mail that yields a marginal ROI. Why not reallocate the budget to social? Why bury social under other failing initiatives? Spend an hour or two per day on Facebook, rather than coming up with the next direct-mail piece.
Ha ha ha – love the Slide 29 analogy. Did you see our 200,000th presentation, which we put up day before yesterday – right along your alley: http://www.slideshare.net/XeeSM/social-media-presentation-200000