How are businesses marketing their products/services? Are they still broadcasting at their audience? David Cushman, wrote an interesting article about the change from traditional method of advertising to being able to engage and listen to the business’s audience in the social media world. As mentioned in a previous post, the internet has evolved, where many companies are utilizing and implementing web 2.0 tools. As mentioned in a previous post, the web is increasingly being fragmented, where users are able to select the what, where, when, who, why and how of experiencing the internet. Since the user is in full control of his/her experience, how does a marketer reach his/her target audience?
Mr. Cushman, has stressed users control the conversation made to/from them, and 70% of their purchase decisions were made through recommendations. Websites such as Amazon.com display online reviews from various users as well as from experts. Other than setting up online forums, questions/comments page, how else can businesses listen to consumers?
This post has a wonderful example of how Twitter is used to listen to what users are saying about the business’s brand. Going to search website that enables anyone to listen on any conversation about any topic. Some companies such as Comcast, Zappos.com, and Dell regularly monitor Twitter to handle any customer-related issues.
Mr. Cushman explains that widgets, which are tools that allows marketers to advertise their product/service, yet, allows consumers to share, discuss and collaborate using these tools amongst themselves. Effective widgets need to have the following traits: 1) Marketers need to relinquish control of the marketing message; 2) These toolkits need to be user-friendly; 3) Allow users to be creative.
Since this is user-generated content, users are more apt to share and market this content among their friends. As discussed earlier, content is now owned by the user, he/she is able to generate conversation as a result of this.
The traditional broadcast model is still valuable, but, this emergence of the social media cannot be ignored. Companies need to adapt to be effective in embracing this form of advertising.