In his post, he urged readers to write to “show people how to use social media to drive meaningful conversations instead of being yet another marketing tool, we have to run out and educate at a break-neck pace, so we can bring more and more thought leaders into alignment with these big and not-so-big organizations who could use our help.”
Well, Chris, here goes nuthin’.
No. 17: After the Event – Carrying the Conversation Forward
Typically, advertising creatives spend most of their time thinking about THE CAMPAIGN.
They think about THE BIG IDEA that’s going to communicate the most unique aspect of a product to the masses. They then think about how to translate THE BIG IDEA into a television commercial, a radio spot, an outdoor ad, a print ad and stuff like that. They also think about THE PRODUCT LAUNCH and how they’re going to hype it to the press.
That’s a hell of a lot of stuff to think about, isn’t it? But once THE CAMPAIGN is over, their job is done.
As a web worker, I need to think a little bit more.
Because, when you put something on the Web, it is generally meant to stay there, so that people can look at it, talk about it, share it, download it and carry it around in their Mimobot and do whatever else they want to do with it, legally-speaking, of course.
So, I need to think about how people are going to engage THE BIG IDEA.
But before that, I need to think about making it accessible to them. That means crafting a website, a banner ad or e-mail newsletter that works on any computer, through any Internet connection speed.
I also need to think about making THE BIG IDEA usable so that it continues to engage people well after the media have stopped talking about it and move on to the next Paris Hilton arrest or Halo 3 screenshot.
It’s not uncommon that I ask my account managers to delay taking the site down; as a web worker, my job is to make sure it stays around as long as possible, to extend THE BIG IDEA beyond traditional timelines and constraints.
My job is to make the brand converse with you, not yell at you while you’re trying to read your e-mail or projectile-vomit on your MySpace profile just to get 3 seconds of your attention.
That’s why I try to make most of the stuff I work on last beyond contests and promotional periods; I’ll try to encourage you to share your comments about THE PRODUCT, to take content along with you and put it on your blogs or social networks. I’ll try to make you want to post links in forums and MSN. Or re-post a video that my counterparts in mainstream did on YouTube.
And I’ll try to make it worth your while, because I know that if it isn’t and if I’m not adding value to your interaction with the brand, then I’m not doing my job.
On top of that, I need to think about marketing my work effectively, too.
We’re on THE WEB, remember?
I need to make sure my clients know exactly how many people have been to their microsite, how many downloads they made, who’s linking to the site and where they’re from.
After THE CAMPAIGN is over, I sit down and look at how far we’ve managed to go with our conversations with our visitors. How far you, the visitor, has been involved with the brand; what you’ve Twittered about it, who agrees with you, who doesn’t and why.
Always, we want to know ‘Why’ because it helps us figure out ‘How’ when the next campaign comes knocking on our door.
And that’s how I help to carry the conversation forward.