Social Media Technology Tears Down Traditional Marketing Temple Walls

August 5, 2011
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Integrating social media technology to improve user engagement and acquisition has become a way of life for website owners today. Even Fortune 1000 companies know that they must integrate social media into their websites too. While marketing temples have been built in the past, which some marketers believed the walls to be unassailable – social media is tearing down these temple walls, and this technology is demolishing these walls as fast as the speed of light.

Demographic defining target markets for the last fifty years were simply being fished or bombarded. They reflected the marketplace poorly. Social network integration is providing demographics on emerging interests which have never been seen before. The demographics are far more realistic; established by life cycle forecasting based on well-known behavioral trends. This type of information makes a good deal more sense to modern marketers when targeting and pre-qualifying potential customers.

Mass marketing advertising was the order of the day when in the 1950′s and 60′s, the goal of advertising on TV was to aggregate as many viewers as possible. This approach came about by the increase in consumer goods which were mass produced for a mass audience. The message went out to consumers as groups, that all advertising messages were as relevant to them as everyone else. Baby boomers are a prime example, when the same marketing messages went out to 78 million people all lumped together as one. It was a case of generational classification, all of whom supposedly wanted to receive the same message.

This tradition is one marketing temple wall that is as broken down as the Berlin wall. The year that a person was born in, no longer dictates the products or information they wish to receive. Fragmentation in advertising is the order of the day and there are – fortunately for humanity – less unifying characteristics in new generations. The pace of change is dynamic and people are self-selecting themselves into different non-generational, small and even temporal groups. Social networking is believed to be the catalyst for these phenomenal changes.

There is no top-down way to successfully market to massive groups of supposedly like-minded people today. Innovative marketers have responded well to the changes, while others, clinging to the old mind-set, are still trying to market 50,000 units to 14 million apparently ‘targeted’ customers.

Amazon.com is an expert in the use of new technology, supported by social media and dubbed “psychographic profiling”. This profiling looks at the consumer based on a mental-model. It examines them from the perspective of a customer life cycle. Amazon algorithms are programmed to predict what people are interested in and when, and from this prediction, innovations such as recommended products have come about. Psychographics are being used as powerful business tools to suggest, “users like you have already purchased these products”.

Psychographics are derived from social media profile data – of which, as we know, there are multiple sources. The information relating to customer life cycle is leveraged to contact a target market who is ready and waiting to buy, and in most instances, with whom a friendly relationship has already been established.

Social media data generated from personal profiles is the cornerstone of this marvelous marketing technology. The basis of the information gleaned is from users who grant permission; so, the level of nuance of psychographic insight, compared to traditional demographic collection is so state-of-the-art that a comparison is barely possible. It is this, plus other similar technology that is tearing down traditional marketing temple walls, and the possibilities are quite frankly, out-of-this-world.

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