If you haven’t already been sold on the idea that social media will be a major key to growing your business now and even more so in the coming years, watch this 3-minute video. (Even if you are convinced, watch it anyway; it’s well-produced and thought provoking).
While the video wedges in a lot of interesting facts, I think one of the most important takeaways revolve around facts like this: “90% of people now skip ads on their Tivo/DVR” and “Only 18% of TV ad campaigns have a positive ROI.”
You can see this trend in a lot more than television. Think of any other traditional media:
- Radio — iPods, downloaded MP3’s, and steadily satellite radio are all commercial free.
- Newspaper — Not only are people moving to online versions of major papers or even just blogs, we read an article here and there, instead of sitting down to digest an entire paper (and some of its ads). Also, with the advent of the RSS reader, news is even further filtered to exactly what we want and nothing else.
- Traditional Websites — Web browsers have become increasingly good at blocking ads. When a site does force you to watch an ad, they’re easier to ignore.
Which brings me to my next point: people are getting really good at ignoring ads. Before the time of the web, ads were a part of a world of limited content. We didn’t have access to any fact at any time in any place. We took what was given to us whether we liked it or not. We could read one of a few local news papers, listen to AM or FM, and driving down the highway, even billboards were another source of new information. New content was much more rare, so each new piece intrigued us a bit more than it does today.
Now, we can find just about any information we could ever want with a click or a search. Advertisements become less novel in a world full of more information than you could ever hope to consume in a thousand lifetimes.
So, here’s the point. If people are increasingly ignoring advertising everywhere else and can tell when they’re being “sold to”, you should know what’s going to happen if you use social media as a bull horn to spout your marketing and nothing else.
Social media is about getting people to trust you. Then, instead of ignoring what you have to say, they’ll listen. They’ll also be much more likely to trust that your product is worthy of their hard earned time and money.
Now, how to earn that trust? More on that coming soon…