Sixty years ago as television was emerging on the scene, TV ads resembled radio ads. They consisted primarily of a pitchman standing in front of a camera, describing a product, much the way he would on radio. The only difference was that you could see him holding the product.
As TV matured, so did the advertising. As marketers learned the power of the visual medium they created ads to engage emotions, some were funny, others were sweet or sentimental and some serious and thought provoking. While the average viewer is more jaded today, we can still be moved to laughter, tears or action with the right ad. (In most cases, we will, however, be watching it on Youtube).
Web design has gone through the same process, from an age of brochure sites, we moved to flash and animated graphics to excite the visitor, and finally to simple, mobile friendly sites, which go where our customers are, with interactive features to create marketing conversations with visitors.
And now, we see social media going through the same phases. From causal conversations to broadcast of sales messages, savvy marketers are learning to find that balance between conversation, engagement and a bit of sales thrown in. As the medium matures, more and more small business owners are taking it more seriously as part of their marketing mix.
Is that wishful thinking or are there really changes afoot? We want to know, so once again we are conducting a small business social media survey and comparing the results to past years. We hope to have a lot more results, but many of the comments we have seen so far clearly reflect this maturing attitude.
From the Survey:
I used to stress about blogging on a schedule and worry that comments counts were not very high. I have now relaxed and blog when I have a topic of interest and integrate my posts in live in person workshops and trainings. Clients love links to topics of interest and I can see they have visited – even if they don't leave a comment.
Spending more time on fewer mediums. Althought I am always looking for the next new platform, when it comes, we will give up one of the old ones.
I have been working to create a simple and focused strategy that is more interactive with potential clients.
What about you? Have you changed your approach to this maturing medium? Are you seeing results? We would love to add your experiences to our social media survey. it will take just a few minutes ( It is only 20 questions). Then look for more results here later this spring.