Social Brands: From Ads To Added Value

Simon Kemp

Social Brands Part 3
We concluded Part 2 of our Social Brands series with the assertion that the marketers who understand how to add value to people’s lives are best placed to build enduring relationships with communities.

As with many aspects of marketing, this may seem like a statement of the obvious, but many marketers still struggle to turn this common sense into dollars and cents.

Interruption vs Interaction
Too much of today’s marketing relies on elaborate spectacle to divert people’s attention away from something else they were doing.

Indeed, brands have come to rely on interrupting people with increasingly shiny distractions, placing all the emphasis on short-term gains instead of building longer-term mutual value.

The result is ‘one-night-stand marketing’ – relationships based on pick-up lines and instant gratification at the expense of more meaningful, enduring relationships.

However, this approach is unsustainable; shouting for attention rarely wins over people’s hearts.

From One-Night Stands To Getting Engaged
The secret to better marketing is not about finding more efficient ways to interrupt people.

Rather, it’s about finding new ways to engage people as effectively as possible.

The secret to this engagement lies in adding value at every possible opportunity – offering people things that make their lives better, adding to their experiences instead of interrupting them.

In the future, marketing that doesn’t add value will simply be ignored.

From Ads To Added Value
This shift from interruption to added-value interaction will impact media too.

Publishers will need to evolve from an ad-funded model that is inherently value-detractive, and rethink their business model around an approach that delivers a more integral value proposition.

But it’s the shift to an audience-centric model – rather than a brand-oriented, media-centric model – that will have the greatest impact on marketing.

From Ego Media To Social Marketing
If marketers are to succeed tomorrow, they need to put their audiences first.

Critically, brands need to engage people around passions, not products.

In other words, marketing needs to be about them, not you.

Want to join the conversation? We’d love to hear your thoughts and reactions, so why not share them in the comments. The next post in the Social Brands series explores the importance of mobile in the marketing of tomorrow.