The Rhumb Line Headline Animator

Monday, February 25, 2013

Social Media, the Rodney Dangerfield of Marketing


“My psychiatrist told me social media was crazy. I said I want a second opinion. He said okay, it’s ugly too.”

1 or 2% engagement is considered the target goal for most social media efforts. Why is that? After all, at that rate of engagement, you might as well be talking to yourself. The answer is because that’s what the vast majority of businesses get, and so we live with it. But it is not good.

And we're not talking just the little guys. We're talking brands like The Ford Motor Company, Ralph Lauren, The NY Yankees... even Lady Gaga and Justin Bieber.

Nearly every Facebook page we look at reminds us of another classic Dangerfield line:

“A girl phoned me the other day and said... 'Come on over, there's nobody home.' I went over. Nobody was home.

Only in social media can you walk into a meeting at a Fortune 500 company, with a room full of people including senior level decision makers, CMO/EVP types, and have a twenty something, fresh out of college, raise their hand in response to the question “Who manages your social media?” Really? What other marketing platforms are managed by the least experienced among you?



This is the reality of social media today. Because we let anyone do it, social media becomes crazy and ugly. But this isn’t acting. It takes hard work and a skill set that is hard to find.

So few marketers have the time, the inclination, the creativity AND (not “or”) the marketing expertise to really drive engagement. We end out with 1-2% and call it a success. We should be aiming for 20%. 10% should be a fire-able offense.

Professionally managed, a strong social media presence can do more to increase revenue and influence than any other single medium. Given that, why are our expectations so low? We have to start setting the bar higher… much higher. When we do, the results will be astounding.

Now, we know what you’re thinking, so… 

“I told my psychiatrist that everyone hates me. He said I was being ridiculous - everyone hasn't met me yet.”

Bruce McArthur

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