Social Media does not build a brand


As you probably know, I have been in the radio sales business for over 30 years. And not a week goes by that someone says that the radio business is dying due to satellite radio or Pandora or Spotify. Actually, the reality is the opposite; as a matter of fact more than 90% of North Americans tune into radio on a weekly basis. And less than 10% of North Americans have satellite radio. 

But the main point of this blog is social media. More and more advertisers are putting more and more dollars into social media advertising and some are even putting all their eggs in the social media basket. Does this make sense? Let’s consider a few points. How many people see your company facebook post? The answer is up for debate but it can be as little as 1%. And what’s a like worth? Does it mean I will but the product? Not likely. And facebook is the current social media leader followed by Instagram, Twitter and Snapchat. 

With respect to digital media, there is Google ad words and SEO. Although these are more effective in brand buildings, they face similar challenges. Google ad words becomes like the old Yellow Pages – whoever spends the most wins. And now you can buy your competitors name which almost seems unethical. SEO is also very important but can be done through keyword placement. 

And of course there is the lack of control of your message. Just take a look at the Microsoft debacle.

Sometimes, science is simply better left alone. For example, the time Microsoft decided to make an “AI” Twitter bot. The creation was designed to learn from its users through conversation. Needless to say, trolls made the bot, named Tay, turn into a huge racist jerk in less than a day. As a result, Microsoft’s research team quickly deleted the tweets and put the project on pause. 

So the message is simple. Beware of social media, do not put all your eggs in one basket and consider tradional media if you want to build your brand. 

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