ComScore’s latest data about advertising online shows that social networks are garnering ad dollars from pretty much everyone except big brands. Social networking sites now account for one out of every five ads people view online
“This (big brands not advertising on social sites) could be the result of the long-held obsession with using clicks to measure ad effectiveness [since] social networking sites have notoriously low click-through rates,” explained Andrew Lipsman, director of industry analysis at comScore. “But large brand advertisers should be looking at different metrics to evaluate advertising effectiveness online, since brand-building ads can be very effective without user engagement or clicks. The ad exposures themselves have value. I would expect that once this addiction to clicks is broken, more of the major brand advertisers will utilize this channel more effectively.”
Content that sparks conversations in social media sites is very effective for brand building. Much more so than advertising. It’s not about the click through rate – it’s about how people perceive and talk about your brand.
And according to Equation Research’s 2009 Marketing Industry Trends Report within the next year an astonishing 82 percent of brand marketers will be using social media to promote their brand.
Social media is best done by people within your company – your customers want to talk to your employees.
The Cluetrain Manifesto said it best
Brand loyalty is the corporate version of going steady, but the breakup is inevitable—and coming fast. Because they are networked, smart markets are able to renegotiate relationships with blinding speed.
Markets do not want to talk to flacks and hucksters. They want to participate in the conversations going on behind the corporate firewall.
We are immune to advertising. Just forget it. If you want us to talk to you, tell us something. Make it something interesting for a change.
This Equation Research study reiterates what several others have found: the biggest barrier to a company starting a social media program is a lack of knowledge. Social media training is vital to your marketing success in 2009 and 2010.
Image Credit: L Rargerich