- A Shel of My Former Self
- All Things WOM
- Andrew Lark
- B.L. Ochman's weblog
- Church of the Customer
- John Palfrey
- KDPaine's PR Measurement Blog
- Steve Rubel Lifestream
- PR Communications
- PR Opinions
- PR Squared
- Seth Godin's Blog
- The Sam Whitmore Sampler - Media Shop Talk
- Strategic Public Relations
- The WOMMA Word
Marketing and PR Resources
from facebook to face time, part 1
I’m fascinated by the intersection of social media and real life. The scope of this opportunity first crystallized for me in the early 2000’s during Montreal’s JazzFest – an inconspicuous “wall” for leaving messages (facebook colour scheme and all) was a reminder that social networking runs much deeper than a Web site or mobile app. Social networking – in case you lost sight of it too – is a human trend, NOT a technology trend.
(Montreal Jazzfest "Walls")
As a result, marketers who silo themselves in “digital” or “physical” are inevitably missing the boat. Our customers don’t perceive distinct communication channels; our customers don’t differentiate between a brand on the shelf and one on facebook; and our customers don’t only “gather” on message forums. Then, why are we communicating and campaigning separately? To capitalize on the human experience in social networking, one must consider it beyond technology. The office water cooler is simply a signifier; it is the “gathering” that gives it meaning.
Then, how are we bridging digital and physical “gathering” today? Perhaps most prominent is the rise of geo-location tools such as FourSquare or facebook Places; these tools allow us to bring the physical to the digital, to advertise and coordinate our physical location with our digital friends and communities. Less obvious is the emerging world of augmented reality, or AR, which intends to bring digital information into the physical world. Powered by the growth in smartphones, these tools provide a foundation for connecting the digital and the physical.
Unfortunately, most brands struggle to connect the “brick” and the “click.” Organizations that have expanded to the Web (e.g. WeightWatchers.com) appear to be ahead, while companies that are digital natives (e.g. DailyBurn.com) remain there. Moreover, the siloed origins of each creates a dichotomy of expertise and resources – DailyBurn was first-to-market with mobile fitness apps, but it has not even made a dent in the physical world. In contrast, WeightWatchers is slower to innovate digitally (granted, their message forums are some of the best-attended), but the brand has a best-of-breed “physical” program. Perhaps those brick-and-mortar brands are not as doomed as predicted?
Thinking about it another way, many community centers will develop Web sites, but very few Web sites will develop community centers. In this example, though, it’s worth noting that the “community center” is a “water cooler,” one defined by the social gathering rather than by the physical landmark. WeightWatchers members need not meet at a branded “center”; in fact, given the preponderance of GPS-enabled smartphones today, even sharing a landmark or latitude/longitude coordinates will do. (Such is the basis of flash mobs).
- Then, what’s keeping DailyBurn from coordinating its own “fitness meet-ups” at an arbitrary location?
- Why aren’t haircare brands mobilizing the curly-haired community at local salons?
- Why are sporting arenas, casinos, hotels, and other physical “gathering” venues not taking advantage in the digital world? (yes, I’ve mentioned this before… here)
These are critical questions – with the emergence of geolocation and AR technology, digital brands have the opportunity to leap into the physical world at little-to-no cost. Physical brands, too, have an opportunity but in the form of better connecting their real-world investments with their digital communities.
At this point, I’ve hopefully peaked your interest. Next week I’ll detail some of my favorite physical-digital applications – from the mainstream to the totally bizarre – and follow-up with campaign ideas. In the meantime, leave a comment, and let me know what you think!
Posted by Omri Duek on January 7, 2011 at 06:47 AM | Email this post
Technorati Tags: advertising, AR, augmented reality, dailyburn, digital, facebook, flash mobs, marketing, monitoring, social media, weightwatchers
TrackBack URL for this entry:
Listed below are links to weblogs that reference from facebook to face time, part 1:
Totally agree with you. face book means hit the wall!! thanks dude..very interesting!!
Posted by: Marketing Job Descriptions | Jan 27, 2011 6:37:48 AM
The comments to this entry are closed.
- Kim Kardashian is...Influential?!
- 'Listen to Mom': Important Advice for Brands as Well As Kids
- Occupy Wall Street - Don't forget the hashtag
- Social Media Listening: Is There Value For the Business User?
- Moms: What Drives Their Food Decisions?
- the myspace-ing of facebook
- from facebook to facetime, pt 2 – 3 paradigmatic examples
- from facebook to face time, part 1
- Is Digital (and Social) Impersonal?
- The First Moment of Truth has Gone Digital!
- Agency Solutions
- Company Info
- Consumer Products
- Consumer Technology
- Customer Service Solutions
- Financial Services
- Food and Drink
- Market Research
- Marketing Solutions
- PR Solutions
- Public Relations
- Social Media
- Add me to your TypePad People list
- Subscribe to this blog's feed