Branding Ideas℠

Advertising and Socialism

No, not that kind of socialism. We’re talking about social networks like Twitter and Facebook. Social networks aren’t exactly new anymore, but in the timeline of advertising, they’re fairly new models. These networking sites and other communications platforms have become central to our online and social experiences (Twitter and Facebook are two of the most popular sites on the Internet), and yet they’ve struggled to develop advertising-driven revenue. It’s partly because they’ve failed to prove to marketers that they’re going to get enough bang for their buck. The biggest reason is that most people who use social media are there to interact with their friends, family and colleagues, not a company that’s trying to sell them something. However, consumers of TV and print have long accepted that paid ad placements are part and parcel to their viewing and reading experiences, and in recent years even moviegoers have relucantly accepted commercials in theaters despite lots of initial pushback. So maybe time is the answer. As social networking becomes broader, used for business and other means, perhaps we’ll be more open to it. The key to any advertising endeavor, of course, is to assess what the opportunities and risks are for your company and, of course, find out who’s doing it right. After all, someone has to take the first plunge!


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