The Echo Chamber of My Life

Posted on February 26, 2009

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On the train this morning I was thinking about social media marketing.  Shocking, right?  These days it seems like that's all I think about.  In any case, I'm often charged with advising clients about where to find their target market.  Where it gets interesting is when I'm the target market.  Then I start to examine where I find things and how I uncover cool stuff and try to get to the bottom of the age-old question, "is Facebook the best place for a marketer to reach me?"

In a lot of cases, I think marketers are all just talking to themselves in one big echo chamber.  Harsh?  Maybe, but I'm a marketer so I feel justified in saying so.  We're all pushing Facebook groups and YouTube strategies and talking about what we've done and how we can measure it.  That's great when it works, but there are very few examples of it happening.  In the meantime, me and the rest of the Gen XYZers are going about our business ignoring all the Facebook groups we signed up for and chatting with our friends… taking their recommendations for products instead. 

Until one day…

… you become the Facebook ad.  Others have talked about this too, but I was recently told I was the face of the ad for a product I'm a fan of.  I didn't say that was ok.  Or if I did, I didn't know it.  I may like your group and want to rave about your product, but if that's the case, I'll tell my friends how cool it is.  You don't need my photo on an ad that people are trying to ignore.  Please leave me out of that nonsense.

So, what can marketers do?  They can be authentic.  They can ask me to try their products.  They can show up at stores, send me emails if they want or they can spend some time living and breathing in my world or hiring someone that does.  This is where focus groups and product communities are great — online or in person — they really give you a sense of what your audience is thinking/feeling/wanting/needing.  A little retro, but still effective.

Just know, if you see me advertising something on Facebook, it's not because I think I'm a model.  Although there is something appealing about getting a gig in one of those old fashioned dish soap commericals.  A girl can dream. 

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