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Is Social Media your new Mass Media?

Invention of technologies such as radio and then television changed the way we live. With them came the new definition of entertainment and the new mediums for advertisement and infomercials. Radio and TV truly proved to be successful medium of communication, broadcasting message to mass audience. Businesses have effectively used these mediums to create bigger brand image and revenue streams. Well the conversation so far is no brainer but with advent of Social Media and technology to support it, has the conversation changed?

               There is no doubt that social media has been making businesses and personal brands more successful. Businesses and advertisers have started to bring both mediums together in one.  They use TV to broadcast the message, visual experience and story and social media for all of those plus the conversation and audience engagement. The prefect example is the Oreo’s recent social media success story during the power outage at Super Bowl XLVII. Their perfect tagline “You can still dunk in the dark” on twitter and Facebook created social media marketing history. Oreo’s TV commercials along with real time social media response made Oreo the winner of the “Super Bowl Commercial League (SCL)”

Companies of all sizes are leveraging social media but this channel has become especially important to smaller and upcoming companies since they don’t have huge budgets to spend on infomercials and other forms of advertisement. Social media serves as medium to broadcast message to wider target audience and encourage audience engagement. It is also the perfect medium to create personal brands and advance careers.  After all who doesn’t know success stories of celebrities such as Justin Bieber, and “Call me may be” star Carly Rea Jepsen who were born on Youtube. Social media has found its acceptance in the non-profit world, so has it given voice to political and social change. Most recent example is political revolution in Egypt accelerated by social media.

Oreo had great success in creating the buzz using social media channel but it will be interesting to understand whether that impacted their sales, brand image and other facets of business.  An important aspect of  doing social media well is to include the ability to monitor, track, measure and analyze how these conversations are enhancing or decimating company’s or personal brands, adding $$$ to their revenue stream and much more.

Social Media is here to stay and it is going to further augment all aspects of our social living and impact how we run businesses and how we interact with people. Having the right tools is important to make sense of social conversations (read more need for Social Analytics) in this digital world where conversations are transcending borders and opinion of the masses do matter.  It is time that we understand these conversations better.

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