Making All Media Social: How to Achieve the Holy Grail of Marketing

How important is social? Very. Underlining it, capitalizing it and making it bold will still understate its importance.

Think about it this way: How do you start your day?

Ten years ago, it was probably by checking your email, logging on to your favorite website or maybe by searching something on Google.

Today, most of us start our day with our friends on our social media platform of choice. Twitter for news junkies. Pinterest for those looking to be inspired. Facebook, sure. LinkedIn for the business folks. People look at the pictures, read the posts, consider ideas and consume content. Discovery starts with social. The search era is ending.

Do you want a statistic? How about this one: In the past two years, the market value of Facebook soared 300%, while the market value of Google rose 30%. That’s 10:1. Facebook is one of many social platforms. Google is 90% of search. The real ratio of social value to search value is easily 15 or 20 to 1.

It’s time for media—all media—to catch up.

The benefits of social curation, discovery and inspiration are mammoth. Social leads to better engagement, a more robust dialogue and the opportunity to collect otherwise unattainable insights.

What’s the solution? Make ALL media social.

While we all work in and around pharma, most of us are not immersed in science speak in our few non-office hours. As a proxy, let’s substitute more relatable content. For me, that’s sports.

I visit ESPN.com. They know I like hockey and not NASCAR. They know the columnists I read. That’s great “one-dimensional” knowledge. If they knew my friends, ESPN could create a landing page of content tailored just for me based on multiple dimensions—essentially a Pinterest-esque experience curating their content based on what’s trending in my world.

Hey, wait. ESPN can know my friends. I could log in using credentials from my favorite social media platform—LinkedIn, Twitter, Facebook, etc. Bingo. ESPN already knows what I read or watch there. Now, ESPN knows who I like. And, by extension what my friends like—what they just read, the videos they just watched. Mixing ESPN’s destination-specific knowledge with social connections provides ESPN with the unique set of content trends just for me.

With a little technical magic, ESPN becomes a social media platform. It curates its content for me based on me and my world—what’s trending on Twitter turn into what’s trending on ESPN.com. Nifty, huh?

Let’s check our list: Better engagement, yep. Robust dialogue, check. Collect insights, you betcha.

So let’s get back to our day jobs. Would this work for clinicians?

Of course. We have published results in PM360 and elsewhere that show how social-enabled media outperforms traditional media for HCPs. Now, think of socially enabling JAMA, NEJM, WebMD, brand.com, unbranded.com, brandPRO.com and even brandCONSUMER.com

Now for the mind-expanding part. It’s not just about websites. You can socially enable ALL media.

For instance, apps can make conferences in numerous therapeutic categories social for HCPs. Even email—the backbone of modern digital engagement—is ripe for social too. Want an example? Then ask Karysse Robinson, a Senior Media Planner at CMI/Compas.

“Our client wanted to engage thousands of HCPs on an individual level,” she explains. “The brand created content to spark a debate. We used the HCPs’ personal interests and social connections to tailor our content assets in a social media-driven email campaign to tell our story in thousands of different ways. Some would say that’s enough. The real payoff is the data that comes back to make our story better each time we tell it.”

Enabling social in ALL media makes otherwise non-personal promotion personal. The Holy Grail of marketers.

How important is social in YOUR media?

  • Charles Benaiah

    Charles Benaiah is the Chief Executive Officer of watzan. He is a former venture capitalist with a passion for personalization. In 2008, he started Sequence—the first content personalization system for clinicians.

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