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TRUST DRIVES TRANSACTIONS: Why Marketing Must Go Social
TRUST DRIVES TRANSACTIONS: Why Marketing Must Go Social
TRUST DRIVES TRANSACTIONS: Why Marketing Must Go Social
TRUST DRIVES TRANSACTIONS: Why Marketing Must Go Social
TRUST DRIVES TRANSACTIONS: Why Marketing Must Go Social
TRUST DRIVES TRANSACTIONS: Why Marketing Must Go Social
TRUST DRIVES TRANSACTIONS: Why Marketing Must Go Social
TRUST DRIVES TRANSACTIONS: Why Marketing Must Go Social
TRUST DRIVES TRANSACTIONS: Why Marketing Must Go Social
TRUST DRIVES TRANSACTIONS: Why Marketing Must Go Social
TRUST DRIVES TRANSACTIONS: Why Marketing Must Go Social
TRUST DRIVES TRANSACTIONS: Why Marketing Must Go Social
TRUST DRIVES TRANSACTIONS: Why Marketing Must Go Social
TRUST DRIVES TRANSACTIONS: Why Marketing Must Go Social
TRUST DRIVES TRANSACTIONS: Why Marketing Must Go Social
TRUST DRIVES TRANSACTIONS: Why Marketing Must Go Social
TRUST DRIVES TRANSACTIONS: Why Marketing Must Go Social
TRUST DRIVES TRANSACTIONS: Why Marketing Must Go Social
TRUST DRIVES TRANSACTIONS: Why Marketing Must Go Social
TRUST DRIVES TRANSACTIONS: Why Marketing Must Go Social
TRUST DRIVES TRANSACTIONS: Why Marketing Must Go Social
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TRUST DRIVES TRANSACTIONS: Why Marketing Must Go Social

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LAS VEGAS, NEVADA, USA - January 7, 2009 - This is the presentation I gave at the 2009 Consumer Electronics Show's Social Media Jungle event. …

LAS VEGAS, NEVADA, USA - January 7, 2009 - This is the presentation I gave at the 2009 Consumer Electronics Show's Social Media Jungle event.

SYNOPSIS: In an era where trust and consumer confidence is at a historic low, how can marketers move the needle? I assert that the broader cultural trends indicate decreased efficacy of traditional marketing techniques and an opportunity for marketers to build trust through social marketing rather than following long-used intrusion and interruption techniques.

As a marketer, I want my efforts and my craft to produce real value for my markets, rather than unnecessary, irrelevant noise.

SPEAKER NOTES:

SLIDE 1:
Banks are failing. Government is bailing. Property values are falling. When confidence is gone, how do we sell?

SLIDE 2:
We’re seeing this across the board: business is frozen in place. Decisions are put on hold, hires are postponed, and above all, risk within corporations is avoided. Marketers fall back to known tactics, even when the entire strategy behind those tactics is based on 80s and 90s thinking. No one wants to get fired, so innovation stops, even if it might be the absolute right thing to do.

As marketers, we’re seeing dwindling efficacy across a wide variety of channels and media. Our jobs are on the line. Many of us see the promise in social marketing. Others also see how traditional push- and intrusion-based marketing approaches are not only meaningless anymore, but they make us feel dirty as well.

So how do we push fearful managers past their reticence? How do we persuade CMOs that the fail-safes of the past may fail – and that new techniques might actually create the transactions we need to hit? Here are some basic concepts from previous presentations, compacted down to a 20-minute talk.

SLIDE 3:
First off, let’s talk about marketing. This business, this craft of the outbound voice - classic monolog marketing - is highly refined. It’s taught in advanced university degrees, it has a plethora of trade organizations. Of course it would, it’s had 100 years to mature.

I remember as a kid watching Bewtiched, mostly because of a childhood crush on Elizabeth Montgomery but also because I thought Darren Stevens had the coolest job on the planet: selling creative ideas. And his agency was a classic example of how business approached consumers when geography and limited information worked to advertisers’ advantages and consumers didn’t have a lot of choices. In those days, simple approaches like “good to the last drop” or “tastes good like a cigarette should” could work.

Secondly, entire industries are sprung around the tools. There’s a Direct Marketing Association. An Email Marketing Association. A word of mouth marketing association. There’s a trade org for nearly every miniscule sub-practice of marketing. Advertising, PR, event marketing – each are their own highly refined science. And we have lots of specialty agencies in each subpractice who’ve made millions focusing on various marketing channels.

There’s a huge lexicon around marketing. Call-to-action, pre-campaign analytics, market penetration, reach and frequency – when small business owners listen to many marketers, I’m sure they’re confused at best.

Finally, this marketing machine, which controls trillions of dollars of spend, is incented, rewarded and focused on skill with the outbound voice. This leads to job security which is a powerful motivator toward…keeping the status quo.

SLIDE 4:
And so, when the connective power and community size of various social networks became more clear to marketers, they and/or their agencies often saw social sites as tasty media morsels - easy to reach audiences ready for the taking. Agencies took their honed intrusion skillset to Facebook, YouTube and MySpace, buying display ads and later, branded social network presences. “I’ll take a fan page and a Twitter campaign, and oooh, look at this tas

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  • Banks are failing. Government is bailing. Property houses are falling. When confidence is gone, how do we sell?
  • We’re seeing this across the board: business is frozen in place. Decisions are put on hold, hires are postponed, and above all, risk within corporations is avoided. Marketers fall back to known tactics, even when the entire strategy behind those tactics is based on 80s and 90s thinking. No one wants to get fired, so innovation stops, even if it might be the absolute right thing to do.
    As marketers, we’re seeing dwindling efficacy across a wide variety of channels and media. Our jobs are on the line. Many of us see the promise in social marketing. Others also see how traditional push- and intrusion-based marketing approaches are not only meaningless anymore, but they make us feel dirty as well.
    So how do we push fearful managers past their reticence? How do we persuade CMOs that the fail-safes of the past may fail – and that new techniques might actually create the transactions we need to hit? Here are some basic concepts from previous presentations, compacted down to a 20-minute talk.
  • First off, let’s talk about marketing. This business, this craft of the outbound voice - classic monolog marketing - is highly refined. It’s taught in advanced university degrees, it has a plethora of trade organizations. Of course it would, it’s had 100 years to mature.
    I remember as a kid watching Bewtiched, mostly because of a childhood crush on Elizabeth Montgomery but also because I thought Darren Stevens had the coolest job on the planet: selling creative ideas. And his agency was a classic example of how business approached consumers when geography and limited information worked to advertisers’ advantages and consumers didn’t have a lot of choices. In those days, simple approaches like “good to the last drop” or “tastes good like a cigarette should” could work.
    Secondly, entire industries are sprung around the tools. There’s a Direct Marketing Association. An Email Marketing Association. A word of mouth marketing association. There’s a trade org for nearly every miniscule sub-practice of marketing. Advertising, PR, event marketing – each are their own highly refined science. And we have lots of specialty agencies in each subpractice who’ve made millions focusing on various marketing channels.
    There’s a huge lexicon around marketing. Call-to-action, pre-campaign analytics, market penetration, reach and frequency – when small business owners listen to many marketers, I’m sure they’re confused at best.
    Finally, this marketing machine, which controls trillions of dollars of spend, is incented, rewarded and focused on skill with the outbound voice. This leads to job security which is a powerful motivator toward…keeping the status quo.
  • And so, when the connective power and community size of various social networks became more clear to marketers, they and/or their agencies often saw social sites as tasty media morsels - easy to reach audiences ready for the taking. Agencies took their honed intrusion skillset to Facebook, YouTube and MySpace, buying display ads and later, branded social network presences. “I’ll take a fan page and a Twitter campaign, and oooh, look at this tasty MySpace promotional opportunity!”
  • But of course, the numbers weren’t there. This turned off advertisers, who didn’t understand that push and intrusion was what consumers were trying to evade. I spoke to the managing director of a huge digital agency who said, “yeah, we tried creating ads for Facebook. We didn’t see much in terms of revenue. So we’re not very interested in social media.”
    That sound you heard was me slapping my forehead.
  • Advertisers didn’t realize that advertising on social networks was like Amway salesmen showing up at a private dinner party. No one wanted them there – it wasn’t the right context in which to sell.
  • Let’s take a look at consumers. We’ve got attention deficit, we’re fragmented by a million niche interests, and we feel time-starved. In fact, there’s a Girl Scout merit badge for Time Management. We’re so bad we’re trying to teach young girls how to wring every single second of productivity out of their days. That’s nuts.
    And what’s up with the guys talking on the phone while they’re on the can? I don’t want to hear that, you don’t want to hear that. If we’re talking on the phone while relieving ourselves, perhaps we’re a little too time-starved.
    We’re incredibly distrustful of advertising, spoilt silly by customization of everything from apparel to website profiles to even our cars. We can get media anywhere, anyhow, anytime. And concerning this media, time starvation has transformed us into “snack media” consumers…with time only for small snippets of information – not long-form commercials or page after page of website content.
  • And with the advent of widespread internet technologies, the power has shifted from manufacturers and “opinion-makers” to consumers.
    SEARCH lets us find anything we want, anything we feel relevance with.
    Consumers can also EXPRESS themselves like never before. Traditionally this was done over the back fence, around the water cooler, or over the phone. Now, we can express our opinions to a vast audience – or important audiences.
    Finally we can SHARE things we find. We can share things we love, and why. We can also share things we HATE. And that might be the most recent interaction with your company.
    The stark reality for marketers like me: generally, consumers do not want, nor need marketing, advertising or PR.
    This is a HUGE wakeup call for marketers. A lot of what we do is unwanted – in particular, interruptive, intrusive advertising efforts.
  • Consider this: the consumer has a quest or task: to find information about a solution to a problem they face. That could be dentures that don’t fall out, the safest baby strollers, whether or not “organic” and “natural” mean the same thing, or where they might go for dinner tonight. What do advertisers do to try to achieve their own goals? Interrupt, intrude, block, sidetrack and in general, stop consumers from their goals.
    When marketers (and the companies they are marketing) work toward their own efforts and against consumers, marketing spend loses efficacy, relevance and most importantly, CREATES DISTRUST. Look at the flashing, blinding LED billboards on the freeway – the ones with video or animation. Advertisers are desperately trying to get your attention. Yet it’s not to help you…it’s to hit a sales target. You know it. They know it. And they’re willing to have you jeopardize your life and safety in the hopes you’ll call that 1-800 number.
    That’s not the kind of business I want to be in.
  • In the past, we had a small group of people in the press, in advertising, who were forming opinion for the masses. And since the masses had no real way to be heard, we primarily had monologue.
    But now, there are MANY voices bombarding your market – in equal volume. Employees can be heard as easily as investors or customers or the government – sometimes their voices are louder than your marketing spend. It’s the New Cacophony.
  • And with such a cacophony, when you have a decision to make or a problem to solve, it’s human nature to seek out recommendations from people you trust.
    We do this when risk is higher, when there are more choices to sift through, and, because we’re time starved, when we just don’t have the time to dig into things.
  • Where do people turn? To peers. Nearly 60% of those surveyed in our 2008 trust study believe what “a person like me” says about an organization. This has gone up 7% in one year.
    Whom do they believe in least? Marketers. You can see here that in younger age groups, people trust advertising the least of all sources. Think about that: traditional marketing mixes are the least credible source of information for an entire generation of consumers.
    Maybe it’s time for business to rethink how we approach and engage with our markets.
  • Peer recommendation is also self-reinforcing. If I mention to a trusted friend or colleague that I LOVE Virgin America and had an awesome experience with them, that opinion will generally be trusted. But if I mention that to you and you hear the same thing from someone else, the trust jumps to 78-83%.
  • So clearly word of mouth is highly influential. It’s also widely shared.
    Social media and networking allow us to spread our word of mouth influence across geographic boundaries. Our Trust Barometer shows that between 56 and 63% of opinion elites were likely to share opinions and experiences about companies they trust or distrust online.
    And here’s a thought: because of Google’s archiving abilities, these opinions transcend the boundaries of time, as well. So a negative opinion posted in 2005 will be easily found in 2008, long after it’s been corrected.
  • Finally, trust drives preference. We see here that fully 88% of opinion elites choose to buy from trusted firms, and 85% refuse to by from distrusted firms. The purchasing decisions of influencers are hugely driven by trust or a lack of it.
    And leads us to perhaps the most important point of all: Trust drives transactions. Much more so than intrusion/interruption marketing.
  • I counsel my clients that you don’t need an advertising strategy. You don’t need a Twitter strategy. And you certainly don’t need a “social media strategy.”
    You need a Trust Strategy.
  • How do you minimize things that can kill trust? That doesn’t mean silencing market dialogue, but it does mean engaging naysayers at times and working to mitigate negativity. But also, it means provide more great, valuable content about your brand/product/company to be found, rather than interrupting a consumer’s journey. And show interest in your market, not your revenue goals. The revenue will come when consumers feel they’re not being exploited.
    Also, work on the internal value chain to correct issues in customer service, corporate social behavior and delivery that would generate loud, public negative voice. Quality product or service is always the best way to generate trust.
    Finally, empower the market to spread the good word about your offering. Provide them with valuable functionality or content and make it easily shared. In fact, make it effortless to share.
  • These are a few thought-starters on how to use social programs to create shareable value.
  • On a final note, I counsel my clients to consider the lens in which they perceive social media.
    I’m 47, and people my age were generally taught to “put your best foot forward.” “Never let them see you sweat.’ Be the most presentable to the widest possible audience. Don’t offend. Never talk about politics or religion in business. Don’t give anyone any details to use against you.
    In other words, cast your net as widely as possible in ways that don’t offend.
    But millenials have been trained completely differently. They could care less about formalities. They are happy to share personal information and are willing to give up privacy if it means better connections with like minds.
    So what might feel “weird” to you, if you’re in the older group, doesn’t feel weird at all to younger folks who are in your market. In fact, they’d prefer warts and all.
    Consider the business suit. How important is it that you wear one? Chances are, if your buyers are older, wearing formal business attire is very important and leads to trust. But with younger generations, wearing a suit actually means you’re less likely to be trusted.
    If a suit is important within your organization, I’m thinking you’ll need to talk about this “lens difference” with more people.
  • So to wrap up, I really encourage you all to rethink your entire approach to your market. All that spend on direct mail blasts, on tradeshow booths, on ad campaigns or radio spots: what if that went toward a salary or two of community engagers who could not only monitor and guide the dialogue around your brand, but could engage with key markets and demonstrate value to prospective brand zealots? The 5% response rate to your direct campaign: what if that campaign budget went to a remarkable video or a Facebook branded fan page that corralled conversation among trust networks?
    Be in the endzone, don’t be interference.
    And finally, trust already exists between people. Don’t try to buy new trust – instead, leverage word-of-mouth and the trust already inherent between consumers.
    RETHINK.
  • You can find me all over the web. I do my primary business networking on Facebook (that’s right), share my presentations on SlideShare, comment on trends and events on Twitter. You can also follow it all, should you have time and interest, on FriendFeed.
    THANK YOU.
    Eric Weaver
    Brand Dialogue
    +1 206 905 9328
  • Transcript

    • 1. TRUST DRIVES TRANSACTIONS: Why marketing must go social PHOTO: FLICKR @JOE NANGLE ERIC WEAVER, Brand Dialogue
    • 2. In a down economy…  Risk is avoided at all costs  The known supercedes the unknown  Management retreats to fail-safes As marketers or social media proponents, we’ll face hesitation as we propose new tools and approaches to the market during a down economy. So let’s look at a set of arguments to push the hesitant past their risk aversion.
    • 3. WHERE WE ARE YESTERDAY The Outbound Voice  Highly refined  Entire industries built around channel tools  Specialist agencies that gave way to the idea/promise of integrated marketing firms  Buzzword bingo  Effective voice + market impact = job security
    • 4. “Oooh, yummeh!!”
    • 5. Let’s look at consumers.  Attention-deficit  Fragmented by niche interests  Feeling time-starved  Girl Scouts merit badge  Cell phone in the john  Distrustful of advertising  Spoiled by customization and media options  “Snack-media” consumers
    • 6. Wake-up call: the powershift.  SEARCH lets consumers find people, products, information and media of interest & relevance  EXPRESSION through blogs, podcasts, opinion sites, online communities  SHARING items of value or interest – globally  Items they love…. and hate THE REALITY: To get what they want, consumers generally don’t need marketing, advertising or PR. !
    • 7. “As he eyed his goal, he was confronted by a daunting array of SKYSCRAPERS, INTERSTITIALS, VIDEO PRE-ROLLS and POP-UNDERS.”
    • 8. MARKETERS MEDIA TRADE ORGS EMPLOYEES NGOs CUSTOMERS ANALYSTS INVESTORS GOVERNMENT The new cacophony.
    • 9. With so many voices in the mix… People turn to peers for recommendations. They also do this when:  Risk is higher  More choices to review and filter  They have less time to research
    • 10. In fact, peers are the most credible source of company/product info 58% believe what “a person like me” says about an organization (up from 51% in 2007) LEAST CREDIBLE (IN THE US): corporate or product advertising (22% of ages 25-34) SOURCE: 2008 Edelman Trust Barometer
    • 11. 78% aged 35-64 and 83% aged 25-34 were “likely to trust what they have seen, read or heard about a company if someone they know has already mentioned it to them.”* *SOURCE: 2008 Edelman Trust Barometer Peer trust is self- reinforcing.
    • 12. 56% of those aged 35-64 and 63%aged 25-34 were “likely to share their opinions and experiences about companies they trust or distrust on the web.”* *SOURCE: 2008 Edelman Trust Barometer Peer recommendation isn’t just influential. Trust and distrust are widely shared.
    • 13. And trust drives preference. 88%of opinion elites choose to buy from companies they trust. 85% refuse to buy from companies they distrust.* *SOURCE: 2008 Edelman Trust Barometer The bottom line: Trust drives transactions.
    • 14. FLICKR @POWERBOOKTRANCE YOU NEED A TRUST STRATEGY. You don’t need an advertising strategy. You don’t need a “Twitter strategy.” And you don’t need a “social media strategy.”
    • 15. And that would mean…  How do I minimize trust killers?  Change your spend to be found, rather than intrude. Stop pushing, start pulling.  Interest in your market, not in your lead targets.  How do I build trust across the value chain?  Corporate social behavior, customer service, delivery, quality. Consumer voice amplifies these issues.  How do I empower the market to spread their trust in my offering?  Give them a voice, amplify their efforts, make value-sharing effortless.
    • 16. Ways to demonstrate value and empower your market BLOGGING  Product manager insights  CEO media/investor relations MICROBLOGGING (Twitter)  Special offers  Event buzz VIDEO (one-off virals or recurring podcasts)  Product how-to’s  Personality pieces  Company storytelling  Humor WIDGETS  Content distribution/sharing AUDIO (podcasts)  Company storytelling  Thought leadership WIKIS  Event planning  Product development  Shared learnings  Distributed work-in-progress SOCIAL & TOPICAL NETWORKS  Brand awareness  Community/CSR discussion  Community building  Feedback/testing/trials
    • 17. And a final note: consider your “lens” Boomers/Tweeners  Trained in formalities  Don’t offend anyone  Be the most acceptable to the largest number of people  Privacy highly valued  Interested in tech functionality but often overwhelmed by speed of change Gen X/Millenials  Formalities ignored  More interested in finding those with like minds than worrying about turning off others  Less privacy means more ability to be found  Digital natives – tech is ubiquitous and easy
    • 18. In summary Rethink your entire marketing approach, from outbound monologue to full engagement Build trust by being found, providing value, and not interrupting consumers on their journey to find what they want Use social marketing to leverage the existing trust already established between peers, rather than trying to buy new trust
    • 19. THANK YOU. facebook.ericweaver.com slideshare.net/weave twitter.com/weave friendfeed.com/weave

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