Conversation Media Marketing Catching Up With Social Media
Updated: Feb 2
We sapiens as a race have a longing to connect with our fellow sapiens. Actually, it is more than just longing, it is a need. And this need is the very foundation of human civilization.
This need is also what made social media such a big hit. It gave a way for people to connect from the comfort of their own home. Marketing like it does with other trends soon caught up with this as brands found another broadcasting channel. The sheer number of users on early Facebook days made it the sweet spot for Marketers. Facebook, along with other mediums like Instagram and Twitter, became excellent mediums for the Brands to reach the users.
But does it really work anymore? Brands have been asking that question a lot in regards to social media recently.
How Did Social Media Lose Its Charm?
1 Too Many Users - With passing years the numbers of users have skyrocketed in all popular social media platforms. Although this was one of the best advantages that social media marketing had, the increasing number does make targeted marketing more difficult. The algorithms are getting more complicated too. In 2020, there are a total of 3.81 active social media users in the world. That might seem an excellent statistic to a layman but anyone who has tried to do social media marketing in 2020 can say that reaching those potential consumers out of those 3.81 Billion people is extremely difficult.
2 Too Many Players - Social media has given a whole new meaning to the word influencers. Influencers are a brand in themselves. Add this to millions of brands on social media and you have way too many players.
Suppose your ideal user follows you on all platforms but even so the number of posts he/she sees on their feeds makes it harder for any brand to make a real impression on a user who actually follows them. Let alone a potential user who doesn't follow the brand.
3 The Paranoia - In the past couple of years many sites have faced allegations of data theft. Add to it the advertisements that follow users around for months on the internet because they searched for a product once on their browser and you get freaked out users.
Things like this have made people paranoid and have raised trust issues between brands and users. In some eerie cases, users have even reported that they never searched for the product but just talked about it and were shown advertisements.
Many users also say that such advertisements are nothing more than an annoyance when they follow you through email and even text messages even after you leave the internet.
4 The Evolution - Like everything else social media has inevitably evolved. In the early days of social media, the algorithms were simple and users couldn't really get out of watching ads. But with the evolution of social media users can skip ads, opt-out from subscriptions, unfollow brands, decide whether or not they want to share their information. All these things make it really difficult for brands to have the success that the early birds of brand marketing on social media used to.
5 The Social Media Boycott - Brands have been social distancing from social media, particularly Facebook ads after the #stophateforprofit campaign caught on. Brands have always been concerned the sites their ads would get associated with. But it is with certain recent activities of malicious content that promotes racism, sexism and other themes that are derogatory for certain groups in the society available on social media Billion Dollar brands like Uniliver have decided to stop their ads on Facebook, Instagram, and Twitter indefinitely.
Other Food brands like Cocacola and Hersheys are also reevaluating their social media campaigns and meanwhile have distanced themselves from Social Media. Overall more than 1000 companies have Boycotted Facebook. From Automobile company such as Honda to Telecommunication like Verizon, the boycott doesn't seem to be restricted to just Food companies.
6 The Fallout - Both Brands and Users are shifting gears distancing themselves from social media. Users might do it because of Paranoia, information overload, or just because their introvert nature doesn't enjoy the loud social media. Brands might do it because of lack of user intent, complex algorithms, and the fear of getting associated with malicious content. Although there is no indication of social media being taken out of existence. A near-future fall out of social media is predicted.
How Can Conversation Media Make a Difference
Social Media was the new age thing that completely took the world by storm and there is no denying that but change is always needed. Conversation media is the change that brands need and it can help them connect with users on a much personal level than social media used to.
Before we get into the why let us take another look at What Conversation Media really is - Conversation Media - It is the umbrella term that covers all forms of online visual conversations like Emojis, GIFs, BitMojis, Stickers, etc. And when brands use these fun visuals to reach their users it becomes Conversation Media Marketing.
Now once that image is in mind we can easily understand Conversation Media's natural descent into marketing and how it can cater to the problems marketers are facing in Social Media Marketing.
1 The Number - Although the increasing number of users on social media has made it difficult for brands to reach their audience when it comes to conversation media it has been a boom.
If you thought that 3.8 Billion users were a huge user base than you would be glad to know that there are 4.2 Billion users who text over the internet and more than 70 Billion texts are being sent each day.
2 Reaching the Right Audience - The problem with an increasing number of users on social media can't be replicated by Conversation Media as there are already more users who text than who post. But reaching the right audience is also an important part. With the use of Conversation Media Marketing, brands will be able to reach the right users at the right time by being a part of their daily conversation. This makes reaching potential consumers much easier for brands as compared to the tedious efforts of social media targeting.
Take an instance of two friends planning work out session.
Friend 1 - So what should we begin our workout with.
Friend 2 - Let's Go Running (Emoji of Nike Shoe)
3 It is consumer to consumer - Social media is like a very flexible broadcast channel whereas Conversation Media is just a Humble Text Message reaching conversation between two friends in a fun way. Conversation media makes use of the oldest trick in the marketing handbook that is the word of mouth.
Imagine a user talking with his/her hostel friends and someone shares a GIF like this to remind everyone else of the good old hostel days when they shared a bowl of instant noodles. Now imagine a brand of instant noodles placing their logo on this very gif.
2 It is not Annoying or Eerie But Fun - Our communications have evolved and to express ourselves better online we need Conversation Media. Unlike social media or the internet with Conversation Media Marketing Brands do not search and struggle to reach their users rather they just put your brand out there. After that, their users reach them and involve the brands in their conversations. This makes conversation media marketing fun for your users too. It is the natural nature of conversation media that removes the eerieness of brands that follow users around the internet.
3 We are the Meme Generation
Millennials and Genzies associate very well with the meme culture that has been going around for a while now. Movie releases nowadays start with Memes marketing. Production houses spend their time on making cool Memes for their upcoming movies.
Although social media is behind the viral nature of meme culture, people would rather share these memes on chats than
just post it online. This doesn't mean that they don't use social media for Memes. 38% of the youth find these memes on Meme accounts on social media but sharing them in personal chats is what they do often.
According to Our Talk the Talk survey 74% youngster send memes to make people smile or laugh—and 53% send them to react to something. The same survey also showed that 35% of youngsters share them with other people "who would get it" and 28% share them to express feelings they can't explain in words. Celebrities also try to reach their fan conversation using Memes.
Conversation Media Marketing helps with this too. Brands can reach their audience and become a part of their conversation in a way that is fun for the users.
Conversation Media Is Here To Stay
Conversation Media Marketing has been over the internet for quite some time now but it has not gained the momentum it needs to reach its potential.
Players like Snapchat have been adopted ways to engage their users into their app with the use of Animated Avatars that Millenials and GenZs now think of as their virtual identities.
These BitMojis were used by Steve Madden to promote a new line of Merchandise a couple of years back. Users could dress up their avatars with Steve Madden's designs. Ralph Lauren did the same and those designs are still available for use if you want to.
Genies, on the other hand, have taken Avatars to another level and renamed them as our digital clone. People love their avatars Genies understanding this has developed their avatar app that creates life-like personalised avatars. In 2017 they genies could re-enact news. In 2020 they are used as marketing tools by popular brands like Cheetos and GUCCI
Bobble AI has also done a similar thing with Sunfeast Yippee Noodles. Sunfeast Yippee Noodles in Collaboration with Bobble AI Keyboards recently launched Stickers and GIFs packs that users can share with ease. The best thing about a Keyboard App providing this kind of marketing is that these stickers are available to share on any platform of the users choice. From the family friends platforms like WhatsApp to the millennial hub that is Snapchat.
Players like Bobble AI have made it possible for brands to reach users even on texting platforms like WhatsApp. The best thing is brands do not have to put any additional efforts in these kinds of campaigns.
From Snacks to Fashions and from startups to celebrities conversation media is the new marketing platform for everyone who needs to reach their audience without being intrusive. So brands need to decide whether they want another broadcast channel like social media that is loosing its touch or a personal connect with their users.