I’ll take my PR with a side of hilarity and bacon please.
Here’s a little excerpt from Humor Can Create Engagements by Aaron Perult at Forbes.com
Mistakenly, most PR execs are convinced the world lives and dies on the pages of media such as The Wall Street Journal, and lean toward using speakisms such as “strategic,” “results-oriented,” and “synergies,” words that have little meaning to actual human beings.
As a result, the companies and brands represented by these boredom ambassadors become further detached from consumers. They lose opportunities to endear themselves to audiences new and old, and instead reaffirm the stigma that they are managed by out-of-touch corporate drones just looking to turn a buck.
Consumers are, in fact, willing to engage with companies and brands in today’s online social forums. The trick is that people are looking for authentic, self-deprecating voices willing to not take themselves too seriously. Consider whether the PR staff for Hormel’s bacon brands could better spend their time creating an online, regional and national event vehicle like the World Bacon Games–where they hand out medals made of delicious bacon–as opposed to pleading with food reporters to write glowing reviews about their products. Since there are hundreds of bacon enthusiast websites and blogs online, and statistics such as between June 2008 and June 2009 there were more Web searches for “bacon” than “Barack Obama,” that would be a good bet, yes.
Chris Abraham, the big boss at Abraham Harrison where I am interning this semester, sent me this article to blog about on Marketing Conversation. Enjoy!
Alright maybe not THAT obvious to executives still marveling at the technology of the fax machine. But it’s hard for me as a student of the Abraham Harrison school of social media to understand that some businesses still have not embraced the potential of a solid social media strategy – including an interactive Facebook page. Fact is, Abraham Harrison has understood for a while now that individuals trust the recommendations of people in their social networks when it comes to spending their pay checks, and Facebook makes it very easy to publicize one’s brand affinity and share these positive opinions with others. Retailers who are actively involved in marketing their products and services using Facebook may have a distinct advantage over competitors in terms of product recommendations.
According to a report released by market research company Morpace, 68% of consumers say that a positive referral from a Facebook friend makes them more likely to buy a certain product or visit a certain retailer. Take out the word “Facebook” from that sentence and we’ve got old news; of course positive referrals make a difference in purchasing behavior. But what is noteworthy about Facebook’s role in all of this is how individuals are now using their public affiliation with certain corporate brands via their profiles to build up their own personal brands (while still touting the benefits of Product X). The Morpace report states that the primary reason individuals join a Fan Page is to “let my friends know what products I support.” Additionally, a study of over 1500 consumers by market research firm Chadwick Martin Bailey and iModerate Research Technologies found that 60% of Facebook fans and 79% of Twitter followers are more likely to recommend certain brands since becoming a fan or follower.
Individuals are now co-producers of brands’ messages in terms of their recommendations and given the evidence from these studies, if your business is not on Facebook you’re missing out on the opportunity for some earned word-of-mouth marketing and you risk being considered irrelevant in today’s marketplace.