Social Media, R.I.P. - Is What Comes Next What Came Before?

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Recently, branding author and speaker Jonathan Salem Baskin prompted a lengthy and spirited debate with an Advertising Age column alleging that social media experiments were at least partially to blame for the sales weaknesses at Pepsi and Burger King. We asked him to give us a deeper, exclusive insight into his perspective, with a particular emphasis on what might be the opportunities for social media. You'll find his conclusions not only provocative but applicable to your next conversation about your brand:

Consumers haven't rejected advertising as much as its dearth of meaningful information. They've gone to social media to find it by talking to one another about brands, not with brands. Brands have chased them there in hopes of influencing those conversations, using an approach to content that has been hotly contested since the 1960s. Our "content" creation is ever-more detached from the substance of their experience or specific requirements of their needs. Yet then we're surprised when our made-up metrics for those efforts don't connect to sales, or we explain them away.

Does the recent news suggest we need a new approach? What would social strategy look like if brands embraced the historic truisms of community, conversation, and engagement (hint: it would be very different from what we see now)? Would it involve a return of focus to business operations in order to substantiate brands? If we adopted the approach that has worked to forge meaningful relationships over the centuries, it would be a lot less entertaining and a lot more useful.

Baskin's latest book, Histories of Social Media, explores these themes in great detail and includes a workbook chapter with over 70 questions that businesses can use in workshop settings. His exclusive ANA webinar will allow you to engage on the book's main themes and challenge him (and one another) with your own thoughts and ideas.

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Start: Wednesday, April 27, 2011 at 1:00pm

End: Wednesday, April 27, 2011 at 2:00pm



Jonathan Salem Baskin
Histories of Social Media