Social Media Communications
Marketing and Advertising industry
I’ve been described as a polymath, for I have always been different, difficult to categorise and knowledgeable on a number of fronts. I don’t fit into a niche, rather I tick many check boxes.
I’ve worked in Advertising and Marketing in Asia and Australia since 1987, and always dreamt of a broader way of communicating brand messages than just traditional media. Luckily technology and society have gained sufficient ground that I now have my ideal working environment.
Although considered a relatively new discipline in the advertising and marketing sphere, my online social networking & mobile marketing experience started prior to the dot com crash of 2000. And my work in Social Media was noted in the Australian Financial Review’s 2009 ‘Channeling Trendsetters’ article.
As both a natural Maven and a Connector, in 2000 I first devised intranet forums and online staff resources for a number of high profile multinational companies including Kraft and HP. That same year, teaming with Cadbury, Schweppes, Streets & Uncle Bens Australia, I pioneered the use of mobile marketing within their sales forces and in their channel marketing campaigns, carrying this through into promotions and guerilla marketing.
In the following year I worked on a music sharing platform with which employers could reward staff loyalty, a concept that Apple later developed into iTunes. Since then, I have devised a number of cross platform digital promotions utilising social networking as the key driver and have devised a basic model for branded social networking platforms. In the last two years my projects have ranged from small hospitality based enterprises to retail giants such as Myer.
As one of the few Social Media Planners with a strong basis in advertising and marketing strategy, I hold a unique position amongst the many PR and solely Digital based Planners in the field. In my case, the foundation of any plan lies in understanding core brand values, the target market – how they use media – and the most effective way to meet brand objectives via online influencers.
The differential is that I derive my understanding of the medium by being actively involved in multiple online communities. To my favour, it allows me to understand the unwritten protocols of social networking implicitly and as a consequence I have been sought out to correct emerging ambassador programs that have neglected to fully understand the rules of the discipline.
I write and contribute to five non marketing blogs. I personally run and moderate a community forum, plus I’m actively involved in popular social media platforms using multiple non marketing personas. This knowledge is vital in determining governance and establishing the correct language for a brand’s online dialogue.
My strength in Word of Mouth Marketing comes of knowing exactly what bloggers want – and what they will reject - from advertisers. My active involvement with various blogging communities, via multiple social networks goes beyond merely monitoring the space, with personal access to blogging and micro-blogging influencers in a number of categories of interest to FMCG, Retail and Service Marketers in Australia.
To be an effective Social Media Marketer one needs to dwell in the online space. It is not a discipline that can be managed merely on attending a workshop, nor can it be successful without creative thought and innovation.
This is a sphere driven by passion, word of mouth, shared interests and story telling. At the heart of it is personal connection.
For me, Social Media presents an opportunity for brands to build loyalty and to use public opinion to assist in crafting a better product offering, minus the braggadocio that Millenials find so distasteful. And the most delightful thing is that it requires us to break the rules of PR, advertising and marketing, to think well beyond the realms of anything that has come before.
So hang on and enjoy the ride.