Social media have made brands less significant

screenshot_71Via HBR: As a central feature of their digital strategy, companies made huge bets on what is often called branded content. The thinking went like this: Social media would allow your company to leapfrog traditional media and forge relationships directly with customers. If you told them great stories and connected with them in real time, your brand would become a hub for a community of consumers.[inlinetweet prefix=”” tweeter=”” suffix=”null”] Businesses have invested billions pursuing this vision. Yet few brands have generated meaningful consumer interest online. [/inlinetweet]In fact, social media seems to have made brands less significant. What has gone wrong?

[inlinetweet prefix=”null” tweeter=”null” suffix=”null”]While companies have put their faith in branded content for the past decade, brute empirical evidence is now forcing them to reconsider.[/inlinetweet]

[inlinetweet prefix=”null” tweeter=”null” suffix=”null”]In YouTube or Instagram rankings of channels by number of subscribers, corporate brands barely appear.[/inlinetweet] Only three have cracked the YouTube Top 500. Instead you’ll find entertainers you’ve never heard of, appearing as if from nowhere.

big-calvin

Now my personal opinion is that the consumers don’t have the time to read websites they bookmarked and just don’t have the time for the myth of content marketing.  As a consultant I have seen clients spend a lot of money on content only to struggle to show an ROI with poor online metrics.

The belief that social media marketing is a great way to reach consumers is crashing to earth with a loud thump.  The self appointed experts, who used social media to sell books, are scrambling to convince marketers that social media is still relevant.  It’s relevant only as a listening forum to answer customers and prospects and as just another media property for online ads.

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Clearly it’s time for marketers to do something they haven’t done in a long while…THINK.