When marketers get ahold of a platform they ruin it…
- 1/3 of the average 30 minute TV show is commercials
- Radio became so cluttered with Ads that Sirius/XM emerged as an alternative
- Even Facebook is fighting back to prevent marketer overload by throttling reach
Traditionally in marketing, companies have justified reaching out to people, jumping into their online conversations in an attempt to connect with them, by calling it “brand building.” In most cases, traditional methods of marketing don’t foster a deep personal connection.
Brands have been left saying, “Let me PUSH myself in front of you!”
While there are best practices to build a loyal audience on social media, too many companies would rather skip ahead and try to go straight for the sale.
Thankfully with newer platforms emerging like Live Streaming apps, Periscope & Meerkat, they are encouraging users to say, “Hey everyone! I’m here, let’s talk.” In the past people talked about how social media was about engagement. NOW, Periscope and Meerkat are platforms that actually provide a personal connection, creating TRUE social engagement.
This is called “brand bonding” (a way to bond with your fans).
The best part of these newer platforms? It’s difficult to overexpose yourself at scale. Most brands have a few recognizable faces or characters. I feel the only authentic way for fans to truly connect with a brand, is for those “recognizable faces” to be on the live broadcast. This means marketing agencies can’t schedule a bunch of bland content on behalf of their clients.
Fewer messages means each message will hold a higher value to the viewer.
This is true especially when personal interactions takes place. I’ve noticed that the best results on platforms like Periscope & Meerkat come from answering audience questions, acknowledging them by name, and offering a glimpse of the behind the scenes in the broadcasters’ lives.
Both of these technologies are still early on in their development and getting involved early as a broadcaster offers up an early advantage in building an audience over people looking to jump on board later on.
Let’s go back and think of how television has developed…
Before cable, there were only a few channels and your show had a good chance of getting viewed. NOW there are hundreds of channels (not including Internet options like YouTube) and if you don’t have a huge advertising budget, it’ll be difficult to get noticed amongst the noise.
This is a very similar reflection in the current state of social media. Everyone feels like they “have to” participate on social media, Tweeting every 15 minutes… Facebook posts 10 times a day… or worse yet, create profiles that get no attention. In doing so, they just further add to the noise and struggle to compete for attention among MILLIONS of others with the same goals.
Being involved with your brand’s fan base personally through Periscope & Meerkat will give you the ability to strengthen awareness and consumer loyalty. It’s ok to be a little vulnerable with fans and show them a side they haven’t seen. Transparency goes a long way in today’s information age.
Early Innovations Using Periscope
One brand that I’ve been passionate about since I was 5 years old is World Wrestling Entertainment (WWE for short). Yes, I am an unapologetic fan of professional wrestling… err…. sports entertainment.
Being a billion dollar entertainment hub with multiple weekly shows reaching millions of obsessed fans, the WWE strives to be socially innovative (they even have their own netflix style network). Every chance they get, they’re encouraging fans to jump in on the conversation using hashtags on Twitter.
These past few weeks have even produced one cell phone wielding wrestler that goes by the name of Tyler Breeze, to actually Periscope his live entrance to the ring before a big match. I found this to be an extremely innovative way to bond with fans. This week, the WWE was Periscoping backstage antics during commercials… another great way to keep an audience’s attention during breaks.
I would say one bad direction they have taken recently was to use Periscope for cold, promotional purposes. Steve Austin made a rare appearance on the WWE and did a Periscope with someone else holding the phone, no personal interactions by Steve and after the promo was during, they stopped broadcasting.
I believe if they had spent 5 extra minutes engaging with fans, more people would have talked about the experience and thus spreading the promotion to more people. Opportunity. Missed.
Between the two, I like Periscope better. Meerkat is only live and the videos can no longer be viewed once you go off the air. Periscope videos are recorded live and then users have the ability to watch up to 24 hours later. This gives people who don’t waste their lives on social media, a chance to watch your message.
Both platforms are based off of Twitter audience (Periscope is even owned by Twitter). On Meerkat when people interact with you, the dialog can appear on Twitter as well. I feel this cross communication between the platforms is the only thing keeping Meerkat alive. Periscope is a few comparative features away from owning this game.
If I was a brand with a passionate fan base,
I would START BY PERISCOPING SOMETHING TODAY.
Figure out how the platform works and get some practice before it counts.
Don’t look at either of these platforms as a way to amass a huge following quickly. That’s the flawed strategy of other social media platforms that people try to implement. Instead, look at it as a way to build a stronger, more personal bond with your fans. Quality over Quantity.
FINALLY Social Media has Become Social!
P.S. Follow me on Periscope: derekWwyatt. I’m also on Meerkat under the same name, but will probably never use it.