According to the new Razorfish 2008 Consumer Experience Report consumer’s are adopting new technologies faster than industry pundits would have us believe but what struck a chord with me was their their thoughts about the distribution of content
“Distribution must evolve into a science, as reaching consumers in a fragmented, personalized environment Will become increasingly complex. ... “.
How do companies best prepare themselves in such a period of change and what content distribution model have you got in place with your brand?
Certainly the rapid rate of change is throwing up more questions then answers –just look at the ‘application economy’ we are now living in- According to Adonomics.com, in August 2008, there were 782,039,975 installs across 34,676 apps on Facebook, with over 200,000 developers currently evaluating the platform. According to Goldman Sachs 20 million applications will be downloaded from the new applications store in iTunes by the end of 2008.
Whilst the stats are mindboggling is it just a case of your brand engaging in the social media space by developing applications to extend your presence or perhaps adopting a more measured approach to make sure your messaging is consistent across these external properties?
“Most organizations are moving toward an external presence that consists of multiple sites, microsites, banners, blogs—you name it. Anything that gets "launched" ends up in the digital ether and is either maintained or neglected. Many of these properties interconnect and depend on one another. Some come and go and some just litter the Web”
I therefore advocate that every brand company should have an ‘online engagement cycle ’ (see below figure developed by Network Communications) to help pioneer the new advantages that can be gained from social media.
Whilst the rate of change has not percolated down to Australia yet it is beginning to take shape and certainly companies at the very least should be looking at options in the space by monitoring by what is being said online about their brand.
In the meantime it is up to those companies and blogger who are actively engaged in the space to help, encourage ,be constructive and applaud efforts where appropriate. Unfortunately right now it seems easier to jump on a brand’s back because of the small amount of activity in the space and engender a ‘climate of fear’ where companies might be afraid to experiment for fear of retribution from the blogosphere. Agree or disagree?