Time for a confession. Even though I rarely post about media issues on this blog, the truth is, I’m fascinated by media issues in the social age. Keeping up with media news/trends is a growing passion of mine, especially when it comes to PESO issues (media that’s: Paid, Earned, Shared, Owned). I ran across a superb article in VentureBeat that talks about brands failing to understand social media, especially the “social conversation” aspect. I also like that it quotes Ogilvy.
Here’s the Ogilvy quote about PESO:
“Going forward, they’ll [brands] need to use ‘paid’ to fuel ‘earned,’ but that doesn’t make the earned any less valuable.”
I agree with Ogilvy. Let me just add: One common instance where using paid media to to fuel earned media is stupid and wasteful is if a brand or agency implements a paid campaign to pay crappy ‘bloggers’ – even if they’re riff raff – in a flaccid, visible-to-everyone way.
Such a campaign is sometimes foolishly launched without good data, or launched with data that’s misread. (Another confession: Data is a growing interest of mine)
Anyway, the VentureBeat article and the embeded SlideShare from Ogilvy focuses mainly on diminishing organic reach on Facebook, and the outlook is generally grim. However, Harry Hawk (@hhawk) has a few very interesting/unique insights into this, specifically that not everything is as it seems. You’ll need to reach out to him to hear his take. It’s based on research, not opinion.
(I’m in no way indicting VB, Ogilvy, or anyone nor am I insinuating anything. As I said earlier, I agree with Ogilvy and I love VB’s report. I’m simply reassuring you that Harry Hawk’s take is valid and very interesting)
What Harry says can’t be summed up in 3 sentences, but I’ll give you a preview: According to Harry’s findings, some industries are shockingly actually doing better (yes, better) after the FB newsfeed algo changes because some savvy brands are boosting posts that are “already doing well” instead of trying to boost underperforming posts. Intrigued? Yeah, so was I.
As I said, it’s a little too deep to go into detail here, so do contact Harry. The final takeaway I’d like you to take away is this: Even on the brand side with all the inherent complexities of PESO issues, or algo changes imposed by sites, etc., there are ways to do social in a “stupid and wasteful” way, and there are ways to do it in a smart way, or least not be stupid in the way you do things. I’m not saying I’m a SM or PESO expert, although some people look to me for advice and inspiration. But if I can humblebrag for a minute, I just wanna point out that I didn’t really get active on social media til around early 2013 and I feel I’m making strides. As recently as April 2012 I wasn’t on social media at all (not even Facebook) and even felt it had no place in my life. Back then, I wasn’t even clear on what PESO is – Now I’m all over it, going to PESO/media conferences and stuff. So there’s my humblebrag. If I carry on, it won’t be humble anymore. 😀