In the mainstream, people are no longer excited just to be using social media. Users are becoming sophisticated about how they allow themselves to be interrupted by notifications and how they filter people and content based on their interests. This inevitability has implications for business and presents challenges especially for businesses who have been slow to embrace it.
The Fad is Over
The fad phase is over. That doesn't mean it is going away, it means online social discourse is the norm. As a society, we're not going back to relying solely on traditional media and the trends toward social will continue in that direction. But businesses can't count on just being there to ensure success in reaching their communities.
The novelty of making a video, posting a tweet, or writing a blog isn't enough for your audience anymore.
In the same way, just creating an event on Facebook or Google+ and sharing it is not enough to get people's attention anymore. Social media has become overwhelmed by events, especially on Facebook, so that it can be difficult to stand out or for people to even notice your event before the date arrives.
Tenets of Advertising Are Back
Advertising has been about getting noticed and remembered as well as having a clear call to action that appeals to your target market. Social media had a short run that could shortcut those first two requirements simply because it was on a novel platform with an attentive audience. Since social media has been mainstream for a few years now and the field crowded, the novelty is fading and getting attention online is becoming increasingly competitive.
Businesses that are not truly social will never be heard. Posting brand messages like an advertisement is not social and won't give you the engagement you're looking for. Getting to know the people in your community on a personal level is the only way to make the social channel work.
Unless a business can compel people to share its content because of its relevance to their lives, its importance to their friends, and the humanity of its approach, media creation will be a wasted investment.
The two principal measures of whether or not a piece of media content will be shared socially is 1. is it informative? and 2. Is it sharable? Without a yes to those two measures, your content is going nowhere.
Mature With Your Community
Businesses can buy media but they can't buy social. There is a learning curve that social media imposes that takes time and forces a company to really consider who they are and who they serve. Get started on the learning curve and know that there is no solution that doesn't involve you and your team using social media on a personal level.
How else can you be "social"?