The internet with its video, photos and conversation is an echo chamber full of sound and fury signifying … what?
According to a thought provoking article by Louis D. Lo Praeste (@big_thought), commentator and strategist, the internet is so jammed with social media spam that investing in programmatic distribution of wall-paper content will not sell a bean, but alienate potential customers seeking a return on relationship.
His thesis is that marketing investment in social media will fall away as brands realise it doesn’t sell product.
For all the hype about social media, it seems that content made for these greedy channels has become bland drivel driven by algorithms rather than proper strategic connections with consumers.
And what’s more the seeming rush into digital by marketers proves nothing as overall marketing budgets continue to decline.
But surely it has ever been thus, only the means of distributing content has changed on a massive scale.
There has always been throw-away content in marketing; junk mail, fly posting, excess print inventory, classified ads, unsolicited sales calls. This has just expanded to fill a new and infinite space called the internet.
Sure, social media has changed our relationship to marketing content somewhat; as Louis’ figures prove we now see it as a form of disinterested entertainment rather than seeking it for information or even believing much of it.
But that’s more to do with the standard of content and the sheer amount of it washing around us as we surf the web.
As for marketing spend; it’s stretched so tightly because it’s being used to try to cover every base, which is impossible. Unless a brand’s marketers are super human, there’s no way they can service all the different channels. For many it’s a case of taking a breather to work out what comes next.
We’re still at the beginning of the communications revolution and figuring ways of harnessing the power of global conversation to persuade, cajole and demonstrate our stories.
As content producers we have to believe that quality, creativity, connection and strategy will cut through the noise to give our clients a clear voice.