Social media offer marketers fun and exciting new ways of reaching their customers. It is one of the hottest channels and is top of mind for most brand managers.
Is all of this attention misplaced?
The key benefit of social media, if you believe the hype, is the ability for people to share things across a platform. This is essentially digital word of mouth, a form of marketing that has repeatedly proven to offer an extremely attractive ROI. But a recent study by Keller Fay, a consultancy, may call into question this new found conventional wisdom. Roughly 7% of word of mouth is generated online, while a whopping 80% is still done face to face.
While social media is a great tool for enabling word of mouth, marketers cannot use this shiny new toy to replace a basic fundamental of brands – you need a great product. If your product is worth talking about, people will talk about it. And today, people still do much more talking in person than on Facebook or Twitter.
Social media will not magically create word of mouth for your brand. Your brand is going to have to do that by itself.
What do you think?