The destination is the vehicle.


Many people forget that their website or brand or company page is not about the destination.  Presenting beautiful and highly functional brand pages can certainly be valuable, but expecting people to visit the page (often) is foolish.  Since the invention of the web browser, much focus has been put on the company website, or better yet… the Facebook page. Consumer behavior and technology have reduced the need to repeatedly visit a company’s website or brand page regardless of whether it is on Twitter, Facebook, or another social platform.  Users now expect to have information delivered to them.

What began as a destination-based medium, marketers invested heavily in web pages and then paid enormous amounts of money to drive traffic to those sites.  The value of a web presence was initially focused on traffic and then measured in much the same way brick and mortar retail was.  The reality is that the web is just as much if not more of a distribution-based medium than destination-based.  Updates and other forms of posted or shared content can be distributed through feeds and social media platforms, which is how audiences are leveraging the technology, especially when it comes to mobile.

The real value of following a company as a consumer is to get updates and stay connected.  As a consumer I need to know what the latest and most relevant news is.  That has value to me, and the more value I get from a brand, the better chance I have of engaging and supporting that brand.

Brands that focus on value creation will not only build an owned audience, they will focus on content that resonates with that audience.  Content calendars will be driven by audience interests, not corporate messaging.  Companies will make conscious efforts to produce content that is worth sharing, and they will closely monitor the value of the content they publish.  Content marketing scorecards and dashboards will highlight in real-time consumer reactions that go well beyond site traffic or click thru rates.

While your web site and brand pages are important and should represent your brand, the most value will come from the ability to deliver relevant, meaningful content to your audience as efficiently as possible.  Do you want to go to a company’s Twitter page more than once?  Twitter is for following brands, not visiting them.

The destination has become the vehicle.

French Kissing Your Mom and other Social Media Thoughts

I laugh.  So many brands chasing the social media followers to claim a victory of size in a game measured by something else.  People often say you should move out here – you get a lot more house for the money.  I don’t want more house for the money – I want more neighborhood for the money.  Similarly, having the largest group of followers is not the objective.  The objective is to take care of your customers.  One way is providing them connection points that suit their lifestyle.  Another is treating them the way they deserve to be treated.  If you walked into your high school reunion, would you treat your whole class the same way or would you seek out the people that mean more to you so you could engage in meaningful conversation with them?  The idea that a brand would invest in building a large audience of followers and treat them all equally significantly misses the most basic laws of relationships – they are not all created equally.  You might french kiss your girlfriend, but would you french kiss your mom????