you say social media, I say…

Here’s another download from last week’s Digital Symposium which I spoke at and attended (see express vs. operationalize for a synopsis of my talk) — this is from Mike Moran‘s presentation.

Mike is the author of Do It Wrong Quickly:  How the Web Changes the Old Marketing Rules.  He’s also a former IBM engineer turned Internet marketing guru, which means he has a great perspective on all the stuff trips up marketers — like how to talk about new Internet technologies in a way that your CEO, CFO, head of R&D, etc. are going to understand.

One of the things he covered in his presentation was a categorization framework for social media — buckets that help organize and clarify different social media technologies.  Here are the 4 categories he discussed along with explanations and commentary from him (and me):

1.  content-based — e.g., blogs, webcasts, YouTube, etc. — any social media in which the point is the content (creating and sharing it) — for companies, doing content-based social media is essentially PR on the web and the most basic approach

2.  personality-based — e.g., FaceBook, LinkedIn, etc. — commonly referred to as social networking sites, this kind of social media is for connecting with others — companies might engage with personality-based sites by developing profiles for their brand characters or their brands themselves, targeting market segments (particularly useful for B2B), and/or creating groups or sub-networks to connect brand stakeholders

3.  interest-based — e.g., Yahoo! Groups, Google Groups, etc. — these are communities, message boards, and forums formed around specific topics — like personality-based sites, this type of social media may be used for targeting a specific market segment — it also seems like a great research source

4.  fantasy-based — e.g., Webkinz World, Second Life, etc.  — fantasy-based social media are virtual worlds in which people adopt personas and interact with each other — more and more brands are setting up their own custom Second Lifes in order to facilitate deeper customer engagement with the brand

Perhaps the next time you try to explain a new marketing program to your corporate execs you can use this framework to help them understand the growing and ever-changing landscape of social media.  Thanks, Mike!

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  • Thanks for the shout-out, Denise. I hope people don’t quickly pass over the link you gave for your own talk. Too many people are talking about concepts only–unless you make them operational you don’t get any value out of it. As you know, the actions are the hard parts, so people might rather talk than do stuff. Your presentation helps people walk the talk.