11 May 2009 7 Comments

Is your brand social?

Author: yinkaolaito

Yinka Olaito is happy,excited and passionate Communication specialist, Social Media expert, Trainer and speaker. Yinka Olaito helps brands(Profits and Non-profits)with effective communication and positioning for premium service delivery and returns. Yinka Olaito also has special interest in Development Communication and has consulted for noted UN Agencies. Yinka Olaito is the CCO of Michael Sage Consulting(Communication/digital media), African Child Education Right Initiatives(NGO) and Content Director, Africa Development Talk( online Platform for discussion on Policy, Governance, development across Africa)


barnd-and-social-mediabrand-social-media-21Today there is no more hidden place. You are either here or there. No neutrality. Neutrality may means your brand is staying at the middle of the road. No one needs to tell you that that is the most dangerous place to stay for safety. Whether your brand appreciates it or not the conversation is on. The ignorance today especially in our clime is that our people are not there on the net yet. But I bet it the way it will go for many brands may be the like the case of an applicant who trusted himself to wake up long before the day break for the interview and refused to set alarm clock in case he overslept. This special day the his body failed and he woke up at 8.00am to start a journey of one hour in a metropolitan city for an appointment at 8.30am.

There is no reasonable excuse today because we now have social media expert who had become dedicated to this over the years and can help brand to become social, participate in the conversation, become social and take advantage of the involvement. The problem with most managers, drivers of brands today is that many still want to remain secretive, dishonest. Many still run in the old energy of scarcity, egocentric, centralized control and taking customers for granted. In a recent presentation by Chris Heur, he asserted “social media is not just a thing to do; it is a way to be”. Chris went on to say that social media economy demands that we take action because social media is a verb and not a noun. Asocial media therefore believe in connection, networking, strong community and engaged every brand’s tribe to embrace such. Have you noticed a solo person always suffer what he should not suffer? An African adage also affirms “because snakes do not move in groups make it easier for a single person to kill them easily”.

The ability of a brand to do well in building strong community, build strong interactions among the brand village community will do well than when they remain secretive as well as maintain high handed posture.

Not joining the conversation and building a community today is a sign of “brand euthanasia”. Market today as we know is no longer located in a place. The brand may become a local champion if all efforts are focused on the local environment. The brand may not draw international investors to itself as they may not be known beyond its locality. I love the way Chris put it “Market is now people, community”. If this is true and a brand remains in the old order of manipulations, anti-social, will such brand still be relevant in next five years? Train everyone to listen, engage in conversation, let them relate with your community, get a community leader or consultant if you need one and go ahead and become a social brand. You may be doing the brand greater havock if the brand is deliberately programmed to be anti-social in this crunch and recession.

I ask again, is your brand social?

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