Social isn’t digital and isn’t marketing

What sort of headline is that? Good question! The point I want to make is that social media isn’t the only aspect of digital marketing and digital marketing isn’t replacing marketing. It is all marketing!

This weekend I’ve spent some indulgent time at the Goodwood Festival of Speed and, despite its very petrol-head nature, I’m pleased to report that the event has also provided me with material for this blog.

There seems to be so much focus on social media marketing and, clearly, it is an important part of the communications mix and must be included in any marketing plan. However, it is not the only tool available to the savvy marketer and indeed, the skill is in knowing which tool to use in which situation to deliver the best results.

The two examples which spring to mind from this weekend’s event demonstrate the skill of choosing the right marketing tool. Surrounded by many car marques vying for our attention, the most innovative car brand marketing for me was VW’s use of augmented reality and social media – a marketing buzz word combo! Pretend you’re really at a rally and send pictures, via Facebook or email, to your friends with a mud-splattered face! Well I did and what did it cost? Nothing, it was all free in exchange for access to my Facebook profile of course. It seemed like a reasonable price to pay and my Facebook friends thought the video of me being circled by an F1 rally driver’s donut (petrol-heads will understand the term) was also a hoot – a fabulous use of augmented reality, take a look if you’d like to (sorry I didn’t dress for the occasion!).

Okay, so that was a clever use of social media but let’s not forget the traditional sampling marketing tool which was delivered so effectively at the same place, to the same audience but for a different product. The rally car experience by VW was a memorable experience but equally on a hot day a chilled piece of Davidstow cheese, offered with a smile, was welcomed by me and many others. Two flavours – to compare and contrast, a recipe card and a 50 pence voucher off my next purchase; not an example of social media but presumably trackable, as long as the correct measurement data is in place, and a good use of promotional marketing.

Remember the depth of the tool box available to marketers and choose appropriately. Social media is now in the mix and can add tremendous value, yet a thought process which applies an integrated approach and remembers some of the more traditional tactics can also deliver results. If you are planning a promotional campaign for an event and would like to discuss this with me then do please get in touch.

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