It's hard to realize the passage of time. It seems like I was just teaching my first course on the Internet, The Souk and the Supermarket: Demystifying New Social Media, in the spring when the second is already underway, renamed "Effective Marketing in a Web 2.0 World", Business 87.
I have completely rewritten the course to focus on applications of new social tools and their use in marketing and communications and the cultural shift these new technologies imply.
The Internet changes the
rules of the game in how we communicate -- creating an entirely new way to
identify, reach, and engage with our markets. The shift to new media and new
ways of marketing is not just an economic one. It is a seismic cultural
and social shift as well. Web 2.0, the second generation of Internet
technologies and innovation, is reinventing our world.
We are moving from a model of marketing defined by mass marketing to one based on new social media.The distinction is profound -- and very hard to grasp. I see that as my class struggles to come to terms with the change as I am working to show them the distinction.
Mass marketing is a world defined by broadcasting messages to the largest possible swath of customers. It is a model based on selling, persuading, and convincing through carefully crafted messages. These messages are sent out to the world in the form of print ads, press releases, and direct mail. They reflect a top down, command and control, hierarchical model where the organization controls both the media and the message. Communications are one way.
By contrast new social media is based on an exchange of information between organizations and much more finely niched markets. It is a model based on listening, sharing, and collaboration. These new social media allow -- whether or not the company permits -- a multi-party conversation that may not even include the organization. There is no control, communications are entirely democratic, bottom up.
Not only do I firmly believe in the change and the incredible new powers new Internet technology unleashes, but I value engaging with others on the subject to see what we can learn. Stop by, if you would like to join us. Here is a link to the class online discussion and here is the link to the class blog.