Social media is an amazing vehicle, not just for personal networking but also to push your business realizations to the next level. According to statistics that I just made up for this article (hey at least I am honest), 99.9% of the old-school marketers believe in four P’s of marketing. They will passionately show off their marketing intelligence by telling you how Product, Price, Place and Promotion are the supreme leaders of the essential marketing mix. To my marketer friends and foes I say, “4 Ps are simply outdated and not enough”. There is a fifth “P” and it stands for “People”. This fifth P serves as the gas for the vehicle we refer to as Social Media Marketing.
Marketing is not about making something sound fancy and look great by constantly throwing money at it. Marketing is about sharing a story and making it engaging and inspiring and impactful. People bring that reality to marketing. Wondering how? Let me share a quick story.
This morning I sat down to write an article about how the dynamics of marketing have shifted in the last two decades from “push” to “pull”. The premise of my research was analyzing marketing trends of the past and present and how up until a decade ago businesses and marketers were pushing their messages via every channel they could think of and consumers simply absorbed and took the abuse. As I began to write and dive deeper into this research, my phone rang and I lost my train of thought. In other words it was a pretty idiotic case of writer’s block. An hour went by with no substantial thoughts on the subject. I began to Google my way around writers block by searching on the very topic. After searching and reading some random posts I landed on the following article on 43folders.com, “Hack Your Way Out of Writer’s Block”, and finally gave up on my search.
Umm, some good suggestions there but come on, really? Suggestions like “Talk to a monkey” or “Write Crap” didn’t help me establish much of an alliance with this blogger. I was disappointed so I turned to social media God Facebook and updated my Facebook status to “Writers Block” and decided to wrap up for the hour. As I was about to leave, I noticed a new message in my inbox. It read:
“Saw you have writer's block. You can read my wall if it'll help you draw inspiration. Some poetic minds have got together there. I'm sure the block will pass and you'll be awesome. And then if you have something beautiful to write, feel free to add it to my wall. Have a nice day. :)”
This email came from a total stranger who reached out to me, offered help, was nice, inspirational and made a poignant connection. Upon clicking on her email and then her picture I learned a few interesting things about her. Her name is Brintha Gardner. She is a beauty queen of sorts (Mrs. India 2009), http://www.brinthagardner.com/home.html and she is genuinely supportive of total strangers.
This is the fifth “P” of marketing at it’s best. People reaching out to others to engage, to support, to drive, to inspire to contribute to a community in whatever way they can. Imagine if as a business you were using your social media vehicle to do just that. As you ponder that thought, I am interesting in listening to your story and how do you see this fifth P of marketing contributing to your success.