The way in which we customers consume media is rapidly changing. This much vaunted message is nothing new and most businesses are well aware of the radical shifts in how and where those customers want to consume and share information.
However although there are some notable exceptions, why are most companies still getting it wrong? Why are they still struggling with the concept that new media is not simply another medium, but a whole new set of cultural assumptions which are fundamentally changing how we think about information exchange.
It is to an unlikely source that we look for a shining example of how to really get a new media strategy right…….please step forward Lady Gaga.
“Brand Gaga” has shown that they really understand how to create that interactive relationship with the media consumer in order to build to drive sales.
Gaga understands where her audience is and uses channels such as Twitter and Facebook to build a digital dialogue that is consistent against the overall brand. There is no fragmentation of messaging that so many companies are guilty of. Gaga understands her brand image, associations and messaging and uses new media channels to reinforce and build upon them. Most importantly the content isn’t just tailored for the channel; it is specifically created for it. Her manager Troy Carter stated recently that her videos are made specifically for You Tube since this is where the audience wants to interact.
Everything is about the customer: she calls her fans ‘monsters’ makes her tweets fan-centric – discussing her appreciation of them. The customer is at the heart of most enterprises, and new-media should only serve to be an extension of this. The success of this strategy is easily shown by her 5m+ twitter followers, 10m+ Facebook fans and 1bn online video views.
While you may not think these principles of marketing an individual are easily translated to the corporate sphere, you only need look at Starbucks (the first brand to reach 10m Facebook fans) as to how they have been used to leverage new media channels. Starbucks strategy integrates a mix of different new media channels which create ongoing dialogue with their customers. Particularly powerful is My Starbucks Idea, a platform which allows customers to share their ideas for the company. As well as being able to view other customers’ suggestions, users of the site can view and rate other ideas and view progress of those which are selected to be implemented.
However underpinning this approach, which also includes a Twitter feed, YouTube channel, blog and Facebook page, is an understanding of where and how to interact with their customers and build engagement. Indeed it is interactivity which should be considered as the cornerstone of new media and the key concept around which any media strategy is constructed.