Tuesday, March 31, 2009

Advertisers and Ad Agencies: It's time to expand your Social Network(ing)

The advertising industry is experiencing a crisis -- not only because of shrinking marketing budgets, not only because advertisers are looking for ways to bypass the ad agencies and going directly to other vendors and suppliers, but more because the consumer is taking control. Today's consumer do not want to be talked to. They want to participate and socialize. People are not glued to their TV sets anymore. Yes, they're could still be on their couches with the TV or radio on, but they're on their mobile phones and computers at the same time.

Being in the advertising industry, I've seen too many good people lose their market value because they've refused to change their ways. They've stopped learning and they're stuck with what they know. The few who continuously attempt to redefine themselves are the ones who get ahead and are prepared for the challenges of today and tomorrow.

Oh, yes, most of us are already on Friendster and Facebook. And most of us use Yahoo Messenger, search on Google and Yahoo, and have read at least a blog entry or two. But do we really understand why and how people use these digital tools? Do we really understand what it will take for our brands to participate in the online space?

What comes to mind when our clients tell us that we want to get into digital or the internet? How many times do we get creative initiatives that are mere banner-ad or rich-media executions? How many times have clients asked us to create a Facebook fan page or start spamming our personal social networks to get a campaign go "viral" -- and we go ahead and agree with them? Do we really understand online social networks as marketing professionals?

While Plurking and reading blogs, I stumbled upon this blog that was an invitation to the 2nd Social Networking & E-Business Conference 2009. It will be held very soon -- April 23 & 24 at the Hotel Intercontinental in Makati. 

Organizers Fiera de Manila Inc. and DigitalFilipino.com writes about the conference:
Express yourself, share your interest, post your photos, share your music, connect with friends, make new connections, and exchange insights --- this is now the growing trend of communications and engagement with your customers.

The phenomenon of online social networks has created real-life and business relationships amongst advertisers, users and consumers of today's digital marketplaces. The growth and popularity of social networks is changing the landscape of marketing and e-Business.

Gain insights on how to maximize the use of social networks. Learn from various case studies. Learn from various Experts sharing their unique perspectives on the phenomenon of social networks.

The Social Networking and e-Business Conference 2009 is an event geared towards companies and digital marketing/advertising professionals who are interested to use social networks for advertising/marketing their products and services. It is for dynamic companies, start-ups, and upcoming players who would like to leverage on current technologies to communicate and sell their products/services in the cyber world; and, gain knowledge as to how this industry is working and evolving.
I came across Ms Jannet Toral on Plurk and figured, if I found her online, then she probably knows much more about this space than most advertising gurus who don't even have a blog. Aside from her, Friendster, Asia Pay, Smart, Level Up!, ABS-CBN Interactive, and Yahoo! will be speaking. And there are even others from outfits I've never heard of but that probably means I should know who they are.

These are the people I need to be having conversations with. These people I want to be within my social network. These are the people who I can learn from about Social Network marketing.

I want to be ready for today's marketing challenges. I want to be prepared for what's next. I want to be part of the Social Networking and e-Business Conference 2009.

See you there? Click here for the conference's registration form.

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