Social Media Marketing - A Road Less Traveled

06/30/2008

River_ansel_adams Last week Mei-Li Thomas reminded me that social media marketing is a journey that has many twists and turns. Traveling paths that have yet to be explored can be an exciting adventure. What's around the river's bend can also be uncertain and at times a bit scary.

Is it any wonder that brand managers quiver at the thought of quickly making sense of concepts that are untried and unpredictable?  From pay per post to character blogs to how to measure to ROI to blogger relations from micro blogging to vlogs to RSS and social networking .. this industry is spinning as fast as people can imagine how to incorporate the next new idea into a marketing strategy that continues and supports The Conversation. But there's more .. the benefits that build relationships across miles and cultures.

As my friend CK said in her inspiring speech at Blogger Social this spring -

The lesson that social media has taught me? Now that we're all connected and empowered to easily share our views and viewpoints, the world isn't getting flatter...it's getting smaller.

In a career or in a life less traveled, Mei-Li believes there are people, she calls Connectors, who help you navigate "because we know life isn't a straight shot." In her young career social media has helped her find several people. Last week she made my world a little smaller and a little bigger by honoring me as one of her Connectors. As part of her Road Map Series Mei-Li' asked me a few simple but thought provoking questions. So with Mei-Li's permission the tables are turned today. Following are snips from our interview that Mei-Li conducted with me  

Mei-Li Thomas: What have been your Road Maps to get you to the point you have now reached in your career?

Toby/Diva Marketing: My journey, as yours also seems, was not a straight line. I followed the scenic route instead of taking the expressway or relying on GSP. Sometimes that resulted in getting lost and perhaps a longer trRoad_less_traveledip. However, the adventure has been quite different than if I had traveled with a download of a Google map.

The first stop on a road map can be the most critical to any journey The first stop on my road map would have to be my dad, Lou Bloomberg. "Mr. B" as he was fondly called was smart, kind, wise and wonderful. His vision of marketing was eons beyond the realities of the industry when he started his research business in the ''60's. He never told me once that I couldn't do anything I wanted, even when my travels led to destinations that seemed foreign to him. Most important .. when you take the road less traveled it's nice to have someone to talk to help make sense of it all. He was that person for me.

Mei-Li Thomas: What's your advice to your reader who want to best utilize your blog who has yet to have a career in Marketing/PR/Consulting?

Toby/Diva Marketing: Excellent question. I never imagined that Diva Marketing would be used that way. It is a humbling thought. Thinking about your first question, perhaps Diva Marketing is part of the scenic route that adds fun and encourages your curiosity about Marketing/PR/Consulting and of course social media marketing. Use Diva Marketing as a resource -- there are lots of interviews and lessons learned from talented people including authors from social media to PR, branding and business in general. Categories and search will help you find specific topics of interest.

The heart of social media to me is the "social .. building relationships that encouraging learning from each other and together. That might be friend-to-friend or customer-to-brand manager.

Mei-Li Thomas: Any Traveling Music? Any songs or videos that helped push you along your journey?

Toby/Diva Marketing: Taking the road less traveled once more .. musicals. Why? They tell stories about people and the songs frequently touch my heart and inspire me. I've written posts and even built presentations incorporating the lessons from musicals. This post was based on Hairspray's "Can't Stop The Beat" song - You can't stop an avalanche as it races down the hill You can try to stop the seasons, girl, but you know you never will.  Does that not say social media marketing to you?

Also when you're driving down the road in your pink Cadillac (or PC pink diva Hybrid auto), hair blowing in the wind, songs from musicals are such fun to sing along to especially when you have a friend traveling with you!

We all need a friend or 2 or 3 or 4 to travel this road with .. and if we're very lucky we'll find kindred spirits along the way. Why we may even find them through social media .. I've found several!

Drop by No Fear Just D.I.V.A. for the complete interview and some smart posts.

The social media marketing road less traveled is not a straight line.I'd love to hear about your stops along the way.

Graphic complements of The Road Less Taken

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Comments

Toby,

I've been on that road since I turned 10, when I learned that busy highways serve only to slow us down and to keep us locked into average. Great interview.

Posted by: Lewis Green on Jul 1, 2008 10:54:05 AM

It is nice to see you on the receiving end of an interview for a change ;)

Posted by: Gavin Heaton on Jul 1, 2008 7:32:45 PM

Toby, for me it's not a road less traveled as much as it is a new frontier. Today, there is no such thing as a new 'physical' frontier when the world was full of pioneers conquering the west, Columbus sailing the seas, (excluding space) so we have created new cyber-frontiers, unknown digitized territories we can travel to and through and indulge our creativity.

That's how I see social media my new frontier.

Posted by: Susan Cartier Liebel on Jul 1, 2008 9:04:34 PM

Toby, whether be it "marketing" or any thing else, we all need to remember one thing that there are many aspects to look at things, not just one.

Posted by: Catalog Rep on Jul 2, 2008 12:01:14 PM

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