This week’s post comes to you from our partners at Communicus.
Without further ado…

While the changing online media landscape has given advertisers countless new ways to connect with consumers, the successful online campaign will use each tool for a specific purpose. Like a musical ensemble group that has just expanded to a full orchestra, establishing deliberate roles for each individual contributor will insure that your overall multimedia campaign performs at the highest possible levels.

Communicus research confirms that the manner in which consumers engage with a brand’s Facebook page is completely different than how they’ve engaged with the more traditional types of online advertising. What used to be called the new media – online banner ads and videos/commercials – actually function much like the old media from an engagement and involvement standpoint. What is new is the role played by the truly new media – the Branded Social Media, where instead of the advertiser telling the brand story, consumers collaborate to create the brand story.

Branded Social Media can do several important things that are difficult to achieve with traditional advertising.

First, they can be a far more powerful tool in strengthening brand affinity – the extent to which the consumer feels connected to the brand. While traditional advertising struggles to build perceptions that this is a ‘cool brand’ and ‘for people like me’, branded social media excels at this. Additionally, based on their buzz-creating dynamic, these newer media venues can be an excellent vehicle for generating trial of new flavors, forms and line extensions.

However, it is clear that Branded Social Media still cannot generate the high levels of broad-based engagement that can be achieved by traditional media. In addition, these new media engagements are strongly driven by selective perception, meaning that they attract those who are already brand users and fans.

These findings suggest that a successful overall advertising plan can be built on the following foundation:
Our research suggests that, with a well-integrated campaign, this type of a model can optimize both the breath of overall brand communications and the powerful role of Branded Social Media in building the committed fan base for a brand. The result: improved ROI for the campaign, and a strengthened equity base to build on in the future. 

For more information, view the Communicus white paper:
‘The Roles of Traditional Advertising and Branded Social Media in a Successful Marketing Communications Campaign’