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Wednesday, October 26, 2011

More Social, than Media: Conoco's TextFree Drivers

Think marketing, think of a conversation either you participated in, or overheard. Think marketing; what comes to mind? blah, blah, blah...Social Media, blah, blah, blah.

Social media is the new cool kid in the marketing rhelm, and it is quickly becoming an axiom of must do's for business and marketers everywhere. It is the clutter, we clump to. Social media, is an oddity and a resource we have yet to fully understand.

When you think social media, the first thoughts to mind are probably that of: Facebook, twitter, youtube, linkedin, etc. The term  "social media" ( a concept confused by the conjunction of social and media) it easy to assume that social media is simply the social sites we use. In truth social media has little to do with the so called social websites. Social media is so much more than just a cyber presence. Social media is all around us, every day, and every night. Social media is the presence of brands, and/or products in our tangible world. 

Social media refers to how we see a brand based on their commitment to the community, and, or cause. Social media, emphasizes the social mindset of marketing, and tries to create an empathetic persona for a brand.

 A perfect example of social media done well is: "Tide's Loads of Hope," a response to Hurricane Katrina. Tide created a portable washing service to help those affected by the disaster. When you think about it, clean laundry was probably only a minor concern to those living through Katrina, however the brands response received huge amounts of social praise. Tide helped the community while, profiting through the gain, of huge amounts, of free advertising. Tide gained more advertising benefits and brand recognition through Loads of Hope, a social campaign than it could have ever paid for. 

Social media, is an active tool which allows for brands to become more personal. Social media gives a brand a platform to communicate and engage in the community.

Sometimes, slash all the time, I am way to disorganized and, or  simply just over it; to mess around in my purse to find my phone, to plug in to my car, to pick a playlist...

So I end up just rocking out  to cheesy radio stations locked on a 3 song rotation. The ad breaks, become enjoyable as they add diversity to the songs in rotation. I listen, and I waite for a message to be filter through the molasses thick clutter of noise. A congradulations  goes to Conoco Philips; for the drive to end texting (while driving). Or Stop driving Texts!

It does not take a neuron surgeon, or child prodigy, to understand the distraction and danger of texting while driving. The noise, the feeling of needing to respond instantly, the blindness..., etc.

 The National Safety Council estimates that at least 28% of all traffic crashes, approximately 1.6 million, are a result of drivers using their cell phones and or texting.  Cell phone are a distractions, and are costing us huge in; increased insurense premiums, car repairs, and setting  positive role model examples for younger drivers. To battle text-driving Conoco has cleverly created a social media campaign to engage the community to accept and reduce the dangers of texting while driving. 

Conoco has asked for individual input, and is giving away great prices for participation. In  social media marketing strategy, the marketing mix has evolved to be come socially conscience.  In short social media, is the social conscience of brands communicated through different mediums to gain community involvement and support, which in turn leads to an increased status of the brand in the consumers frame of reference.

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