Start with the “charisma and swagger” of Charlie Sheen, add a little Lady Gaga recklessness, mix it all together with the sensibility of John Mayer, and you’re well on your way to a vibrant digital marketing campaign.
Or at least that’s what Harley-Davidson’s, CMO, Mark-Hans Richer seems to believe.
Taking a page from celebrities and musicians who blazed the path before them they’ve embarked on a crowd-sourcing recipe with Victors & Spoils, a Boulder-based crowd sourcing agency who intends to deliver successful digital marketing. It would seem that every American company on the planet is amassing a rapidly growing list of crowd sourcing digital data to give marketers an even more precise method for targeting their ad messages to specific consumers.
I know, you hate social media. More people despise Twitter than use it. You thought Foursquare was a church. You like Facebook, but you fear its Big Brother qualities.
Well, you probably don’t understand that Twitter is the number one news source for news happening right now. But if you can’t wrap your head around that, maybe you should look into SproutSocial, which allows you to track your company in social media. And if you don’t think social media is key to any company’s future, you’re on the road to extinction.
You do that through social media. But, part of the problem for the motor company is its audience knows too many people, who connect with each other online. Once consumers start talking to each other not only do they spread the word about the so-called “motorcycle lifestyle,” but they also let each other know which products are good and which ones are bad. Suddenly, the dealers can no longer jam any old product down the motorcycle riding public’s throat. It’s bad enough when new products leak in advance and are dead on arrival due to bad word of mouth, but even those that make it to the release date intact are not guaranteed sales. Because by the end of the week, the target audience knows whether the product is worth owning via references from friends.
It all comes down to who you know.
But, the reason I’m writing this is because of the job market. Unemployment. It’s steady at 10.5% here in Oregon. About a point above the national average and has remained there most of the past year. Just this past week the Oregonian reported another 300 layoffs by 3 different companies closing down operations. And if that wasn’t enough did you happen to catch Federal Reserve Chairman Ben Bernanke last night on 60 Minutes? He painted a grim picture. Stating that the U.S. recovery is still not self-sustaining while defended his $600B bond purchase to help keep interest rates low. Heady stuff.
I hate to frighten you, but all your partying and drunken pictures are going to work against you in the job market. Inebriation is not a criterion for employment, not even at Miller Brewing. You see you’re building your resume every day online. And whether you can get a job or not is based on this resume and who you know. People always complain how they can’t get a job in this industry or that industry because they aren’t connected. Hate to tell you, but it just got worse! No one’s going to hire anyone without a history, who can’t be recommended by someone. The days of placing a blind ad and taking on all comers is history. That doesn’t even work on Craigslist, and have you seen the type of jobs on that site lately?
If you want to succeed in the future, you’ve got to know people. Who can vouch for you. Ever get called for a reference? You never lie if you know the caller, it’s your reputation on the line. And now that we’re all networked through social media, there’s always someone who knows you, who if they won’t say something negative, certainly won’t say something positive.
And you thought you were just playing online? You see we all live in a social media world. Scary huh?! And as if to help prove my point the CEO of Facebook, Mark Zuckerberg, was also interviewed and talked about changes coming in a redesign. For example, instead of a single profile picture, people who visit your page will soon see a row of photos you’ve been recently tagged in.
It might be time to start making deposits in the persona-curating bank account…
Photo courtesy of Harley-Davidson, SocialSprouts and Google.