Douglas Rushkoff took on the conventional wisdom of brand marketers at the Pivot conference. Earlier this year we posted his talk and it caused a good bit of debate about the nature of so-called "brand conversations" in social media, and the future of branding itself. This is an important topic as social CRM solutions begin to proliferate. According to Gartner, 4/10 of the businesses it polled are planning to roll-out social CRM initiatives within the next five years.Last year
A presentation by branding agency Face takes a different view and advocates a synthesis of data-driven social media analytics and qualitative methods such as ethnography to make branding relevant in the social media age. The presentation quotes Mark Earls saying "Consumers' most valuable relationships are not with brands but with other consumers."
Another valuable insight from the presentation comes from one of Face's own research papers: "Most researchers are not immersed in it... social media is still viewed by many as just a tool rather than as an immersive environment."
So what does this mean for businesses? If you've been reading this blog for long, you know that getting real business value out of social media will mean analyzing increasingly complex data. In social media, this will mean analyzing the relationships between individuals, space and time.
The presentation is overly buzzwordy, but it provides an interesting view on the direction social media analysis could take over the next few years and the role of the human element in social research.