Is Mr. Kotler Still Relevant in the Today’s Age of Social Media Marketing???

Since the beginning of my social media marketing course, I have been wondering if the concepts of traditional marketing as given by marketing gurus like Mr. Kotler and Mr. Porter still valid in today’s age of social media marketing. The bad news is that the fundamentals of marketing hasn’t changed with internet, it’s just that the execution platform of the marketing strategies have changed. This doesn’t mean that the traditional form of marketing will be a thing of the past. In fact social media marketing will compliment conventional means of marketing in future.

Some of the differences between social media marketing and conventional forms of marketing are as follows:

S.No. Key Aspects of Marketing Traditional Form of Marketing Social Media Marketing
1 Type of Marketing Uniform, Structured and Clear. Ex. advertising campaigns and service hotlines, etc. Dissected, Unclear and Spread. Ex. Status updates, blog articles, twitter messages, etc.
2 Direction of Communication Unidirectional (One to many). Ex. Information spread by the company (active), consumers only listen (passive). Multidirectional (Many to many). Ex. Both company and the consumers talk and listen (both active).
3 Scheduling Long Ranging. Ex. Ad campaigns are planned both over and for long period of time. Spontaneous. Ex. Ad campaigns are not planned in detail but reactions to comments and requests.
4 Communication with customers Well considered and reviewed. Ex. Communication only between the company and the consumers (via phone, email, or letter) & point of discussion is kept secret. Fast and Public. Ex.Reactions to comments are immediate and public, anyone can read and join a discussion.
5 Availability During working hours. No direct support beyond working hours. Permanent (24/7). Constant readiness to react to (negative) comments and consumer requests replies expected within 24hrs max.
6 Scope Specific. Optimized for certain target audience and market. General. Available for anybody and everywhere. (Optimized for public.)
7 Wealth of Experience Analog. Similar successive campaigns and assured legal position. Alternating & Innovative. Changing technical requirements, innovating marketing concepts and legal position unassured.
8 Supervision Customer Protection. Marketing activities supervised mainly by consumer protection and competition. User and Platforms. Marketing activities supervised by authority for consumer protection, competitors, platform operators and users.
9 Language Formal and legally safe. Strict “Marketing Language”, ready-made full sentences. Genuine and Direct. No ready-made sentences but personal responses and short answers.
10 People Involved Marketing department, public relations department, external agencies and sales department. New media marketing department, social media department, public relations department, every employee and user and management.

The business models are in principle same for both social media marketing and traditional forms of marketing. From the cost perspective on an average the cost of social media campaign is one tenth the cost of conventional form of marketing. Also the return on investment of a social media marketing campaign can be calculated with a fair degree of accuracy as compared to traditional form of marketing.

The one major difference between social media marketing and traditional form of marketing is that social media marketing is unforgivable. One single mistake and it becomes viral throughout the web and it stays forever as no one has any control over the web. Compared to social media marketing, traditional forms of marketing can be withdrawn if the response is not favorable.

To conclude the basic fundamental remains the same only the execution change. Sorry folk u have to read Kotler and Porter.