How is Social Media Marketing different from Conventional Marketing communications?

There’s little doubt that technology has changed our lives, the way we are influenced and how we influence others. But for marketing, it’s more than just doing the same old thing using new tools. Thus, Social Media is basically designed to reach an audience ONLINE. Traditional Marketing is designed to reach an audience OFFLINE. Conventional Marketing is done through newspapers, TV advertisements, Radios etc. Below are the few points which can distinguish the Social Media Marketing with Conventional Media Marketing:

  • 2-Side V/S n-Side: Conventional Media marketing is mostly a two sided conversation , a TV commercial or advertisement specified for the target audiences while Social Media marketing is an n-sided conversation which can be shared with everyone and there can be to and fro flow of information in the smallest possible time. Hence Social Media Marketing is the most elegant and efficient way of advertisement with broader reach.
  • Lateral Platform “Noone has a Bigger Voice”: Social Media is a platform where content is created collaboratively. Noone has a bigger voice than anybody else. If a consumer comments are writes about any of the updates of the company than only, the content is created or aggregated. In conventional marketing techniques, this may not hold true. The big banners and the big brand ambassadors may outnumber the number of complaints or dissatisfaction among the brand consumers.
  • Supply Side Emphasis V/S Demand Side Emphasis : In the conventional marketing techniques, a lot of emphasis is on Supply side as in what can be supplied, the same is marketed irrespective of the demand but incase of Social media Marketing, emphasis is on Demand Side. What people want, their demands and their needs, accordingly the product is customized. The most of social media marketing tries to find out what are the current requirements of the user and accordingly product is designed.
  • Why V/S Why Not: Conventional Marketing techniques emphasizes on “why “ a particular product is launched, why a particular post should go live but Social Media Marketing has turned the funnel upside and now people think about “Why Not?” rather than thinking about “Why?”. The unlimited space and the right to put up anything and everything of social media has changed the way the industry is looking at.
  • Linear Returns to Scale V/S Profound Network Effects: The Conventional Marketing technique may work at any point in time and can increase your margins by a percentage but the Social Media Marketing results into the profound effects. The ability of a user to connect with others and than sharing with rest of the people has given domino effects to any campaign. It could be positive or negative. It’s just that every small thing being entered in Social Media can reach to hundred’s and thousands of different people.

Social media marketing is not a replacement for other marketing tactics and we highly recommend that you continue to do what has worked for you in the past.Traditional marketing activities that still work for you, like advertising in a newspaper, sending direct mail and attending networking events, are still essential.However, for most, social media marketing is now a critical component of an effective marketing strategy.In fact, social media marketing works best when combined with other marketing activities, especially email marketing.


What are some examples of failed Social Media Campaigns in India?

With the leading technology, many business accounts hold Social Media Marketing campaigns. But not all business can generate leads through social media marketing campaigns. There are many reasons why social media campaigns fail. The reasons could be “No Defined Goals”, “Not Considering Social Media as a two way system”, “Making assumptions about Social Media Culture”, “Product Pushing or/and Excessive Advertising”, “Hiring a Newbie”. These are some of the advices given by Eclick Softwares, one of the leading internet marketing specialists in Australia.

Below are the few examples of Social Media Marketing Campaigns in India, which did not turn out well :

  • Toyota Caught Spamming :

For a chance to win a new Camry, Toyota asked people to tweet the hashtag #camryeffect during its Super Bowl ad campaign in 2012. However, the campaign accidentally sent back tweets that were considered spam to anyone who used the hashtag. This forced the numerous accounts created by Toyota for the campaign to get suspended by Twitter.

  • #AgarMaKaDudhPiaHaiTo by Fortis Healthcare:  

You would probably avoid a ‘1980s villainous dialogue’ in a hashtag when you’re celebrating breast feeding week. Well, water under the bridge. But you wouldn’t mess it up further like Fortis did. #AgarMaKaDudhPiaHaiTo tag by Fortis invited one liners for a contest. As it spawned negative reactions, they came up with a lame apology that their account was hacked. Serious dearth of reputation management!

  • ‘Like’ a tweet? – INOX

Character limitations in Twitter tend to create typos. But, does it create things that don’t belong to this micro-blogging platform? INOX, in one of its tweet promotions asked the followers to like a tweet. If your social media manager mixes up Facebook with Twitter, you should be looking for a new guy

  • Plagiarism! – Jabong via Flipkart, GoIbibo via Makemytrip

You wouldn’t want to plagiarize even if you have a serious lack of content writers. However, it was totally uncalled for when the e-com giant Jabong created a job listing in LinkedIn that said “wanted a Brand Head to drive awareness for the Flipkart brand”. GoIbibo had a bad day when Makemytrip uncovered a tweet that Goibibo copied from them.

  • Vibrator by Volkswagen

When Volkswagen India’s print campaign which had a small vibrator box pasted to their print ad received widespread criticism, they made matters worse in Twitter. When people started tweeting in absolute mockery, portraying the ‘vibrator’ campaign to be a women’s favorite, the company lashed out in a tweet that “women would be dumb to call it a vibrator. Or maybe they do not understand real driving experience. #PunIntended #Volkswagen #Creative”. The company was forced to take down the offensive tweet and apologize.

From politicians to companies, more groups than ever turned to Twitter, Facebook (NASDAQ:FB), Pinterest, and other social media formats in 2012 to market themselves on the Internet. While some made it look easy, others made serious blunders that stained their brand image

How should one calculate the ROI of Social Media Campaigns?

There’s a popular misconception that it’s difficult to use social media metrics to measure your social media ROI. But that’s not quite true. Nor is social media only good for measuring an increase in brand awareness, although that’s definitely a measurement gauge for social media.

The fact is, social media can offer some of the best metrics for measuring your ROI. All you need to do is set your success guides—what you want to achieve and how long you want to spend achieving it—then measure your results against that.

Here are five steps for your ROI measurement strategy.

#1: Set Social Media Goals

ROI can be measured in a variety of ways: through customer acquisition, lead generation, clicks, revenue, contest entries, etc. It all depends on your goals. Before you can track and measure your ROI, you need to determine your goals so you know which factors you’re measuring and what success looks like.

#2: Determine the Right Platforms

Your social media goals and resulting strategies must align with your platforms. Some fan bases are primarily on Twitter, others on Facebook, Pinterest or Instagram. Find where your audience spends their time so you can position your plan to be successful.

How to Choose Social Media Platforms: This infographic from Melissa Leiterbreaks down the different platforms: Pinterest, Twitter, Facebook, Instagram, Google+ and LinkedIn.

When determining your target market, you must figure out who they are, what platforms they prefer and how much time they spend there. They you can find platforms that are the right fit.

#3: Track Campaigns

You need to track the time spent, cost of ads, etc., as well as the activities and campaigns you launch as part of your social media marketing. There are a variety of tools you can use to do this.

7 Multi-Platform Social Media Analytics Tools: Monitoring your social media is essential for determining your ROI. On RazorSocial, Ian Cleary shares the cost, functionality and benefits of a variety of social measurement tools from free Google Analytics to paid tools like Socialbakers and Simply Measured

#4: Report Findings

It doesn’t matter if you’re reporting to a supervisor or for yourself, you need todetermine a way to report your results. You will also want to come up with a timeframe that makes sense—weekly, monthly, quarterly, yearly or all of the above.

The 5 Top Google Analytics Reports for Social Media Marketers: Convince & Convert has an excellent resource for that all-important dive into Google Analytics reporting. Chris Sietsema shares classic and new tasks for measuring the social impact of your campaigns

The Perfect Social Media Report—Tips and Tricks to Get the Best Results: This report template by Alexandra Cojocaru on uberVu is a little more comprehensive, which makes it perfect for presentations.

It includes platform distribution, as well as qualitative and quantitative metrics, sentiment and results for specific social sites.

#5: Review Results and Reset Goals

Once you have your stats in front of you, you can calculate your ROI and reviewthe results of your marketing to see what worked and didn’t work. If you did paid advertising, that’s important to measure as well, because it relates to a specific cost.

An In-Depth Guide on How to Calculate the ROI of a Social Media Campaign: On 60 Second Marketer, Jamie Turner shows you how to assign a value to your customers and use that figure to determine your social media spend. Jamie then walks you through using metrics to drive changes in your social media campaigns.

Why is the thesis of screening important for Social Media Marketing?

Social Media marketing, a marketing campaign that will have a major impact through social media. Marketing is majorly done to ‘signal’ the brand, the value proposition. In earlier, it was just a 2 sided conversation. An advertisement telecasted on television to focus on particular customers but social media provides a platform where a single advertisement is exposed to lakhs of people all across the world. It’s a big advantage that ‘signalling’ can be done at such a large scale but it has also given an opportunity to people to comment on the quality and doubt about the intentions of the company. Whether it’s a genuine marketing campaign or yet another befooling strategy. In simpler words ‘Screening’.

Once ‘Signalling’ is done, the marketing is out for ‘Screening’. If it can withstand the ‘screening’, it’s a successful campaign on social media, if not it can become one of the worst nightmares for the company. The reputational risk has become very high in such scenarios. Just like social media, if successful, can give phenomenal results, if turn bad it can horribly damage the reputation.

Screening basically means withstanding the customer appreciations and derogations after launching the campaign. Conventional marketing majorly focuses on “Signalling” – providing selective information to customer to make him feel reassured in your product or service but “Screening” is standing up with all the after-impacts of launching a campaign. It’s true that the impact of a campaign multiplies on Social Media, even a negative impact multiplies itself.

Like a situation, where if a Bank is not doing well with the Customer Service, it is more likely that once you launch Social Media Campaign, customers may talk about the dissatisfaction that they are going through. So, it may damage the brand more and hence it may not be able to withstand the Screening. Thus, it is very important to evaluate all the options before getting into Social Media Marketing.

Real Life Examples

Walmart :

Rivals’ successful presence on Facebook was not digestible to WalMart and so they thought of running their own social media campaign on the very same medium.  Initially, WalMart managed to attain a large number of fans but sadly they couldn’t make any use of it.Fearing the negative comments/feedback from the members, WalMart restricted the ‘comments’ option from their Wall Posts. This immediately did away with the whole point of creating a Facebook brand page. The lack of interactivity and self-promotion provoked the members as well as the community of bloggers, and soon enough, WalMart was considered little more than a Facebook joke.


Back in 2009, Skittles volunteered its website and brand for one of the first viral experiments in social media user behavior.  They decided to turn their homepage into a live tweet stream which automatically displayed literally every tweet mentioning “Skittles.” Not that it was a totally new social media strategy; this had already been adapted by Modernista on a smaller level.  Let’s just say, this time it didn’t go well.Wall Street Journal badly backfired this experiment.Soon enough the campaigns’ launch, people began to fill the live feed with abusive comments, cursing skittles. Not only this, many social media activists even posted obscene content which defamed the brand’s image badly.

Comparison of Twitter and Social Media as tools of Social Media Marketing

Social Media Marketing has become very important to get an edge over the competitors, who are not on Social Media or are not able to utilise it to the fullest. Social networking sites available for marketing are Facebook, Twitter, Snapchat, Pinterest, LinkedIn etc. The two most popular for social networking are Facebook and Twitter where most of the campaigns happen. Even if they provide similar kind of experiences to the user with a different way of interaction and engagement but still there are lot of differences. A social Media Marketer should keep in mind those differences while launching the campaigns on both the platforms. Facebook is richer when it comes to holding and releasing contents for your audience whereas Twitter is more focussed on context and releasing information as it is happening in real time. It can take lot of time, resources and money to master and grow your social communities until you see positive ROI.

Below are some of the points which should be taken care while launching a campaign on Facebook and Twitter.

  • Mass Marketing: Twitter is exposed to entire universe of people. There are no friend limitations and the brand can reach out to the mass 200 Million active users anytime. It’s easy to connect and invite the targeted audience to follow the brand. Facebook gives flexibility to invite all of the friends, connections easily to the brand’s facebook page. However, the downside to this is when you run out of friends to invite you have to rely on other people to invite people to the page or create remarkable content that will stand out and attract more people to your brand. If you’re low on budget/advertising for your social media go with this. Hence, in two words Mass Marketing is more effective in Twitter as compared to Facebook.
  • Authentic Connections: Facebook gives a very reliable source incase of authentic connections. Authentic Connections means a user cannot give false information about himself/herself on Facebook as there would be many people associated with the user to question the false information given while it’s not the case with Twitter.
  • Trends: Companies have often mistaken that the trends given in Twitter are correct and they can predict the behaviour but this is also not false that the trends posted by Twitter are momentary and based on that formulating a strategy to launch a campaign may not be a good strategy. Facebook on the other hand offers paid advertising solutions that will help draw attention to the brand’s Facebook page and reach a larger audience you currently have.
  • Profiling: Profiling is also one of the options provided by both Facebook and Twitter. Using Facebook as a login for other sites helps in making available the Facebook content of the site or the brand. It actually helps in authenticating and building trust between the user and the brand. Twitter also provides profiling facility. The only thing is purpose of profiling on Facebook and Twitter could be different. In case of Facebook, it could be trust and incase of Twitter, it could be the mass marketing.

Hence the above key points could be useful in deciding for a social media campaign platform. The pros and cons of each platform is different, although they may seem similar.

What are some examples of successful social media campaigns in India?

Successful Social Media campaigns are totally demand driven. Gone are the days, when content creation was one of the drivers of quality, today the customer engagement through content aggregation is one of the key element to define the success of social media campaign. Social Media not only give advantages of cost, but it also exposes the campaign with the help of profound network. Below are some of the successful Social Media Campaigns in India:

1) KFC

KFC is the number#1 restaurant brand on social media. The digital mantra to success were :

  • Co-creation : ‘Radio KFC RJ hunt’ which received 3000 entries from 30 Indian cities, ‘Design Your Own bucket’ which received 5500 bucket entries , ‘Sachin Tendulkar bucket designing’ on the day the Sachin Tendulkar retired
  • Feedback Fanatics: Every feedback was addressed on social media. Special attention was paid to the customers to make them feel ‘worth it!’.
  • Innovative and Interactive Campaigns: Created unique experiences like making caricatures. Our 17000 currycatures were made. Quick options from the menu of KFC in any Indian Currency note.

With this campaign, KFC was declared among the Top 5 socially devoted brands on social bakers. Overall positive sentiment of the facebook page became 93.8%. The engagement rates became thrice the sector average. With over 5 millions, KFC became top 5 brands in the country

2) 55DSL #55SecondsToLive

The other one of the most innovative and Creative campaign was launched for apparel brand 55DSL from the house of Diesel. In this campaign, the tweeps were asked what they would do if they had “55 Seconds to Live” with the hashtag #55SecondsToLive. All valid tweets should up on a virtual city with Prizes to be distributed. The campaign started trending within an hour of the launch. Zee Khana Khazana used it to promote their contest. The Twitter Campaign report showed 5 Million+ interest were generated, Total Tweets were 2921+, approved tweets: 2400+. The Microsite’s analytics says: 5726 Visitors, 6463 visits and 1.34 minutes spent on the site (Average). 78% of the campaign sentiments were positive. Hence it proved to be a great successful campaign in India.

3) Lancome India #GoNoFilter Social Media Campaign

On February 2014, Lancome geared up to launch its most awaited worldwide customer favourite skin tone corrector , Lancome India took its first steps to explore Instagram! Lancome Dream Tone believes : the way you look, things you say and do are pretty amazing the way they are, so … #GoNoFilter. Lancom kicked off exciting 7 day photo challenge on Instagram encouraging users to upload images as per the themes without using any filter. With this, Dream Tone was making its way to becoming a news and celebrity favourite. Impact of #GoNoFilter

  • +1200 targetted followers on Instagram
  • ~1000 posts using the #GoNoFilter
  • Average engagement consistent at 7-8%
  • ~2.9K likes received for 60 posts plus ~300 comments
  • Instagram Outreach: 693000
  • Twitter Outreach: 169145
  • Total Campaign Outreach: +792000

These are some of the very few social media campaigns in India, there are many more including election campaigns, “Make In India” campaign. The key is how you differentiate your campaign and make the world completely Viral about it!