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The future of the consumer experience on social media

Posted by Chloe Della Costa on March 3rd, 2014 at 1:27 pm

As the social landscape develops, marketers are struggling to keep up. At the iMedia Content Summit in Huntington Beach, California, AJ Vernet, CEO, Republic Project, moderated a panel of social experts on the future of marketing on social channels, with a focus on the consumer's experience. Jeff Ragovin, chief strategy officer, Salesforce Marketing Cloud, Travis Freeman, director, social media strategy, Aegis Media/The Story Lab, Sara Morton, director, interactive media, Saatchi & Saatchi, and Amanda Mahan, creative director, digital/social/content, The Clorox Company shared their experiences and predictions with attendees.

Freeman highlighted the importance of letting others speak for your brand. "Brands often don't want to give up control," he explained. But consumer messages are often the most powerful. For Ragovin, the key is listening to consumers. Even those with limited resources or budgets for social are able to tap into a goldmine of consumer feedback and ideas.

Morton emphasized the importance of doing a periodic "content audit," and Mahan said that when it comes to content, brands need to choose quality over quantity. All of the panelists agreed that a major challenge is the growing amount of noise on social channels today. Mahan added that users aren't going on these platforms looking for ads. Rather, they want experiences. "No one one wakes up in the morning anxious to check for new ads in their Facebook news feed," Mahan said.

Ragovin also reminded attendees of the importance of timing on social, citing JetBlue's efforts disseminating social media feedback to the appropriate people on the team, so that each concern is addressed. In this way, it is essential that a social team communicates with other departments to ensure that the vast amount of messaging coming in from consumers is not lost. Overall, the takeaway is to always keep the consumer in mind. And if you want to stand out from the noise, you'll have to be original, timely, and fill a real consumer need.

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