By: Tayyib Aftab
This incident took place when I was sitting with my friend who works at a digital agency. We were having a good time at a nearby ‘Dhaaba’ (local tea restaurant) when suddenly the phone rang, not mine, his. ‘I told you to increase LIKES on our Facebook page and you promised you would do it, in fact, when you pitched your idea, it was the key element’. Then a silence for like 5 seconds, and my friend responded: ‘Please do not worry, I have already sent a message to our team and they are working on it’. And the conversation ended.
I read those thousand words on my friend’s face, which he wanted to say but he didn’t speak. I realized how difficult it is to handle such clients in today’s world. But it got me to thinking, is it really true that these digital agencies are pitching the clients on a promise of increasing Facebook page LIKES?
So, I went back to my box (my brain box actually), where I keep all those blunders of the marketing world and I figured out that whichever campaign I went through, I realized every other brand, every other agency and every other client bragged about the same thing; FACEBOOK LIKES!
Let’s talk about this Pizza brand, who in recent months bombarded the city of Karachi with billboards saying ‘We have reached 1 Million’ and when you look it closer you will find ‘On our Facebook page’. I mean is this really your success factor that you managed to get 1 million likes on your page? How will you measure your performance in terms of your brand awareness, brand loyalty or brand equity? That you have reached 1 million likes? I also wish that one day my tweets reach 1 million, will I make it to these billboards too? (I know that’s not going to happen, don’t think about it).
I am pretty sure that in those 1 million LIKES, the brand might not even have 10% of its genuine consumers who can be considered as their target market. While the rest 90% of the consumers just liked the page because they didn’t even know what to do as it keeps popping up on their Facebook profiles as sponsored content.
Not to forget this telecom brand who few months back celebrated their 2.5 million fans on Facebook and all of a sudden it became the fastest growing telecom brand in Pakistan. Yeah you guess it right! It’s because of those same LIKES that they were referring to.
Now let’s talk about these digital agencies. You open any of their website, you will find this common line written there in About Us section, ‘we are not like other agencies, and we bring creativity’. Is this really your creativity? Your celebration of 2.5 and 1 million Facebook fans?
I run a small blog, Asterisk Reads, which has got presence on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram. I share marketing campaigns from around the globe which I find interesting and newsworthy. If I can manage to create three times the organic reach as compare to my page likes, don’t you think these digital agencies who use this tagline, ‘We are the best’ can’t do? Of course they can do, if they use their brain in a productive manner rather than following the ‘me too’ strategy with clients.
There is this quote of Louis Litt from Suits which comes to my mind whenever I see such a behavior of digital agencies:
“Don’t ever talk about me being attractive again, it creeps me out.”
All I am saying is, BE CREATIVE and your consumers will share your content on their own rather than you forcibly telling them to like/share it. Take a look around at some of the creative online campaigns which created the maximum impact with minimum resources. If needed, you are always welcome to visit my page, in videos section you will find many such campaigns.
Wish You Luck!