The Rundown from Social Media Week 2013

The Rundown from Social Media Week 2013

Today marks the end of Social Media Week, an annual event held in 26 cities around the globe that investigates the social, cultural and economic influence of social media on broader society. News from the event--particularly the activities taking place in New York City--have kept my Twitter feed abuzz since Monday morning. For Brightcove blog readers who haven't had a chance to follow along with the #SMW13 conversation, I wanted to share some of the event discussion that is relevant to the day-to-day work of Brightcove's digital marketing and/or digital media customers.

Social TV in 2013
As part of the New York festivities, Digitas hosted a panel on what's in store for "social TV" for the rest of 2013. According to this Streaming Media article about the event, interactive TV is the wave of the future, and we will soon reach a point when TV consumers will have an opportunity to create a "choose your own adventure" viewing experience. The Digitas panel participants also noted that commercials would benefit from greater interactive elements (i.e. what we witnessed surrounding the Super Bowl)--suggesting that advertisers are working hard to combat consumer distraction caused by viewers' second screen activity on their mobile devices.

Ford to Crowdsource Digital Ads for Fiesta Campaign
Ford announced during Social Media Week that its new advertising campaign for the Fiesta compact car will be entirely user-generated. The auto giant is recruiting 100 social media enthusiasts to create video clips that will serve as fodder for TV or online commercials, digital ads or video ads for magazines and newspapers. Ford continues a crowdsourced advertising trend championed most notably by Doritos, but also by Coca-Cola, Chevrolet and other major brands. By tapping into the brainpower of their socially motivated target audience, with primary expenses derived only from the cost of 100 cars (plus gas, insurance and video equipment), Ford has an opportunity to create fresh advertising that may or may not resonate more strongly with prospective car buyers than the material created by a professional agency. It's a really interesting experiment.

How to Take Advantage of Social Media if Your Brand isn’t "Hip"
Discussion from another Social Media Week session called "How to be Uncool and Social" really piqued my interest. So many brands--particularly B2B companies--struggle with how to capitalize on the power of social in an authentic way; this can be difficult when your product or industry is complex and difficult to describe in 140 characters or less. The session explained why "showing is better than telling" and that visual materials (photos, video) can be invaluable when working to communicate the worth of your organization's offerings.

The subjects referenced above are only a small sample of the greater Social Media Week dialogue. The conversation continues online throughout today; use the #SMW13 hashtag to keep track on Twitter.