lessons from the entertainment industry

November 2, 2009 · 0 comments

while social media has been a boon for everyone (those who've taken to it anyway). the area it has most naturally fit into and leveraged exceptionally well is in the entertainment field. whether it's actors, artists (of all shades), bands, writers, performers, personalities and entertainment entities themselves (movies, tv shows, plays, etc), they all are woven well in the space.

the linchpin of it all is that those in the entertainment field (to varying degrees) have a network of passionate, dedicated and loyal followers, fans and other interested folks. they are cultural beacons we can all identify with our own select group out of the lot. it binds us to them and to others of a similar affinity.

how lucky they are and how so few in the corporate brand world are as fortunate. that kind of rapacious following can only be dreamed about for all but a handful of brands.

the entertainment industry has it real easy when it comes to engaging in social media. and there's lessons in there for us less fortunate stewards of brands in the space.

  1. notoriety & celebrity
    this has always been and will continue to be a potent weapon. people love and relate to public figures very well. how can you tap into this directly or indirectly? how can you leverage some kind of celebrity and share in their spotlight?
  2. they have the goods
    the entertainment biz and the personalities have the goods for engagement. content, access and rewards that are not just there, but at the core of what they do. do you have any of these, are they of sufficient quality, and do people actually want them?
  3. they are experts
    it is all about them after all. they are their brands and obviously the experts on the subject. not only that, they are empowered to act or have empowered others to act for them. do you know your business through and through? do you have the power to be present in all your brand spaces and be a leader?
  4. passion
    their livelihood is at stake everytime they put their face or product out there. it's no different for a corporate brand. there are people in every organization who are deeply passionate about the company and the business it does, but also social media itself. find the passionates and give them license.
  5. know your tribe
    the entertainment business is incredibly adept at creating followings. the last 15 years have given them other technologies to build, maintain and message that following to all kinds of success. if you don't already, get to know your consumers and start keeping track of them. build a database, talk to them, get their input, send selective messages. build your loyalty as any band might do.
  6. paid and owned channels
    these are the channels that you have some degree of control over (vs. earned which the consumer mostly does). these two media forms help fuel much of what happens in the earned side (ie. social media). there needs to be some critical mass to it to get you the requisite exposure. then the earned side can sustain you once the word is out there. but it has to be interesting, relevant and sociable. so little marketing is. do yo uhave a checklist to make that happen?
  7. earned channel
    once you have the paid and owned stuff figured out, the earned side needs to be in full effect. but not in the old ways it ways. it needs to have value and importance. the entertainment business has the gossip sites and rags, news shows, fan sites/forums, and embedding in each other. these do a lot of heavy lifting for the industry. is your PR team lifting as much? and is it on strategy and message as much as it should be? it it consumer-centric and not the old corporate speak?

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