By Stephen Rhodes
Communications strategist David Henderson was musing last week about eyeballs, specifically where there were focused as he and a friend watched passersby with heads down, glued to their iPhones and Blackberrys (PDAs).
I have noticed the same thing and it’s not just teenagers. People walking along the street, in movie theatres, restaurants, board rooms… all with an almost insatiable need to stay connected. The other day I was standing on the main street of a small town in Ontario and I accessed Poynt on my Blackberry to help me find a restaurant for lunch. The street wasn’t that long.
David’s blog quotes Erik Qualman’s book Socialnomics:
- One billion iPhone apps were downloaded by iPhone users in the first 9 months.
- Americans have access to one billion Web pages.
- Newspaper circulation is down 7 million in the last 25 years but unique visitors to online news sources are up 30 million in the last 5 years
- More video has been viewed at YouTube than on all of the TV networks in the last 60 years.
- Barack Obama raised $55 million in one month during his 2008 campaign … all through online social media.
- Twitter was a primary means of communications between ordinary citizens in Iran during the contested 2009 presidential elections.
David adds that Google’s research shows:
- 25% of search results for the top 20 largest brands are links to user-generated content
- 34% of the 95 million bloggers in America post opinions about new products and services … and they have influence.
- 78% of consumers online trust peer recommendations.
- Only 14% of Americans trust advertisements.
He concludes we no longer search for the news, the news finds us … on our PDAs and that companies and organizations need to become an online resource, act more like storytellers, party planners, aggregators and content providers than traditional advertisers or promoters.
Marketing today is a two-way street. To be good at it, you need to keep your head down.