Home  › Social › Social Media
eastman-jwt-social-week

Marketers Warn Against Facebook Fatigue

  |  February 13, 2012   |  Comments

At Social Media Week, JWT execs say hyper personalization and other factors could work against brands and social networks alike.

eastman-jwt-social-weekOn the opening day of Social Media Week in New York City, JWT executives warned of "Facebook fatigue" and other factors that could hurt both brands and social networks alike.

Ann Mack, director of JWT's Trendspotting practice, described a scenario that may occur when the social network becomes publicly traded and is under pressure to increase revenues. One way it can grow, she said, is to turn its customers' data into cash. "That will inevitably raise privacy concerns," potentially prompting people to leave or cut back on using Facebook.

JWT North America CEO David Eastman said some marketers are failing to develop creative approaches for connecting with consumers on Facebook.

Facebook "has become the default tool for lazy marketers who really don't know what to do," he said, recalling the days when businesses bought IBM computers because they were a safe bet. "No one got fired for buying IBM. Today's equivalent is no one gets fired for marketing on Facebook," he said.

As a result, some brands are pursuing "me-too marketing" on Facebook instead of developing marketing strategies. He pointed to a Business Insider article headlined, "P&G To Lay Off 1,600 After Discovering It's Free To Advertise On Facebook," as an example of a brand potentially using Facebook as a "default" marketing strategy.

"Brands need to have conversations with people. Ultimately it doesn't matter where you are having these conversations," he said. However, these conversations must not be boring, or else they will turn off consumers.

Eastman also warned that interactions on social networks have their limitations. Case in point: "Likes" on Facebooks or "pins" on Pinterest, a social network that allows users to create a virtual pinboard showcasing images of items they find or like online.

"Pinterest - it's a beautifully laid out visualization of all the stuff we like, but am I the only person who feels there's something human missing here?" Eastman said. "It all feels a bit empty." The problem with Piniterest or Facebook, he said, is that you can 'like' or 'pin' everything with the same casual action. So if a person 'pins' a recipe for a lemon meringue pie, an image of Revlon lipstick, and photos of a newborn and a tank in front of Tiananmen Square [on Pinterest], it's difficult to determine if a person feels differently about each item," he said.

Brands must also ensure consumers aren't bored by "hyper personalization" and hyper targeting, he said. "As hyper personalization makes niche content experiences ever narrower, brands will place greater emphasis on reintroducing randomness, discovery, inspiration, and different points of view to engage us," he predicted.

Despite the warnings, Eastman had praise for Facebook, along with Amazon, Apple, and Google. "Today's heros are geeks, not Gordon Gekkos," he said, suggesting that the executives behind these companies wield more influence and importance that Wall Street wizards or media titans from the 20th century.

The discussion at JWT is one of 350 events planned this week in New York City and 1,200 worldwide as part of Social Media Week.

ClickZ Live Toronto Twitter Canada MD Kirstine Stewart to Keynote Toronto
ClickZ Live Toronto (May 14-16) is a new event addressing the rapidly changing landscape that digital marketers face. The agenda focuses on customer engagement and attaining maximum ROI through online marketing efforts across paid, owned & earned media. Register now and save!

ABOUT THE AUTHOR

Anna Maria Virzi

Anna Maria Virzi, ClickZ's executive editor from 2007 until 2012, covered Internet business and technology since 1996. She was on the launch team for Ziff Davis Media's Baseline and also worked at Forbes.com, Web Week, Internet World, and the Connecticut Post.

COMMENTSCommenting policy

comments powered by Disqus

ClickZ Today is our #1 newsletter.
Get a daily dose of digital marketing.

COMMENTS

UPCOMING EVENTS

Featured White Papers

ion Interactive Marketing Apps for Landing Pages White Paper

Marketing Apps for Landing Pages White Paper
Marketing apps can elevate a formulaic landing page into a highly interactive user experience. Learn how to turn your static content into exciting marketing apps.

eMarketer: Redefining Mobile-Only Users: Millions Selectively Avoid the Desktop

Redefining 'Mobile-Only' Users: Millions Selectively Avoid the Desktop
A new breed of selective mobile-only consumers has emerged. What are the demos of these users and how and where can marketers reach them?

Jobs

    • Contact Center Professional
      Contact Center Professional (TCC: The Contact Center) - Hunt ValleyLooking to join a workforce that prides themselves on being routine and keeping...
    • Recruitment and Team Building Ambassador
      Recruitment and Team Building Ambassador (Agora Inc.) - BaltimoreAgora, www.agora-inc.com, continues to expand! In order to meet the needs of our...
    • Design and Publishing Specialist
      Design and Publishing Specialist (Bonner and Partners) - BaltimoreIf you’re a hungry self-starter, creative, organized and have an extreme...