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December 22, 2009 / Adam + Dan

Social networking gives power to the people

If you have been asleep for the last 10 days, you may or may not be aware that Rage Against The Machine reached number 1 with their 1992 hit Killing in the name of.

The majority assume this is purely against Simon Cowell and his knack of steeling the number one spot for one of his X-Factor hopefuls. However, I think it is something bigger.

Is it possible, that people are fighting against advertising? The X Factor has been promoted heavily since it started and adopted a trend of always being a dead cert for Christmas number one. With PR and television exposure, Simon Cowell has been eating caviar-stuffed turkey for the last few years.

The Facebook group started to get Rage Against The Machine to number one and boycott the X Factor winner’s chances, was set up about a month ago. It urged the public to download the single which was only available online .

From about midweek, the single was already outselling the X Factor hopeful. By Sunday, it sold 502,672 copies, beating the 450,838 copies sold of ‘X Factor’ winner Joe McElderry.

So with all the dominant TV advertising and PR Simon Cowell delivered, a Facebook group, still managed to bring an unexpected outcome.

This shows how powerful social media can be and in fact the public may well be rebelling against pressured TV advertising and PR. Social media allows people to feel they are in control and have a free mind to choose, without being intrusive from brands.

Social media is personal and if people feel brands interfere with their personal space they will reject it. Compare the Meerkat does this well as they don’t force the brand on you, you’re following a personality, not a brand.

People say social media is dead, but I don’t think so. It’s just about how you use it and how you can interact with consumers without pressure.

Simon Cowell told the mirror: “I am genuinely impressed by the campaign they have run. It has been a good campaign with no dirty tricks and without any funding This is their first attempt at putting out a record and they got a Christmas number one, so they have not done badly at all,”

He has even offered the creators a job in the marketing department at his record company which they have politely refused.

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One Comment

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  1. Tom / Dec 22 2009 11:06

    Interesting post, hadn't looked at it that way.Who's been saying social media is dead?

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