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September 29, 2010 / Adam + Dan

Twitter, brands and advertising

[tweetmeme source=”adamanddan” only_single=false]We’re all for brands advertising on Twitter, but it does take away the idea of creating great social media campaigns. As stated on Mashable – advertisers are spending “upwards of $100,000” on promoted trending topics and many brands now use them to drive traffic to their sites.

By doing this, in a way brands have gone from being clever by gaining user interaction and then subtly displaying the brand to being intrusive and telling twitter users what they should be talking about.

If you tell people what to talk about, then it’s not a trending topic. They’re talking about it, because you’re telling them too.

Too many brands are trying to buy presence on social media, but in reality, you have to earn it. There’s no shortcut to getting customer loyalty in the social arena. Money can’t buy you fans. Hard work and a good social media strategy does. Something that big brands often don’t think are worthy of having.

Take Old Spice for example. It was an amazing campaign and deserves all the accolades it received. The personal replies on Twitter were amazing too and a great bit of social media at it’s best. However, that too bought presence on Twitter to get people talking about it. It really didn’t need to.

People don’t like talking to brands, that’s why social media is a good space to use for them. However if brands starting advertising heavily and telling people what to do on the consumer’s own space, people won’t engage with it. Social networks are like a consumers home and brands are merely a guest.

It’ll be a shame if we start seeing all social media campaigns at the bottom of trending topics with promoted tweets. If the idea’s good enough people will talk about it themselves.

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