Slowly but surely, social media are becoming juggernauts, trying to replace the corporate websites for small, medium and multinational businesses, Nigeria CommunicationsWeek can now report.
End users (customers), media houses, subsidiaries, suppliers, distributors and general merchant organization oftentimes, resort to web portals of their brands for breaking news, fresh contents and exclusive deals, however, nothing begging for attentions could be found on many websites at present.
Before the advent of ad-nauseam social media platforms, corporate communications, applications, and on-line marketing and branding were perfected by organizations via websites, with many businesses in the mid- to late 90′s paid mind-boggling amounts of money to have their websites built to good salesmen at web companies mass producing websites.
Folake Ani-Mummuney, head, marketing and corporate communications at First Bank Nigeria Plc warned that in not too distant future corporate websites will be replaced by their social media, fueled by more and more consumers engaging in daily conversations, often involving brands, across multiple applications, platforms and networks, wholly independent of these sites.
Ani-Mummuney made the remark at Brand Communication seminar held in Lagos recently, stressing that companies are giving up on the idea of a brochure-ware website which serves as the information hub centre for a brands attractiveness to customers and sustainability.
She said, although a brand is groomed to align with contemporary dispositions in the society, as consumers’ conversations become increasingly independent of corporate sites, falling traffic will render them ineffective in their current form.
Speaking on lecture titled “Sustaining the Brand”, Ani-Mummuney maintained that companies, “…may not necessarily morph information on your brand to social media, rather you should make sure that necessary information your customer will require is there anytime, because people would like to access ort source for any information concerning your company or brand even with their mobile phones.
“So the very scope for a brand in this shifting marketplace will be its core values and purpose. The strict definition, execution and adherence to values allows for a brand to move without cannibalizing itself.
“Corporate website is supposed to serve the purpose as launch pads for outreach rather than destinations for inbound interest. Their main role will be to constantly engage consumers in conversation and actively control any misleading information about the brand.
Researches have shown that in the last seven years, the core of a business’ online marketing program consisted of: a website, the customer database and an email marketing program, perhaps, as de-facto plan for many businesses as they appear, the platforms are not only waning in the shadow of newer forms of communication, but quickly becoming antiquated models of thinking.
Result of a Social Media Benchmark survey conducted by business.com shows that 2948 businesses were involved in decentralization of marketing plan. Over 40 per cent indicated they maintained a social site presence.
Further more, among then are 1,197 respondents that indicated their company maintained a profile on one or more social media sites, 8o per cent maintain a Facebook presence and 56 per cent have a company account on Twitter. The average company has a presence on three different social media sites, announcing a big change in mentality and certainly a windfall to the online marketer.
The head, marketing and corporate communications at First Bank Nigeria Plc added that the focus of brand awareness at any given moment, especially to the brand at large, a product launch, or some larger conversation to which it is relevant should be a moving target driven by conversation flow, engagement levels, technology tools and context.