Sunday, April 18, 2010

Social Media Addiction

Just read an interesting post by Kristin Cormier on Social Media Addiction over at the Examiner.

Kristin contends "Online marketing and advertising using social media is effective" because social media is addictive.

She goes on to cite a Retreveo Gadetology study that offers some data to support the claim that social media is addictive.

But is that why it makes online marketing and advertising through it effective?

I have my doubts.

First, there have been some studies that show, for example, that Twitter users are more likely to click an ad, but I can't find definitive evidence that social media marketing is more effective than traditional marketing.

In terms of dollar cost, it certainly is cheaper. But what's lost in dollars can be consumed in the time it takes to run a social media campaign.

Secondly, people going through addictive measures are less likely to be responsive to advertising.

Addiction is ritualistic behavior and unless the ritual includes clicking an ad, I don't see it helping advertising.

That said, like subliminal messages, the addicted user will grow more accustomed to a brand.

Whether that leads to an actual purchase is up for debate.

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