Move People To Move Meters
November 25, 2013
Last week, Fred blogged about the Google Hangouts series we started doing with WCSX here in Detroit. The gist of the post was that it's time for radio to start creating more of these "oh wow" moments for fans - experiences that a Pandora or iPod can't replicate.
However, there was a question raised in the comments section of the blog that revolves around the concept of "scalability."
"I agree that [Google Hangouts is] a nice touch for those who are in on it but, at nine participants per hangout, it seems that you'd need a lot more of them than is practical to reach any kind of critical mass."
So, two clarifications to this comment that are important to understand:
First, radio's "mass cume mentality" – complaining over the fact that only 9 listeners can participate per Hangout misses the point of this tool.
Part of this is recognizing that the core tenets of brand building and fan development have changed. And if radio continues to cling onto superficially touching fans in bulk (caller 10) – it will miss the real win -
Creating unexpected moments for fans - one at a time.
Google Hangouts allows you to do just that. Let fans see another side of you, a more behind the scenes look at what you do. It also separates you from the pack as a brand that embraces technology and is leading the way.
The second point revolves around the implication of "scale." If you don't even bother to put the work in on the front end, how can you truly assess an idea like Google Hangouts as "not practical to reach critical mass?"
While I was thinking about this notion of "scale," versus the "one fan at a time" concept, I ran across a tweet from a well-known and highly respected entrepreneur and marketer, Gary Vaynerchuk.
In fact, Gary Vee has made his fortune by serving one customer at a time. In the process, he turned around his family's moderately successful wine business into a $45 million dollar enterprise.
We're living in a time where ideas are flying around faster than we can size them up. And that means we have to be wise, open-minded, and agile.
We know that when you sit around debating whether something is "the next big thing," or if it'll scale – you miss the moment and the greater opportunity to touch fans – personally.
That's the true differentiator for any brand today.
Just look at the rock stars that never miss an opportunity to be good to fans.
From Dave Grohl to Bono to Trent Reznor, who just last week pulled out his phone during a live show to FaceTime with a fan (Andrew Youssef) who is sick and couldn't make the show.
It's not about the number of fans you serve at one time.
It's about hacking your way the best you can to personalize each fan's journey with your brand. And participating in their existing conversations socially rather than trying to force new ones.
Being the 9th caller is not the currency for today's consumers. It's acknowledgement from you in front of their peers and unexpected moments.
Radio has some of the greatest brands in media - but that doesn't mean we're entitled to keep running the same promotions, year after year, in order to achieve mass reach numbers. It's no longer (if in fact it ever was) the recipe to build and keep fan loyalty.
The era of entitlement is over.
It's a new era of "earn."
We have to put the work in to earn their attention. And if it means a series of Google Hangouts, touching one fan at time, that's what it takes.
The dynamic brands will jump on it and get it.
The others will continue scheduling Katy Perry ticket giveaways at 2:15.
Never underestimate the power of the personal touch and the work that must go into anything for it to "scale."
Move people to move meters.
Reach out to me anytime on Twitter @lorilewis.
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