How Social Media Impacts Advertising and Marketing

Social media provides such a great platform for collaboration. I’ve gained a lot of insight by listening and by engaging in online conversations particularly through my blog, Twitter. I love that it is still evolving and all of us are figuring it out as we go. I’m appreciative to the early social media adopters and for their continued influence within this new space. My interest in social media is from a communications, marketing and new business perspective. I saw the potential for social media early on and have been evangelistic in my encouragement to my audience, small-to midsize ad agencies, to get involved.

I’ve already written about social media’s impact upon ad agency new business: Four Ways Social Media is Changing Advertising Agencies New Business. I also believe that social is having great impact upon advertising and marketing. 

Broadcast, outdoor, print, direct mail, radio are not going to go away. If you don’t believe me, along with people like Seth Godin, you should also be reading Bob Hoffman’s blog, The Ad Contrarian. Advertising already is and will continue to be greatly influenced by social media.


We’ve all ran into difficulty with clients not willing to spend the time and money for the kind of qualitative and quantitative research that is often necessary for a advertising/marketing campaign to be successful. Measurement has also been a problem.

From my experience some of the best campaigns agencies created often came from a nugget from the research that caused an epiphany  that “ah-ha” moment when they knew they had it. That great idea that would drive the entire campaign.

I see that as one of the primary benefits to social media. It is not what a brand means to the company or what your agency’s brand means to you, it’s what it means to the consumer, to your prospective clients. Perhaps the reason so many agency’s have difficulty with their own branding is that they are in their own silo without the point of view from their prospective clients.

Social media is time intensive but it is affordable and allows us to learn so much from our audiences. I’ve conducted numerous surveys and polls this past year. My hard cost totaled $72. The information that I gleaned has been priceless. Social allows us to tap into the minds of our audiences like anything I have ever seen before.

Social media provides agencies/clients with affordable research on an even grander scale than we’ve ever been able to conduct in the past and it is almost instant feedback. It is affordable, timely and easier to measure than traditional  media. 

This is why I believe social media will be the hub to all of our advertising/marketing. From broadcast to direct. We can engage our audience and know what messages are appealing, what resonates. We can do it quickly and that info will provide the epiphanies  and “ah-ha” moments when we know we have that valuable nugget for a successful campaign.

Social media is not only important for our clients and their brands. It is important for an agency’s brands. I encourage you to understand and use it for your agency before attempting to use it for clients.

It is the best tool I have ever used in helping agencies with their own branding.

It compels us to do new business the way we should have been doing it all along. It forces us to lead with benefits, to create an appealing brand from our clients perspective. To be successful with social each agency will have to narrow its focus, declare who they are, how they are different.

I don’t claim to be a social media expert. But I have immersed myself into it in a big way and have been professionally enriched beyond my initial comprehension. From a new business perspective for small-to midsize ad agencies social media is the greatest tool you will ever use. I hope you’ll get on board and find out for yourself.

A note to loyal readers: you are so gracious to overlook my typos, bad spelling and grammar (especially when it is 5 am). Thank you for your appreciation and encouragement in spite of them.

Social media helps agencies create a more clearly defined focus and differentiating business strategy that will give them a competitive advantage for new business, a higher-profile reputation, and an improved ability to attract and win the clients they really want.

Additional articles that may be of interest:

About Michael Gass

Consultant | Trainer | Author | Speaker

Since 2007, he has been pioneering the use of social media, inbound and content marketing strategies specifically for agency new business.

He is the founder of Fuel Lines Business Development, LLC, a firm which provides business development training and consulting services to advertising, digital, media and PR agencies.


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  2. I have found that Social Media is a powerful tool for startups and people who have been off the radar. There is a huge oppourtunity for existing business to evolve and become more effective.

    Social Media training is a new venture that I am undertaking as I see the gap.

    Thanks for the info.

  3. Thanks Jared.

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