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The Changing Playing Field in Social Media.

When social media first came on the scene, it was considered by many marketers as a way to level the playing field when it comes to brand-building.

All of a sudden, the “little guy” had just as big a platform from which to trumpet key messages – especially if those messages were clever, intriguing or super-timely.

But something has happened.  As user participation in Twitter, Facebook, Pinterest, LinkedIn and other social platforms has grown and matured, these platforms now require far more “pay to play” from the companies who post messages to them.

Whereas before, a simple Facebook post would be served to an entire “friend” or “like” or list, now it’s far fewer than 15% who will see the post … unless the poster is willing to pony pay for promotion.

The fact is, social media is starting to behave more like other media:  What’s old is new again.

And just as traditional media benefits the “heavy hitters” with the biggest pockets the most, social media does now, as well.

This isn’t to say that social media doesn’t provide opportunities for smaller companies to make a splash in the market.  Thanks to social platforms, it is possible to make more “marketing noise” on a broader basis and with a lower dollar investment than back in the pre-social days.

But as for accomplishing it on a shoestring budget?  Those days are pretty much over.


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