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The Sexy Truth of Converging Marketing Trends

Brian Solis' room

Elegancia’s 007 Suite, after our own Sexy Social hearts – courtesy Elegancia

Effective social media marketing never really was a linear function operating within the so-called marketing funnel. And particularly where hospitality is concerned, marketers trying to “convert” in conventional ways has often proven disastrous. A recent article we caught via the a tweet (below) from @emmanuelleMTL a Montreal VP of Marketing in tourism, spelled this out. Vertical industries, especially those that supply “experiences” as products like hotels do, lend your ears here.

The Tnooz article is an interview by Sean O’Neill with none other than Brian Solis of Altimeter Group.  The piece entitled “The travel marketing funnel is broken” talks about how conventional ideas of leveraging Twitter, Facebook, G+ and other social realms to convert customers, may be dead and gone forever. Given Solis’ most recent book, What’s the Future of Business (WTF) and the idea of a whole generation of hyper consumers dubbed Generation C, “maybe” might easily be scratched for irrevocably. Evidently Solis met with at least one hotelier in Paris a couple weeks back while pushing his book, with interesting discoveries at hand on the practical side.

A group called Elegancia Hotels, which is run by a Paris visionary named Philippe Vaurs, offered the perfect backdrop for something Solis and others discuss quite frequently, designed and shared experiences. Vaurs, we found out, actually began designing boutique hotel experiences about the time the whole social gig just got it’s start. Case in point for Solis, Hotel Seven and one of the “experiences” there, the 007 Suite. Without going in depth here, Solis relates via the interview his experience playing James Bond, but more importantly how he elevated the experience by sharing via Instagram, Facebook, Twitter, Tumblr. The response the social media guru got was, in his own words, “stunning”.

Hotel Seven

Marie Antoinette Suite at Elegancia’s Seven Hotel – courtesy Elegancia

O’Neill pins the Altimerter Group guru down on these Elegancia Hotels and their relative successes in social business. However, Solis pulls the transparency and honest critique card out, proclaiming Elegancia could do more. With that, examining how marketing is changing seems applicable here.

One way of looking at Elegancia or any other forward thinking group in business is this. “What about the businesses NOT thinking outside the box socially?” Necessarily, there are a lot more businesses beneath the adaptation curve where social is concerned, and even more when we look at mobile and that social experience developing. Right here the whole customer experience thing seems to be the catalyst so many in social media have predicted for so long. This Vocus G+ share speaks volumes about Solis’ “experiences” being the next wave for marketers. But Vocus is not alone, nor is Brian Solis.

Geoff Livingston, for another, contends that experience marketing even trumps content marketing as the next paradigm for business in the digital realm. Chris Brogan trumpeted these same thoughts and theories two years ago, as have a dozen or more of the world’s top marketing gurus over a span. So why is it taking so long for such strategies to take hold? How could Disney (Brogan points out) come out with a Moment of Truth (Solis has an Ultimate one in his book) and nobody much notices? Phil Butler, editor of Everything PR News is an advocate of these “voices” and others too. The PR slash tech blogger connects more dots here on the convergence of all these “theories” of new age marketing. And there are many, many more.

Adaptation involves change. People do not always like change. Corporations like change even less. So the answers to lagging adaptation really lay in archaic silos of business on the corporate end of things, and sometimes lazy-complacency on the SME end. Add to this a lagging use of communicative tools for business as a whole, and how does that Mom and Pop store even know who Brian Solis is? Do YOU even know who Brian Solis or Chris Brogan is?

You just reached your Zero Moment of Truth on Sexy Social Media. Or, for the first time reader, your First Moment of Truth. Let’s look up those terms, shall we? I hope this helped your business, the rest of the work is up to you to reach your Ultimate Moment of Truth.

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