Not only is the copy in ServInt's display ad consistent with the copy on social media site DamnYouAutoCorrect.com, but so is its design. It probably helps that McLean, Va.-based enterprise Web hosting provider ServInt is DYAC's Web host, but other marketers are starting to comprehend social media, too.
Perhaps those marketers have oxytocin receptors that are more apt to lend themselves to empathetic responses, per recent research from the University of Oregon. Or, more likely, they're paying attention to marketing research such as "The State of Online Branded Communities" study released in November 2011 by Chicago-based social media marketing company ComBlu.
The study finds: "As the social ecosystem continues to expand, brands need to better understand how to engage across owned, paid, earned and mass social channels. They also need to continue to innovate the community model. Those brands that 'get it' will have a better foundation for future success. The stagnation observed in this year's study will impede brands as they attempt to build deeper and stronger relationships with stakeholders."
Where brands slipped in their own backyards was, according to the study: "only" 43 percent of the communities had rewards and recognition programs for the members; less than half had a "community manager," or an actual human representing the brand within the community; "only 20 percent of communities actively recruit, recognize and give [member] advocates special roles"; and adopting user reviews and content "had one of the lowest adoption rates at 27 percent, down from 54 percent last year. This is concerning as this type of content drives both consideration and preference."
On the positive end, among the branded communities ComBlu observed for the study, 96 percent were appropriately engaging with members of their owned social networks. That's opposed to what ComBlu observed for its 2010 study, which was a plethora of "one-off" activities.