Branding Is Not A Popularity Contest

©IDG Communications, Inc. Photo contributed by Matthew Mikaelian.


There is a disturbingly misguided popularity contest among brands being hosted on Facebook these days. The frenzy among brand marketers looking to engage consumers in social dialogue has created an unhealthy new benchmark of brand health — the number of Likes they have.

Social media is indeed revolutionizing the way that brands and consumers interact. Marketers should be investing in new and better ways to listen, share, co-create and otherwise communicate with consumers.  But the end goal cannot be to amass Likes as if they are votes of brand equity, because they are not. In fact, I don’t know any good brand manager who wants everyone to “like” his or her brand. They should want a growing group to love their brand — even if that means another group doesn’t.

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