I’ve recently had the opportunity to make a move from my role at Proximity to become the Global Digital Planning Director for Gillette. This new position is at BBDO in New York City. I leave behind the titles social media consultant, strategist, etc, to focus on what I think is needed for the next chapter of my career development – a better understanding of business objectives and strategies, and an answer for my insatiable appetite for famous creative.
My time in social media has taught me that this is not a channel; it is the very definition of the web. It’s only marketing and media people that need to name it and define it. I believe it’s inevitable that the term “social media” will come to pass and in time we’ll opt for a phrase that spans total integration into the marketing mix. In other words… ideas that work at driving persuasion and influence over all media; ideas that will align to consumer behavior, and with a little luck and a lot of insight, change it.
I’m no longer interested in the notion of ownership of social media amongst communication disciplines. If I were a client, I’d put my agency up for review if it had such a small-minded interpretation of this universal medium. A claim for social is like a claim to voice or image… ridiculous. And so the lines blur between PR, advertising, digital, CRM, in-store, events, and sponsorships. Agencies that can’t, won’t, or refuse to execute any initiative in digital without consideration of the social potential are simply doomed.
My biggest take away… a universal truth is born: all digital is social in nature. As print goes online, television goes app-based and gaming goes to the cloud, another truth is born: all marketing is digital.
Digital has sat at the “kids’ table” since the beginning, but now? It sits at the head of the table. Next year’s budgets are beginning to emerge… 30-40%, even 50% going to digital. But how can it be that the head is not the majority of budget? A client once told me… “I’d pay more for digital but I don’t need too.” And guys like me start to belly up to the adult table to offer our experience, our insights and hopefully some wisdom.
A fond farewell to my friends, my extended family, my country, my collegues a I embark on new and exciting adventures as the Global Digital Planning Director for Gillette. The ship sails the first week of August.
Rest assured… we are still at the beginning.
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