To Social Network or Not: The Current Agency Quandary


I’m going to get straight to the point today…My question to you is “To Social Network or Not?”

As an owner of an ad agency, this question comes up quite often. Clients hear how awesome MySpace, Googtube (my acronym for Google and YouTube), and the millions of blogs that are out there. Clients want to know how to have their product featured on these sites and how much will it cost.

They want to know what a social network is. I say it is the new age of socializing. It rarely takes place in person and is mostly done online. People create “friends” online, exchange pictures and thoughts about various things from should I dye my hair blue to political opinions. This is the new age way to find a date, find others to chat with in similar life situations, and blow off steam in a somewhat anonymous environment.

As an ad agency you need to be very to extremely savvy in this arena, because you can get torched and the cost ends up losing you and your client way more than money.

Below are a list of reasons I give clients for why they can advertise on such sites and why they should think carefully before moving forward:

Reasons to advertise:
– No matter your target audience you can find them on most social networks
– Social networks have taken on an older audience, for instance it has been reported that MySpace is no longer just teens and 20 somethings, now there is an overwhelming amount of 30-54 year olds socializing on places like Myspace.

– Good for branding or announcing a new addition to your product line
– Good possibility of partnering your product with some other big names out there
– There are social networks for about any age range you can think of; college social networks, business social networks, ethnic social networks, kid social networks, baby boomer social networks, music social networks, pet lover social networks, etc.

Blogs: I’ve highly promoted blogs and rockin’ syndication feeds, and I have yet to find a subject that has not been covered out there. When promoting a product in a friendly non-press release way, stick to respectable blogs.


  1. We run an online ad network focused on the retail industry. It includes a site, which is an online social network for retailers. We find that vendors are beginning to see the benefits of an integrated campaign(text ads, graphics, content and email presentation)that positions them as a trusted vendor partner rather than an advertiser. Many however can’t identify that point person or team within their organization that will blog, look for forum topics to chime in on, post useful articles and in general “participate.”
    It’s a hard commitment for them to make when they have been trained to measure campaign success in terms of Adwords analytics. It’s good to hear that agencies are looking for niche social sites that serve their clients’ industries. Together perhaps we can help advertisers develop online campaigns that are viewed as a resource to the viewer rather than a distraction.


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