Horror drama series The Walking Dead transports millions of viewers each week into a post-apocalyptic world seen through the eyes of a group of Southerner survivalists as they deal with flesh-eating “walkers.” The show is widely known and well-received for its portrayal of an exponentially disruptive second world – and how one group of strategic individuals makes it through day-by-day.
The October 13th season four premiere of The Walking Dead brought fans – including myself – back into this fictional world originally depicted in Robert Kirkman’s comic series (is it just me, or will anybody ever be able to look at pigs the same way again?). With this and Halloween only a week away, this got me thinking as a content marketer: how would marketers fare in a world after the downfall of social media? For instance, what would happen to marketers in a post-Twitter, Facebook, Pinterest, etc. world? Would this constitute the end of human civilization for marketers? If so, how would they fare?
Before the Downfall
Social media is a firm foundation for marketers that are trying to get their feet wet in the space, while at the same time, is a pillar for more seasoned vets that are looking to take their social media game to unprecedented levels. With social media, the opportunities are seemingly endless when it comes to engaging customers and heightening retention levels. According to market research conducted by HubSpot, social media produces almost double the marketing leads of trade shows, telemarketing, direct mail and pay-per-click. Additionally, social media lead conversion rates are 13 percent higher than the average lead conversion rate. And, perhaps most notable, 21 percent of marketers say that social media has become more important to their company over the past six months.
We’ve clearly embarked upon an exciting path toward social media becoming a pinnacle of marketing, but what if it all went away?
Would marketers become like protagonist Rick Grimes and find their way to the closest dose of reality available, despite the near impossible chance of it actually happening? Would they assume a natural role of leadership and guide others using practical methods of survival – or, in this case, innovative new marketing techniques?
Or, would they become like Shane Walsh, Rick’s best friend who is promptly bumped out of his top spot upon the main character’s return? Plagued by confusion and anger, would they try to lie their way back to the top marketing spot?
Perhaps some will be like Morgan Jones, the marketer who falls off the grid for what feels like an eternity only to devise a series of unstoppable strategies and techniques – although they have lost a few of their marbles in the process.
The concept genuinely intrigues me. What would happen in a post-social media world for marketers?