Rough Draft: Final Project Research Paper

Thesis: Social media advertising exhibits success (define success here; financial? popularity?) in ways that traditional advertising (also define, tv and print, or also radio? Does print count as traditional if digitized?) has failed to achieve. Not only is the social media platform cost effective, particularly through the use of bloggers and influencers for product placement, but it also speaks to advertising’s larger goal of eliminating emotional and physical distance with their audience (in what ways is this erasure manifested?). This form of advertising achieves intimacy through its unique use of specificity and shifty infiltration into personal forums. This includes political and social change advertising, which also recognizes the necessity of personalization to better deliver the structure of an advertisement. Marketing is malleable and reflective of changing societal pressures and platforms.

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Points to Cover:

  1. What about these platforms allows for better advertising?
  • Social media is an expressive platform meant for personal connections and entertainment. Because of its context, companies can use these networks to to locate and manipulate specific niches which is even more of a pin-point channel than that of a print magazine targeted towards young women or a television channel targeted at white men.
  • Use YouTube as an example–highly specific communities (Swedish goth fashion bloggers, healthy lifestyle millennial women in LA bloggers, COD gaming communities)
  • The use of a specific blogger/influencer inevitably generates an irreproducible image with your product

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  1. Why is an independent ad on social media platforms more effective that its equivalent in traditional advertising?
  • Because of these very fluid platforms, advertisers can find nuanced ways of capturing their viewers’ attention that lacks the constraints of 30 or 60 second commercials or a stationary page. They can use tracking cookies to watch Internet users and categorize tastes. This is simply a more invasive, perhaps, but certainly specific way of categorizing which advertising has always used.
  • Advertisements are able to blend in straight into the structure of the platforms, making them less obvious as removed, dissociated advertisements. Use Facebook and Instagram ads to exemplify.
  1. What unique skills do bloggers and social media influencers bring that those working in the fields of traditional advertising lack or fail to employ?
  • These users have already established communities. They have a highly personal image, whether that’s “authentic” or not, and those who tune in view them as micro-celebrities in the form of friendship and intimacy, not as removed public figures.
  • Using “real people” with their own ability to mass or drip schedule their own posts allows for a very flexible advertising schedule, especially one where an advertised post or video can stay up on the Internet for an indefinite amount of time. Nothing is fleeting.

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  1. How does this relate to advertisements that aren’t for products or services, but instead, for people?
  • Social media is all encompassing with its usefulness for marketing. The intimacy and infiltration of products applies also to relationships politicians or others can want to create with certain audiences.
  • All these previous points about establishing community and removing the separation of advertisements and their audiences in a temporal and geographic way.

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