Talking to the Groundswell

It is no big surprise that advertising is not as effective as it once was. People have been so exposed, that they have learned to ignore all the “noise,” yet more attempts are being made to capture the attention of consumer. Traditionally, advertisers used the marketing funnel to push consumers through the stages of awareness, consideration, preferences, action and loyalty in order to transform consumers into customers.


The problem here, it that the marketing funnel, is a one way process. The new generation of buyers demands something refreshing, where their opinion is considered. There are some popular techniques to talk to the groundswell;

1) Post a viral video. Make a video that your customers will love, and let them pass it along. It is an effective form of advertising that attracts attention to the brand, because “real” people found it interesting.

2) Engage in social networks and user-generated content sites. Brands have personality…so let it shine! Many companies are unsure if their customers are active on social media. Therefore, use the social technographics profile for justification. Continue if people love the brand. Check out what others are doing and chose platforms that encourage interaction.

3) Join the blogosphere. People like to be involved in a conversation and get a feel for the sincerity of the speaker/writer. In order to be a successful blogger;

  1.  Listen to see if it is appropriate to join the conversation
  2. Determine goals to guide the direction of the blog, whether it is promotional, supportive or responsive
  3. Estimate the ROI, make sure it will be financially viable
  4. Create an action plan to define a unique position
  5. Practice; do not post your first draft…or first ten
  6.  Have an revising and editing process
  7. Connect the blog to the website, and ensure the brand is clearly represented
  8. Make sure the blog is easy to find by creating a marketing campaign
  9. Remember blogging is a conversation, not a traditional one way writing method
  10. Be honest and genuine, or people will know your being phony

4) Create a community. This helps to engage and add value to customers. Kraft does this by encouraging the exchange of recipes and picky eating tips on their online community website.


Cohen, A. (2009). The new marketing funnel. Retrieved from

Li, C. & Bernoff, J. (2011) Groundswell: winning in a world transformed by social technologies. Boston, MA: Harvard Business School Publishing


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