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Don’t Be a Social Media Party Pooper


“I hate the words ‘social media’ because when top executives hear the word media, they think advertising,” said Kelly McDonald, owner and CEO, McDonald Marketing, Dallas, in today’s session “The Brave New World of Marketing: Meet the Digital Consumer.”

According to McDonald, those folks would be better off focusing on the word “social.”


McDonald likened those companies that focus on the “media” aspect to meeting someone at a conference and inviting him to your friendly backyard bbq only to immediately barrage him with brochures and a Power Point pitch.

People aren’t looking to be pitched, but might be interested in talking business in the course of conversation.

“People do discuss business socially. So social marketing is the same thing. … It’s a business conversation that happens to be taking place online. It’s not about pitching your customers.”

Much of the session came back to treating customers in the social media world the way they’d be treated in person. In fact, merging those worlds can occasionally be helpful, too.

After the session, one supplier said she worked with two different brands on different Facebook pages, but despite using a similar approach on both pages, the fans of one Facebook page weren’t responding as enthusiastically as the other.

McDonald suggested the supplier invite a handful of those quiet Facebook fans into the office for a focus group. A small financial incentive and pizza could help to find out what those fans are looking for.

By the way, SN has a booth at the show. Stop by booth 2814 and visit Food Group Marketing Manager Erin Elkind.


David Orgel

David Orgel is executive director, content & user engagement, of Supermarket News (SN) and its website, Orgel delivers his opinions on industry trends through a bi-weekly...

Jon Springer

Jon Springer has been writing about food, food retailers and food retailing for more than 10 years, and is in his second tour of duty with Supermarket News. His prior experience includes covering the...
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