Brands are taking the mick

Brands are taking the mick out of social media. I honestly think a vast majority of them haven’t the faintest clue of the possibilities of social media and thus, limit themselves to regurgitating content that seeks to convince someone to buy. But social media isn’t that.

Social media began as a way to connect people. It remains social but has evolved, and the Millenials to Generation Alpha get a grip of what it currently is.

For example, my ten year old daughter opened a new TikTok account – not her first rodeo. She published her first TikTok and managed to get over 90 followers in half a day and a few hundred likes on a post where she did not reveal her face. I must point out none of her school friends are on this account, and it’s all organic growth.

When she showed me the post, I asked her why she didn’t clean her phone camera. She said that’s the whole point. The content is meant to look smudged. Obviously, she didn’t use the word content.

“Well, next time, how about using a less busy font,” I went on. “You have no idea, Mum!” she rightly retorts. Yes. I said it. She’s right. Her day in the life video where she didn’t even post her face, used a dirty camera, and amateur graphics earned her bragging rights. I cannot boast of such overnight results.

While brands are worried about colours and font sizes, getting likes with competitions and gifts, sales and more sales, the kids are interested in creating content they know their peers will enjoy. And the kids are getting more attention.

The way I see it, brands primarily founded in or led by those from the Gen Z, Boomers II era and before that are limited in their understanding of or cannot fully wrap themselves around what social media should be.

Don’t get me wrong. I’m from the Gen Z lot. And so I get the idea that the way the younguns use social media puts us out of our comfort zone, but at some point, the old ways aren’t just limited, they become broken.

It often feels as though what the audience will like is not as important as how many likes our brand will get.

You must understand that what the audience craves is realness. Or what’s the buzzword? – Authenticity. Art from the heart. Work that shows you care about what they want and not just a cheap thrill in return for mindless purchases.

I mean, it’s possible the big guys with all their money and fancy, persuasive ads and social media content will always convince us to buy. Still, it looks like there’s gonna be these other guys with great captivating content that will change the marketing game. I hope they do because it’ll be good fun.

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