If you’ve ever received a random text message or e-mail, you may not think much of it but what if it is tailored to your interests? That’s what this brief article is about. What are the risks and considerations involved with mass communication tools?
Triberr: A Retrospect
A few weeks back, I shared my first impressions of Triberr. I think the founders are doing a good job allowing partipants to opt-in and opt-out of communications. There are automatic filters and manual processes in place to keep spam to a minimum. Of course, if you don’t like being overwhelmed with push content, it may still seem spammy.
…But what is spam, really?
I’d like to note that, now that I’ve used Triberr more extensively, I can attest that it does not lack warmth. Tribe members interact with each other and help each other out. It’s a great way to meet key influencers, cool geeks, and clever innovators. Surely, some tribes focus purely on mass reach but most care about relevance and maintaining a focus (and tone) through their collective wide-scale communication efforts. You really feel that you’re sharing valuable and useful content, not merely saturating the market with sales pitches.
Are You A Spammy Offender?
To me, spam is any unsolicited content, even if it comes from friends. If there is no warmth or relevance to your communication, I’ll treat it as spam. If it’s repetitive without due cause or real value, it’s really bad spam.
People are doing whatever they can to avoid interruptions and noise. This is why traditional interrupt advertising is on a steady decline, no matter what so-called “experts” may say. We want messages, stories even, that matter to us. The rest is unwanted junk.SMSCaster.com And The Need To Abolish Faceless, Soulless Marketing
SMSCaster seems like a great idea for push content but I am not a fan of someone I don’t know sending me a text about something that, somehow, relates to me. Where is this data coming from? I’ve checked out other blogs and SMSCaster seems to be on a rise. Certainly, it’s not alone: there are countless tools that automate the mundane, at the cost of foregoing warmth, authenticity, and human interaction.
SMSCaster, like many other so-called social media tools, is a platform that would benefit from more flow control. Allow your marketing targets to opt-in to messages that follow a specific criteria or let them unsubscribe all together. Don’t make your audience feel trapped.. Imagine the potential here if someone has limited texting on their cell phone plan and they get hit with tons of random advertisements. It’d be utter chaos.
If you want SMSCaster to be legit, fix it (I’m talking to YOU, the faceless and perhaps gutless minds behind this ugly tool). Anyone using the service should be limited to only a few broadcasts a day or, better yet, week. Once that person gets positive reviews from authenticated users, they can send more text message blasts. Of course, you need context to keep these messages relevant. Let’s keep people honest.
Context drives relevance and significance alike; without these strong components, you are a mere spammer.
For example, if someone is a vegan, sending them an ad about angus beef hamburger patties will certainly be seen as spam. No one wants that nuisance, especially on something as intimate as our cell phones! It’s comparable to delivering flaming poop to our doorsteps. Sounds crazy? Exactly!
Protecting Your Privacy And Personal Data
We can only hope that mass communication services like Triberr and SMSCaster maintain their integrity and credibility by protecting our anonymity. Social media is about putting ourselves out there and interacting, but we don’t want all our vitals whored out, do we? Allow your users to control the experience and suit it THEIR needs, not yours. Of course, greed and the human urge to self-promote and self-gratify may trump such efforts. That is why we need to protect ourselves.
Unless you live under a rock, you’re at risk of having personal data compromised; thus, a certain degree of paranoia doesn’t hurt.
Be careful what sites you give information to. Better yet, if data is not required, leave fields in profiles and sign-up forms blank. Do Google searches to see how visible your personal data is, using all known aliases and handles.
What does your virtual resume reveal about you?
Do not take for granted the security of high-profile networks and sites. Just look at Sony Playstation Network (PSN) and the debacles thereof here in the year 2011. No one is safe from hackers so cover your tracks, just to be safe.
If you absolutely must share personal information, set up redirects/aliases, dedicated e-mail accounts, alternate phone numbers, and forwarding addresses to keep your main data safer. No amount of security is full-proof so look at security measures as deterrents and try not to make it easy for personal data to be whored out.
Conversations Trump Screaming For Attention And Mass Reach – Make It About US!
If you insist on mass communications and deep/wide market reach, target people that you know will likely enjoy what you want to share. One-on-one interaction takes a lot of work, I know, but don’t forego warm connections by blindly sending out blasts. Conversations work, which is the REAL reason social media is a game changer. Tell us why we should care and we might just listen. Make your marketing strategy about us, not you.
For countless decades, marketing has focused on one-sided stories. Social media brings interactive marketing to the forefront: build conversations and relationships.. Interact with people in REAL ways!
Twitter is one social medium that I feel is often misused. I find people avoid Twitter because of the silly stuff people share on there. I realize that it was initially launched to share the mundane but Twitter has evolved into something more relevant and less spammy (thankfully). The value is there but people have been turned off.
Overall, I think social media, like anything else, is great but adulterated at times. If you got something remarkable to share, get people excited about it but don’t scream at them. No one wants that mess.
Anyone else find SMSCaster intrusive and impersonal? What kind of messages have you received? What other social mediums do you find annoying? Are these nuisances something that keeps you away from social media and social networking? Do you think most businesses understand how to leverage social media honestly (and offer valuable experiences)?