Now, I like my infographics. In fact you can see a bunch of them on one of the pages on this blog, but only I saw one today that I simply cannot believe. It was on this article and the infographic is below:
I simply cannot believe that mobile penetration is 91% and that only 600m people don’t have one. Penetration and subscriptions are two very different metrics – one is the number of contracts out there, the other is the number of actual people who have phones. I know many people with 2 or more phones (and therefore contracts) so this number to me feels grossly inflated by over-consumption in the Western world.
A similar feat of maths blindness comes in the shape of social networks. Frig me, pretty soon we are going to have more people on social networks than people who have internet connection. How can this be? Simple really, if you are active on social media, more than likely you will have one account for one and one account for another so there is probably a large amount of duplication here.
The premise of the story the infographic is trying to tell I have no issue with, but it’s where they use the figures to tell an incomplete/incorrect story that pisses me off.
Found this on Reddit and it applies to so many of my Facebook friends I thought I’d post it here:
It was Theodore Levitt who first pointed out that people don’t want quarter inch drills. They want quarter inch holes. And that is true for any product or service. Yet more and more, the advertising fraternity seems keener (certainly with digital media) to emphasise the drill rather than the hole; what it is rather than the benefit it provides. This is why so many clients are discouraged by results from activity in Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn et al. Jeremy Bullmore wrote an interesting article on this very subject back in 1997/98 and I would certainly recommend reading it (which you can do so here).
In it, Bullmore makes interesting distinctions, including:
- Clients don’t want Research, they want insight and knowledge; an understanding of where they (and their market) is
- Agencies sell Branding/Corporate Identity, but what clients are buying is an instantly recognisable element
- Advertising is of no interest to client, however they are interested in having a beacon shining on their products
At the end of the day, what clients are really looking for is doing activities that help in the drive to making clients spend. But at the end of the day, you need to have a worthwhile product/service. Because as Dave Trott points out
In the real world, products build brands, brands don’t build products.
And as others have pointed out (this quote has been attributed to several different people)
Nothing kills a bad product faster than good advertising.
The North Blog recently posted an entry about Guy Kawasaki‘s conduct and approach to Twitter and Facebook.
Whilst I appreciate Guy’s reasons for doing it – he wants to cut through the clutter and ensure people in different time zones get to see his posts and he gets more followers. I get it, I really do. And it seems to work for him.
However, I don’t believe in it. I don’t believe in it for a few reasons:
- Social is about being ‘real’ – whilst I don’t doubt that his tweets are genuine, there is an assumption that if you tweet you are there and ready for a ‘conversation’ (isn’t that the point of social media?).
- If your followers truly value your tweets, they will seek them. You don’t need to pester them.
- You’re just adding to the clutter you are trying to avoid.
What’s your view? Do you use automated tweets? If you do, how and why do you use them?