Social Media Marketing: From 'Bowling' to 'Pinball'

Svend Hollensen, Anthony Raman

    Publikation: Bidrag til tidsskriftTidsskriftartikelForskningpeer review


    Social media marketing can be understood as a group of Internet-based applications that build on the foundations of Web 2.0 and that then allows the creation and exchange of ‘User Generated Content’.

    In the ‘Bowling’ marketing world, marketers target certain customer groups and send out their advertising messages like bowling balls. They use traditional media to hit as many bowling pins as possible. One key characteristic of this bowling marketing game is the large amount of control the company retains over marketing communication because consumers are given only limited freedom of action. Clearly this is a very direct one-way communication approach.
    In a social media marketing world, the bowling metaphor does not fit anymore.

    On this arena marketing can be better described as playing “Pinball”: Companies serve up a “marketing ball” (brands and brand-building messages) into a dynamic and chaotic market environment. The “marketing ball” is then diverted and often accelerated by social media “bumpers”, which change the ball’s course in chaotic ways. Occasionally, the marketing ball will come back to the company. At this point, the firm (brand) has to use the flippers to interact and throw it back into the social media sphere. Consequently, in the “pinball” world, you cannot know outcomes in advance. Instead, marketers have to be prepared to respond in real time to the spin put on the ball by consumers.
    TidsskriftMarketing Canada - Journal of the Canadian Institute of Marketing
    Udgave nummer2
    Sider (fra-til)8-12
    Antal sider5
    StatusUdgivet - 20. jul. 2014

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