Hello there Friend, the team and I have been busy this month!
I’m very excited to finally kick off season one of The Flow State Podcast, plus I’ve been reviewing how (and why) social networks are making our jobs even harder.
I thought it would be fun to switch gears a bit following a focus on planning, and strategy technology challenges in the previous updates.
This month I’m zooming out to talk about the Implications of AI in the first episode of The Flow State Podcast; I had the pleasure of sitting down with my old colleague and fellow Yorkshire expat Terri Owens, GM of Product, Data & Tech at Groupm, to discuss how AI is affecting her world.
We covered a broad range of topics including:
- The issues affecting creatives in the film and TV industry
- The continued dangers of social media echo chambers (see below for more on this)
- Why being a hairdresser might be a safe career pivot
You can watch the interview here or search for The Flow State Podcast wherever you listen. We also spoke about the dangers of the ‘algorithm echo chamber’ issue in social, which is being compounded by recent updates.
Social networks have never been huge fans of letting you out once you’re in, but things have taken a turn for the worse if you like to play the algorithm game; not content with raising the walls around the garden, they’re also locking the gates so we can’t leave.
Almost all major social networks now prioritise “zero-click” content (i.e. what we used to call native content that does not feature external links) in their algo, which means driving traffic to your website is either a pay-to-play endeavour or you have to spend your days gaming the algorithms to increase your visibility.
Our friends at Sparktoro wrote a great article on this and Rand a great Whiteboard Fri- wait, wrong company – Five Minute Whiteboard on it – read on for more!
As always I’d love to hear your thoughts on these topics and what you’re seeing across your industry.
What do Nans, Andrew Tate, and hair dressing have to do with AI? Listen to the first episode of The Flow State Podcast to find out!
The wonderful Terri Owens (GM of Product, Data & Tech at Groupm) and I sat down to talk about the real-world implications (and impact) of AI.
Terri is a fellow ‘Geriatric Millennial” (a label I’m sure she will appreciate!), which means we are both a part of the last generation to remember life before digital devices and the internet became an everyday fixture.
We dig into that unique perspective in the podcast, as well as the implications of rapid progression to the next phase of digitally enabled life and what it might mean for our friends, colleagues, peers, and kids.
Social media goes all Kathy Bates* and makes content production even more complicated
*In case you’re not a big Stephen King fan – Kathy Bates famously played psychotic nurse Annie Wilkes in the film adaptation of Misery. In the film, she keeps an author hostage under the guise of “looking after him”.
So like that needy ex-partner or friend we’ve all had at some stage in our lives, social networks don’t want us to spend time with anyone else. Ever.
Two big trends are emerging that are causing my fellow marketers more execution headaches:
1. Zero Click Content – Social network feed algos (with the current exception of Threads) now actively promote native content, meaning they are indirectly penalising content that encourages users to click off the network.
The issues for any business that has an organic or community stream within the brand comms plan are obvious:
- You either have to pay for clicks, or you have to accept that your social media content can only support awareness or in-channel engagement KPIs.
- You now need to build specific content for social, either manually uploading videos and/or stripping links – yet more admin in your production process.
All in all this move (as with many recent ones in the social space) only benefits the network, and not you or your brand.
Further reading on this over at Sparktoro:
zero-click-content-the- counterintuitive-way-to- succeed-in-a-platform-native- world/
2. Playing the Algos – If you are committed to organic social, playing the algorithm game just got harder thanks to AI tools and ChatGPT.
I’ve been immensely amused by the explosion of thirst trap AI “influencers” on Instagram, currently serving the dual purposes of destroying the travel influencer industry and keeping all the creeps busy.
On a more serious note though; building virtual avatars for your business is a really interesting idea for marketing. The current raft isn’t particularly imaginative, so I’d love to see some nineties/noughties-style characters making an appearance. Imagine a hyper-real treatment of our old pal Clippy in the next team meeting!
3. Threads update – how is “nice Twitter” going and how long have we got until Zuck ruins it…
Finally, Threads remains one of the few places you can still get good organic reach, in addition to notable niche options like Mastodon.
The difference is that we don’t know how long we have before the Meta money-making machinery descends on Threads and let’s be honest, ruins the experience for us.
Or will they?
It really all depends if they stick with the launch promise of playing nice with the de-centralised social web. CEO & Founder of Mastodon Eugon Rochko wrote an interesting perspective on how the relationship stands as of launch.
You can read it here.
Prepare to be judged – by me! Early bird entries are open for the 2024 APAC Search Awards
The APAC Search Awards recognise and celebrate APAC’s best Search agencies, companies, campaigns and people, working across a multitude of industry sectors to achieve growth, increase engagement and add value through SEO, PPC and Content.
I’ve been both doing and managing search in agencies for over 15 years at this point, so it will be super interesting to sit on the judges’ side of the fence this year and celebrate the outstanding work happening across APAC.
Entries are open now, you can take advantage of early bird pricing until the 6th of October.
Check out the categories and enter here: https://apacsearchawards.com/
Until next time…
Thanks for reading this far!
I hope you found this interesting. I’d love to know what you would like to hear more of (or less of) and I’m always happy to chat if you would like to discuss anything.
Look forward to hearing from you.